No. 19 UCLA gets back on track, slams Waves by 47

No. 19 UCLA gets back on track, slams Waves by 47

After dropping back-to-back games against Top 25 opponents in Las Vegas last weekend, 19th-ranked UCLA took out its frustrations on visiting Pepperdine on Wednesday, flattening the Waves 100-53 in Los Angeles.

The Bruins (4-2) slipped up in Sin City against both Illinois and Baylor, performances after which coach Mick Cronin criticized the team’s defensive performance. Play on that side of the ball was no issue in UCLA’s return home.

Pepperdine (4-2) shot just 21 of 60 from the floor and committed 17 turnovers under heavy duress from the Bruins defense. David Singleton, Jaylen Clark and Dylan Andrews each swiped two steals to help contribute to UCLA’s 28-5 advantage in points off turnovers.

Offensively, the Bruins were balanced and efficient.

Six UCLA scorers finished in double figures, led by Amari Bailey’s career-high 19 points. Bailey also shot 3 of 3 from 3-point range, pacing UCLA to a 10-of-20 night collectively from deep, and passed for a game-high four assists.

Jaime Jaquez Jr. added 13 of his 17 points in the second half to cap a 7-of-10 shooting night and grabbed eight rebounds. Clark tallied 12 points, and Tyger Campbell and Adem Bona each scored 11 points — with Bona snaring seven rebounds.

Singleton came off the bench for 13 points, hitting one of his two 3-pointers in the second half as part of a 7-for-10 Bruins deluge from long range that fueled their 57-24 edge after intermission.

Wednesday marked the Bruins’ first 100-point game since a 100-79 rout of Long Beach State on Nov. 15, 2021.

The Waves hung tough through the first two media timeouts of the first half, trailing just 16-14 after a back-and-forth first eight minutes.

A 15-2 run after the under-12-minute timeout made it 31-16 UCLA and put the game away. The closest Pepperdine would get from there was nine points with three minutes left in the first half.

Houston Mallette and Jan Zidek each scored 13 points to lead Pepperdine, with Mallette matching the night’s game high of eight rebounds. Maxwell Lewis added 10 points.