LOS ANGELES (AP) — Prince Ali scored 23 points and UCLA rebounded from consecutive losses to ranked opponents with an 80-61 rout of Hawaii on Wednesday night.
Kris Wilkes added 16 points for the Bruins (5-2), who made 10 3-pointers. They hit 11 in a 16-point loss to then-No. 7 North Carolina last week at the Las Vegas Invitational. That followed a 20-point loss to No. 11 Michigan State.READ MORE: Newport Beach, Long Beach And Other OC Communities Brace For Incoming High Tides And Potential Flooding
The Bruins led by 20 points in the first half, when Ali didn’t miss a shot. He made all six of his field-goal attempts and was 4-of-4 from the free throw line.
Ali scored UCLA’s final basket of the game on a huge one-handed dunk over 7-foot Dawson Carper.
UCLA opened the game on an 18-5 run, hitting four of their eight first-half 3-pointers during the stretch.
Wilkes had a highlight dunk with a one-handed jam late in the first half after freshman Moses Brown and Jalen Hill dunked.
Jaylen Hands had 11 of UCLA’s 16 assists.
Owen Hulland scored 14 points for Hawaii (4-4) in the first meeting in 18 years between the teams. The Rainbow Warriors’ first eight games have all been decided by double digits, with the Bruins handing them their worst loss so far.
The Rainbow Warriors were held to 27 percent shooting in the first half.READ MORE: One Person Found Dead In South LA Homeless Encampment Fire
UCLA opened the second half in similarly dominant fashion. The Bruins outscored the Rainbow Warriors 17-9 and extended their lead to 62-35. They did it with balanced scoring: Cody Riley had six points, Ali added five and Wilkes four. Brown got things started with a putback dunk.
Jack Purchase and Brocke Stepteau added 10 points each for Hawaii.
Hawaii: The Rainbow Warriors return home to play seven straight home games after concluding a four-game visit to the mainland. They played one game in Arizona and four in Southern California. They went 1-2 at the Wooden Legacy tournament over Thanksgiving.
UCLA: The Bruins were knocked out of the rankings after losing to Top 15-ranked teams in consecutive games at the Las Vegas Invitational for the first time since Nov. 22-23, 2011, at the Maui Invitational. They’ll try to get back into the Top 25 with wins against four straight home opponents: Hawaii, Loyola Marymount, Notre Dame and Belmont, which owned a combined 21-4 record coming into this week.
Hawaii: Hosts Hawaii-Hilo on Dec. 8.
UCLA: Hosts undefeated Loyola Marymount on Sunday. The teams last played in 2011.MORE NEWS: Massive Rescue Effort Underway After Multi-Story Building Partially Collapses In South Florida
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