UCLA Olympic Sports Update, January 9th

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Much has happened with these following sports in the past week…
WOMEN’S BASKETBALL –  With half of the season gone, Cori Close’s team is doing about as well as could be expected, considering that two of her best players, players that could have made a difference, Jasmine Dixon and Atonye Nyingifa, are sitting out the year with torn ACLs.

These Lady Bruin hoopsters went into the desert this past weekend and split two games, losing to Arizona on Thursday, 74-66, then turning around to beat Arizona State two days later, 64-48.

Against the Wildcats in Tucson, it was a seesaw battle throught much of the game, UCLA leading by two points at halftime and by six points midway through the second half.

Then the roof caved in as Arizona went on an 11-2 run and scored the game’s last six points to put the Bruins, who scored only six points in the final ten minutes, away.

Thea Lemberger led UCLA with 17 points, while Markel Walker earned a double-double with 12 points and 12 rebounds. Rebekah Gardner contributed 12 points of her own to go with her eight rebounds.

They then went up against a ten-win Sun Devil team inTempe, and were impressive in their victory, Lemberger leading again with 22 points, including a career-high thre 3-pointers. Walker had her second straight double-double with 15 points and 13 rebounds, and Gardner completed what was a good Bruin trifecta with 16 points and, for the second consecutive night, eight boards.

This split against the Arizona schools leaves UCLA with an overall record of 7-8 and 2-2 in the Pac-12 Conference. Their involvement in the Crosstown Rivalry will begin this Saturday, when they host USC at the John Wooden Center at 2:00 p.m.

MEN’S VOLLEYBALL –  Beginning the final year of Al Scates’ 50-season reign, the men’s volleyballers started their season okay, beating Cal State Northridge 3-1 and Ohio State in a three-game sweep before losing to UC Irvine in the finals of the UCSB/asics Invitational.

The scores of the match versus UC Irvine were 23-25, 25-21, 35-33, and 25-18.

Their record stands at 2-1 in the early going, with their next outing being in Honolulu, HI, for the Outrigger Hotels Invitational this weekend. They will begin that tournament by playing Lewis College there this Thursday.

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