No. 9 UCLA 58, Oregon St. 48

UCLA coach Nikki Caldwell wants to see more production from her

bench.

The No. 9 Bruins saw a 21-point lead against Oregon State shrink

to seven late in the game with reserves on the floor.

But the starters returned and came to the rescue, helping UCLA

(21-2, 11-1 Pac-10) hold on for a 58-48 win.

”This is a very important learning lesson for our team to

understand that our bench has got to be in sync with everything

that we’re doing and they have to maintain the lead then push it

ahead,” Caldwell said. ”This will be some film they can watch and

they can see and hopefully they’ll be better next time.”

Markel Walker had a season-high 18 points and eight rebounds for

the Bruins, now off to the best conference start in school history.

Jasmine Dixon added 16 points, eight rebounds and four steals for

UCLA, which has allowed more than 60 points just once in its last

six games.

Earlysia Marchbanks had 17 points and four rebounds for Oregon

State (8-16, 1-12). The Bruins scored the first seven points of the

second half to go ahead 35-20 and looked to have put the game away

when Rhema Gardner’s basket with 9:57 remaining put them up

48-27.

”We had to pick up our defensive intensity and make them turn

the ball over more,” Walker said. ”Our traps and our rotation and

pressuring the guards, and making them play faster than they wanted

to.”

The Bruins forced the Beavers into 25 turnovers. UCLA had

17.

Oregon State then scored 14 straight points – the last seven by

Marchbanks, during a stretch of four and a half minutes, to close

within seven with just under five minutes remaining.

But that was as close as the Beavers would get despite UCLA

missing four of its next five free throws, including three straight

misses on the first shot of 1-and-1 opportunities.

It was a breakout game for Walker, who had not scored as many as

15 points since getting 15 in a win against Loyola Marymount on

Dec. 3.

She scored 12 of her 18 Saturday in the second half.

”I thought she played at a level of intensity we’ve been

looking for, and I hope that she builds from this because we’ve got

too tough opponents coming up,” Caldwell said. The Bruins host

California and No. 4 Stanford next week.

”It’s great to see her do other things. She can absolutely

score the basketball, as she did tonight. She’s obviously a great

passer but she’s also been on the boards. That’s an area we’ve

challenged her to be better at and she’s showing that.”

The Bruins finished the game 23 of 54 from the floor, while

Oregon State was 17 of 44. The

Beavers had a 35-33 rebounding edge.

UCLA went ahead for good at 4-2 on Dixon’s basket less than

three minutes into the game. Oregon State’s Angela Misa scored five

straight to get the Beavers within 14-11. The Bruins answered with

six consecutive points, with Doreena Campbell’s 3-pointer giving

UCLA its biggest lead to that point at 20-11.

The Bruins led by 10 several times later in the half and 28-20

at halftime.