Love, UCLA roll to another lopsided winDec 19, 2007 - 7:12 AM LOS ANGELES (Ticker) -- Kevin Love and UCLA were not expected to get much of a challenge from Western Illinois. They didn't.
Love scored 16 points and grabbed seven rebounds as the eighth-ranked Bruins had no trouble posting a 77-52 victory over the Leathernecks on Tuesday.
Darren Collison scored 12 points and Luc Richard Mbah a Moute added 10 for UCLA (10-1), which continued to treat its opponents harshly following its only loss of the season.
After coming up short in a 63-61 decision against then-No. 8 Texas on December 2, the Bruins have roughed up their last three foes by an average of 25.7 points per game.
UCLA coach Ben Howland's only concern about the early part of the schedule is how it prepares the squad for the Pac-10, which begins at Stanford on January 3.
"Bottom line, our season is going to rest on how we do once Pac-10 play begins," he said.
Western Illinois was already down 14-7 with nearly seven minutes expired when UCLA put its foot down, ripping off a 14-0 run. Love hit a 3-pointer and made two free throws and Mbah a Moute added four points as the Bruins went ahead 28-14 with 7:36 remaining.
UCLA, which travels to Michigan on Saturday, led 42-19 at the break and extended it to 57-29 on a fast-break layup by Collison with 14:36 remaining.
Playing in his fifth straight game after missing the first six with a knee injury, Collison shot 3-of-5 from the field with a 3-pointer and grabbed three steals.
The junior point guard is averaging 13.6 points on 49 percent shooting (23-of-47) since his return.
Russell Westbrook, who filled in at the point in Collison's absence, added eight points and seven assists.
"Russell Westbrook had a great game," Howland said. "His playmaking ability was really good tonight."
Despite capturing their second straight contest by at least 25 points, the Bruins had some issues, finishing tied in rebounds at 30-30 and shooting 5-of-17 (29 percent) on 3-pointers.
The previous stat drew the ire of coach Ben Howland, who expects his team to decisively win the battle on the boards against an opponent of Western Illinois' statue.
It did not help that the Leathernecks finished with a 12-9 advantage on the offensive end.
"I was not pleased with the 12 offensive rebounds by Western Illinois," Howland said. "We've got to get better at blocking out. We'll be doing some box-out drills Thursday."
David Jackson and Jerryck Owens-Murray had 10 points apiece for the Leathernecks (3-7), who committed 20 turnovers, leading to 26 points for the Bruins.
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