Recap: Arizona vs. UCLA
Las Vegas, NV (SportsNetwork.com) - UCLA had missed 12-of-13 shots against Arizona's stifling defense before Jordan Adams rose up and hit the biggest one of the Pac-12 Tournament.
Adams' go-ahead 3-pointer with 43 seconds left lifted the Bruins to a 75-71 win over the Wildcats in a Pac-12 Championship Game thriller.
The game was tied 68-68 before Adams used a flare screen to create separation from Nick Johnson and fired a left wing triple over the Pac-12 Player of the Year.
Aaron Gordon airballed a left corner trey at the other end, but Kyle Anderson missed the front end of a 1-and-1 to give Arizona another chance to tie.
Johnson and Gabe York, though, were unable to connect on their 3-point attempts and David Wear sunk two foul shots with five seconds remaining to seal UCLA's first Pac-12 Tournament title since 2008 in its first year under new head coach Steve Alford.
Kyle Anderson tallied 21 points, 15 rebounds and five assists, while Adams added 19 points for the second-seeded Bruins (26-8), who shot 25.9 percent (7- of-27) in the second half after hitting on 58.1 percent (18-of-31) in the first half.
UCLA finished at 43.1 percent (25-of-58) for the game.
Johnson netted 22 points to lead top-seeded Arizona (30-4), which was looking for its first Pac-12 Tournament Championship in 12 years. The Wildcats have reached the title game in three of the last four seasons.
After getting off to fast starts in an 82-63 win over Oregon on Thursday and an 84-59 thrashing of Stanford on Friday, UCLA stormed out of the gate again against Arizona.
The Bruins hit 13 of their first 21 shots from the floor and jumped out to a 31-20 lead with 8:33 to go in the opening half.
Arizona, however, answered with a 12-2 run.
Kaleb Tarczewski poured in six points during the surge, which was capped on a Gordon free throw to cut the gap to 33-32 late in the stanza. Johnson's jumper with three seconds left in the half got Arizona within 43-40 heading into the break.
UCLA's first-half score tied Colorado's point total against Arizona in the semifinals and surpassed Utah's (39) in the quarters.
Neither team led by more than five in a tightly-contested second half which featured six ties and eight lead changes.
After an Anderson jumper staked the Bruins to a 57-52 spread with 11:05 to go, Johnson capped a 7-2 burst with a triple to whittle the deficit to 59-58.
Two Anderson free throws knotted the tilt at 68-68 with 3:57 left and the teams traded misses and turnovers until Adams' triple.
The title game featured the Pac-12's best defense in Arizona (57.6 points per game allowed) and the top offensive team in UCLA (82.0 points).Game Notes
UCLA shot 84 percent (21-of-25) from the foul line, while the Wildcats
finished 37.5 percent (6-of-16) from the charity stripe ... Arizona last won
the conference tournament in 2002, its last of four titles in a row.