LOS ANGELES (AP) — Norman Powell led six players in double figures with 25 points and UCLA routed Montana State 133-78 Friday night, giving Bruins coach Steve Alford a victory in season openers for each of the last 17 years.
Freshman Kevon Looney added 20 points, Bryce Alford had 18, Isaac Hamilton 15 in his first college game after sitting out last season, freshman Thomas Welsh 14 and Tony Parker 11. They helped the Bruins top 100 points in an opener for the first time since Nov. 27, 1993, when they scored 115 against Loyola Marymount.
Danny Robison and Michael Dison added 14 points each for the Bobcats, who were picked to finish 11th in the 12-team Big Sky. Marcus Colbert added 12 and Blake Brumwell 10 in the debut of coach Brian Fish.
The Bobcats’ only lead came at the start of the game, when Colbert hit consecutive 3-pointers to make it 8-5. From there, UCLA outscored them 55-24 to lead 60-24 at halftime.
The Bruins opened the second half on a 26-13 burst, including 13 straight points that extended their lead to 86-45. Alford hit two straight 3-pointers and Powell added one of his own to close the run. Hamilton and Alford teamed to rattle off three straight 3-pointers in the first half.
Powell, the Bruins’ lone returning starter after losing three players in the first round of the NBA draft, dunked off Alford’s alley-oop pass early in the second half.
Montana State was called for 30 fouls and had 22 turnovers. UCLA had 20 fouls and shot 65 percent from the line, one of the few statistics in which the Bobcats topped the Bruins.
UCLA shot 57 percent and owned a 42-26 edge in the paint.
Montana St.: Dropped to 0-3 all-time against UCLA. … Fish spent the previous four years as an assistant at Oregon.
UCLA: The 60 points were the most in a first half since 63 against James Madison on Nov. 15, 2012. … The Bruins had four players in double figures at the break. … Alford hasn’t lost a season opener since Nov. 16, 1997, when he coached at Missouri State. … Toby Bailey, who played on UCLA’s last national title team in 1995, attended the game.
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