UCLA starts big, rolls over hapless Oregon StateJan 3, 2009 - 8:09 AM CORVALLIS, Oregon (Ticker) -- UCLA showed Oregon State that it is going to take a lot more than the addition of a celebrated coach to get a win in the Pac-10.
Darren Collison and Michael Roll both scored 16 points as ninth-ranked UCLA ran roughshod over overmatched Oregon State, 69-46, in Friday's conference opener for both teams.
Freshman Drew Gordon chipped in 11 points for the Bruins (11-2, 1-0 Pac-10), who won their seventh straight game.
About the only thing talked about as much as UCLA's chances for a fourth consecutive conference title in the Pac-10 so far has been Oregon State's hiring of new coach Craig Robinson, the brother-in-law of President-elect Barack Obama.
Aiming to lift a floundering program, the Beavers hired Robinson last spring, and the coach has received some extra national attention as Obama underwent his historic campaign to the White House.
However, Oregon State (5-6, 0-1) showed Friday that it needs more that just some national publicity, losing its 21st straight conference game.
The Bruins put the game away early, hitting six of their first nine 3-pointers en route to a 26-8 lead just under 10 1/2 minutes in. Roll capped the outburst with consecutive baskets from the arc.
The junior reserve finished 4-of-4 on 3-pointers, continuing a stretch in which he has scored in double figures in four of his last five games.
UCLA led, 37-16, at the half, and was up, 57-32, with 6:54 remaining when Collison capped a 12-2 run with a 3-pointer.
Surprisingly, Robinson stated that he knew that UCLA would have a big first half. Instead, he was more concerned how his team would respond afterwards.
"It goes without saying because we did such an opposite job in the second half than in the first half," he said. "That was what I expected in the first half.
"These guys have to understand the learning process. It's a curve. It's not a straight line and you are going to have some setbacks. We were able to have that second half that gave us some confidence and showed we can play with the best team in the league."
The Beavers did manage to hold their own after the intermission, shooting 53 percent (10-of-19) en route to trailing the Bruins by just a 32-30 margin.
"Obviously, they came out disappointed being down at halftime, so you knew they were going to have a surge coming out," UCLA coach Ben Howland said. "You want to be able to be comfortable when you build a lead like that, but give credit to them because they came out and didn't quit."
Along with its hot shooting, UCLA was dominant defensively, forcing Oregon State into numerous turnovers in the opening 20 minutes.
"In the first half, our defensive intensity forced 11 turnovers," Howland said. "I thought we really controlled the game. (Jrue) Holiday's defense is getting better and better and he is taking their best player and is getting better at that. They looked really good for the Pac-10 opener."
The Beavers ended up with 20 turnovers, which the Bruins turned into 27 points.
"Turnovers, turnovers, turnovers," Oregon State sophomore guard Calvin Haynes said. "That was the big thing. I'm not saying they didn't jump on us, but it was a lot of what we did not do.
"We didn't execute our offense. We didn't rebound. We didn't box out. We had a lot of missed assignments tonight. That hurt us."
Haynes scored 16 points for the Beavers, who had a four-game winning streak snapped.
- NCAA BB
FINAL 1ST 2ND TOTAL
--- --- -----
UCLA (9) 37 32 69
OREGON ST 16 30 46 FINAL
Jan 3 12:18 AM
- NCAA BB
(9) UCLA 37
OREGON ST 16 HALFTIME
Jan 2 11:13 PM
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