No. 5 UCLA beats Arizona State for 14th straight win

UCLA’s Jamie Jaquez Jr. handles the ball as Arizona State’s Devan Cambridge defends during the second half on Thursday night in Tempe, Ariz. (AP Photo/Darryl Webb)

Arizona State’s Warren Washington blocks a shot by UCLA’s Jaime Jaquez Jr. during the first half on Thursday night in Tempe, Ariz. (AP Photo/Darryl Webb)

UCLA’s Tyger Campbell handles the ball as Arizona State’s Frankie Collins defends during the first half on Thursday night in Tempe, Ariz. Campbell matched his season high with 22 points as the fifth-ranked Bruins rallied for a 74-62 win. (AP Photo/Darryl Webb)

Arizona State’s Austin Nunez passes the ball after losing control of it during the first half of their game against UCLA on Thursday night in Tempe, Ariz. (AP Photo/Darryl Webb)

Arizona State’s Warren Washington, right, slaps the ball away from UCLA’s Adem Bona during the first half on Thursday night in Tempe, Ariz. (AP Photo/Darryl Webb)

UCLA’s Jaime Jaquez Jr. reaches for a steal on Arizona State’s Desmond Cambridge Jr. during the first half on Thursday night in Tempe, Ariz. (AP Photo/Darryl Webb)

Arizona State’s Desmond Cambridge Jr. changes directions as UCLA’s Tyger Campbell defends during the first half on Thursday night in Tempe, Ariz. (AP Photo/Darryl Webb)

UCLA’s Tyger Campbell drives around Arizona State’s Austin Nunez during the first half on Thursday night in Tempe, Ariz. Campbell matched his season high with 22 points as the fifth-ranked Bruins rallied for a 74-62 win. (AP Photo/Darryl Webb)

Arizona State’s Warren Washington (22) shoots as UCLA’s Adem Dona defends during the second half on Thursday night in Tempe, Ariz. (AP Photo/Darryl Webb)

UCLA’s Kenneth Nwuba reacts to a referee’s call against him during the first half of their game against Arizona State on Thursday night in Tempe, Ariz. (AP Photo/Darryl Webb)

UCLA’s Jamie Jaquez Jr. reaches for the ball as Arizona State’s Devan Cambridge drives during the second half on Thursday night in Tempe, Ariz. (AP Photo/Darryl Webb)

UCLA’s Jamie Jaquez Jr., left, is greeted by Dylan Andrews after hitting a 3-pointer late in the second half of their game against Arizona State on Thursday night in Tempe, Ariz. (AP Photo/Darryl Webb)

Arizona State’s Devan Cambridge dunks between UCLA’s Kenneth Nwuba, left, and Jamie Jaquez Jr. during the second half on Thursday night in Tempe, Ariz. (AP Photo/Darryl Webb)

UCLA coach Mick Cronin gives advice to Jaylen Clark during the second half of their game against Arizona State on Thursday night in Tempe, Ariz. (AP Photo/Darryl Webb)

Arizona State’s Austin Nunez, left, pushes away from UCLA’s Jaylen Clark during the second half on Thursday night in Tempe, Ariz. (AP Photo/Darryl Webb)

UCLA’s Jamie Jaquez Jr., right, chest-bumps Tyger Campbell after Jaquez hit a 3-pointer late in the second half of their game against Arizona State on Thursday night in Tempe, Ariz. (AP Photo/Darryl Webb)

Arizona State’s Frankie Collins, middle, gets fouled as he drives between UCLA’s Dylan Andrews, left, and Adem Bona during the second half on Thursday night in Tempe, Ariz. (AP Photo/Darryl Webb)

UCLA’s Jamie Jaquez Jr. gestures during the second half of their comeback win against Arizona State on Thursday night in Tempe, Ariz. (AP Photo/Darryl Webb)

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By JACK MAGRUDER The Associated Press

TEMPE, Ariz. — Few things please UCLA basketball coach Mick Cronin more than a hard-fought road win in conference play, and the Bruins gave him plenty to smile about to begin their challenging two-game set in the desert.

