Men's Basketball Grabs Huge Win Over UCLA
Mar. 1, 1998
SEATTLE (AP) - The UCLA Bruins just didn't think it was fair that time stood still.
Washington's Todd MacCulloch made two free throws with 2.1 seconds left to give the Huskies a 95-94 victory Sunday. He got the line when UCLA's J.R. Henderson was called for holding as Washington was trying to inbound the ball.
"I've never seen a dead-ball situation determine a game before," Bruins coach Steve Lavin said. "It would've been nice to see the game decided by the players."
"You're not supposed to lose because of calls like that," UCLA's Toby Bailey said.
MacCulloch hit both free throws, lifting Washington to the upset of the 18th-ranked Bruins and keeping its NCAA tournament hopes alive. The victory also broke the Huskies' 10-game losing streak against the Bruins.
Kris Johnson's 3-pointer with 12 seconds left gave UCLA a one-point lead, but Henderson fouled out holding MacCulloch as the Huskies attempted to inbound from underneath their own basket.
"I tried to close my hand so that the refs could see that I wasn't holding, but obviously that didn't work," Henderson said.
"He was holding me and they called a foul," MacCulloch said. "There's nothing in the rules that says you can't get called for a foul in the final five seconds."
Johnson missed a half-court heave as time expired and hundreds of fans stormed the court at Hec Edmundson Pavilion.
"We must be cursed," Johnson said after the Bruins rallied from two 16-point deficits early in the second half. "We left it all out on the court today."
Washington, the fourth-place team in the Pac-10, won its first game over a ranked opponent after five defeats.
"It's the most important win we've had since I've been here," said fifth-year Washington coach Bob Bender.
The Huskies are seeking their first NCAA berth since 1986, the longest tournament drought among Pac-10 schools.
MacCulloch scored 25 points for Washington (17-9, 10-7), with Donald Watts adding 15 and Chris Walcott 14.
Bailey scored all of his 32 points in the second half for UCLA (21-7, 11-5), while Henderson had 20 and Johnson 18.
"I was upset that I let down my team in the first half," Bailey said. "That's the main reason I came out inspired in the second half."
Washington never trailed until the game's final minute, but Bailey paced a late UCLA rally and nearly made the defensive play of the game after Johnson's 3-pointer had put the Bruins ahead.
Bailey tied up Watts with 2.1 seconds left, but the possession arrow pointed Washington's way, setting up MacCulloch's game-winning free throws.
"That kind of bailed me out," Watts said.
Washington led by as many as 19 points three times late in the first half, and UCLA trailed 46-30 at halftime. Washington's last victory over UCLA was Feb. 4, 1993, in Seattle.