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WSU women get first win at Pauley Pavilion, top No. 17 UCLA

By The Associated Press
Published: February 23, 2023, 9:23pm
2 Photos
Washington State center Bella Murekatete (55) celebrates with teammates after a 62-55 win over UCLA in an NCAA college basketball game in Los Angeles, Thursday, Feb. 23, 2023.
Washington State center Bella Murekatete (55) celebrates with teammates after a 62-55 win over UCLA in an NCAA college basketball game in Los Angeles, Thursday, Feb. 23, 2023. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis) Photo Gallery

LOS ANGELES — Bella Murekatete had 16 points and 10 rebounds, Tara Wallack made a key 3-pointer with 24.7 seconds left and Washington State beat No. 17 UCLA 62-55 on Thursday night for its first-ever win at Pauley Pavilion.

Washington State entered 0-34 against the Bruins in Los Angeles — with just 10 wins in 80 overall games. The Cougars (19-9, 9-8 Pac-12) need to win at USC on Saturday to post back-to-back winning seasons in Pac-12 play for the first time in program history.

Washington State used a 12-0 run in the third quarter to turn a four-point deficit into a 37-29 lead. Murekatete made two free throws with 1:21 left in the quarter to give the Cougars a nine-point lead before UCLA closed to 45-40 entering the fourth.

Wallack’s 3-ponter started a 6-0 run and UCLA was undone by closing on 2-of-12 shooting in the final five minutes.

Wallack finished with two 3-pointers and 15 points for Washington State, which matched last season’s record-setting win total. Charlisse Leger-Walker had 12 points, six rebounds and four assists, and Murekatete recorded her 12th career double-double.

Washington State jumped out to a 13-4 lead as UCLA didn’t make its first field goal until Gabriela Jaquez got a friendly roll with 1:40 left in the first quarter. The Bruins missed their opening 13 shots of the game. UCLA’s six points were its fewest in any quarter this season.

UCLA scored 10 unanswered points during a 14-4 run to close the first half for a tie at 25-all.

Charisma Osborne led UCLA (21-8, 10-7) with 14 points and eight rebounds. Kiki Rice added 10 points.

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