Tyger Campbell matched a season high with 22 points, David Singleton had a season-high 21 and No. 5 UCLA extended its winning streak to 14 games, beating Arizona State, 74-62, on Thursday night.

Jamie Jaquez, bothered by foul trouble, scored five of his 12 points in the final 2½ minutes as the Bruins took control. UCLA closed on a 16-2 run after Frankie Collins’ 3-pointer with 6:13 left gave Arizona State a 60-58 lead.

“If you are going to win conferences, you have to win tough games against good teams,” Cronin said. “We just have great character. Tyger Campbell is just such a tough winner. I had to put the ball in his hands tonight because the pressure and their style defensively, especially tonight … it was hard to run anything. It’s hard to complete a pass.”

The Bruins (17-2, 8-0 Pac-12) overcame a six-point deficit in the final 11 minutes and opened a two-game lead in the conference standings over Arizona State (15-4, 6-2), which had won four in a row.

“I just go out and try to win and take what the defense gives me,” said Campbell, who was 7 for 11 from the field and 8 for 9 from the free-throw line. “Jaime got a couple of quick fouls, so I kind of had to look for my shot a little more.”

UCLA has the third-longest active Division I winning streak, behind No. 18 Charleston (19) and No. 24 Florida Atlantic (17). The Bruins have not lost since falling 80-75 to Baylor on Nov. 20 in the Las Vegas Main Event.

“It’s been fun flying under the radar the last couple of months,” Cronin said. “Because of what happened in Vegas, I think people gave up on us.”

Desmond Cambridge Jr. had 15 points and D.J. Horne scored all 14 of his points in the final half for ASU. Warren Washington had nine points, seven rebounds and three blocked shots. The Sun Devils were off to their best conference start in 41 seasons.

UCLA shot 50% from the floor, including a 60.7% mark in the second half. Singleton had 13 points in the second half.

“I’m not saying we’re unbeatable, but we’re always going to have confidence and stay connected,” Singleton said. “Everyone is telling me to keep shooting it. The game plan was to hit the open guy, and I just happened to be the open guy tonight.”

Cambridge followed a steal and 360-degree dunk with a 3-pointer from the right baseline for a 48-42 lead with 14:09 remaining, the biggest lead for either team to that point.

There were 14 lead changes, and neither team led by more than six until late.

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“This tells us any given night we can lace them up and play with anybody,” Horne said. “It was a different flow in the second half. I think they made some defensive adjustments.”

POLL IMPLICATIONS

ASU could have found its way into the next AP Top 25 had it won. The Sun Devils received the 28th-most votes in the most recent poll. No. 22 Providence, No. 23 Rutgers and No. 25 Arkansas already have lost this week.

Although there is not much room to climb, UCLA strengthened its position in the Top 25 with the late comeback win entering its game at Arizona on Saturday. No. 6 Gonzaga, No. 7 Texas and No. 8 Xavier have lost this week.

BIG PICTURE

UCLA: The Bruins survived a speed bump in the most challenging portion of their Pac-12 schedule. They conclude a three-game trip with games at No. 11 Arizona and USC before returning home on Feb. 2 against Washington. … Starting guard Amari Bailey missed his sixth consecutive game but is nearing a return, Cronin said, which will further deepen the roster.

Arizona State: The Sun Devils were that close to their fourth victory over a top-five team in Bobby Hurley’s eight seasons, but the close should bolster their NCAA resume.

UP NEXT

UCLA plays at No. 11 Arizona on Saturday at 11 a.m. PT.

Arizona State hosts USC on Saturday at 7 p.m. PT.

WHAT A GAME

No. 5 @UCLAMBB remains unbeaten in conference play after thriller vs. ASU.#Pac12MBB | @sproutsfm pic.twitter.com/WTHFJrblxB

— Pac-12 Conference (@pac12) January 20, 2023

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