The UCLA Bruins held off a late rally from the Michigan St. Spartans to win, 78-76, and advance to the third round of the 2011 NCAA Tournament. The Bruins held a 23-point lead with a little over eight minutes left in the game, but were barely able to hold off a late charge by the Spartans. After Keith Appling hit a three to shrink UCLA's lead to one point, Malcolm Lee sank a free throw following a pulled jersey foul. On the ensuing Michigan State possession, a travel call ended the Spartans' last chance to attempt one last shot.
The Spartans recovered from a first half in which they shot 28.6 percent from the field, but still were under 40 percent (39.7) at game's end. Draymond Green finished with 23 points, 10 rebounds and eight assists. Durrell Summers, who had 12 points at halftime, scored only three points in the second half to finish with 15 on the night. The bench scored 20 points, led by Delvon Rose's 11.
Malcolm Lee and Tyler Honeycutt led the Bruins with 16 points each, but the latter added five rebounds, five assists, three steals and three blocks as well. Reeves Nelson put up a double-double of 12 points and 11 rebounds. Center Joshua Smith added 14 points, but also had an awkward fall in the second half of the game. He got tangled up with a Spartan player, rolled his ankle and bruised his elbow. However, it wasn't serious and he returned to the game shortly thereafter.
The Bruins will face the Florida Gators on Saturday in the third round of the NCAA Tournament.
Here is an updated look at the Southeast Region of the 2011 NCAA Tournament bracket.
No. 1 Pittsburgh def. No. 16 UNC-Asheville, 74-51; will face Butler
No. 8 Butler def. No. 9 Old Dominion, 60-58; will face Pitt
No. 5 Kansas State def. No. 12 Utah State, 73-68; will face Wisconsin
No. 4 Wisconsin def. No. 13 Belmont, 72-58; will face Kansas St.
No. 11 Gonzaga def. No. 6 St. John's, 86-71; will face BYU
No. 3 BYU def. No. 14 Wofford, 74-66; will face Gonzaga
No. 7 UCLA def. No. 10 Michigan State, 78-76; will face Florida
No. 2 Florida def. No. 15 UC-Santa Barbara, 79-51; will face UCLA