Los Angeles, CA (SportsNetwork.com) - Norman Powell scored 23 points to help UCLA remain unbeaten at home in Pac-12 play and knock off No. 11 Utah, 69-59.
The Bruins lost three players to the first round of the NBA draft in 2014 and haven't been able to replace the productivity that Kyle Anderson, Jordan Adams and Zach LaVine provided. They are in the midst of one of the worst seasons in recent memory, though Thursday's upset over Utah was certainly a step in the right direction.
Bryce Alford had 14 points and seven assists and Isaac Hamilton scored 11 for UCLA, which exacted revenge from an embarrassing 71-39 loss to Utah on Jan. 4. Alford went scoreless on 0-for-10 shooting in that game.
"We did a good job in the first half to start the game and then we were terrific in the second half," UCLA coach Steve Alford said.
UCLA (12-9, 4-4 Pac-12) snapped its two-game losing skid.
Delon Wright and Brandon Taylor gave 15 and 14 points, respectively, for the Utes (16-4, 6-2), who may have lost more than a game. Freshman center Jakob Poeltl, one of the best young 7-footers in college basketball, left the game with an apparent foot injury.
"UCLA outplayed us and out-scrapped us. We only really played hard enough for about five minutes all game," Utah coach Larry Krystkowiak said.
Powell scored six straight points and eight total during UCLA's prolonged 12-0 run to open the second half. His layup to cap the flurry at 13:00 made it 45-30.
Taylor scored their next eight points around three UCLA free throws to cut the deficit to 10, but Hamilton countered with a layup, three-point play and triple from the top of the key over the next 1 1/2 minutes to help the Bruins keep Utah at arm's length.
Utah led by seven points early on before UCLA stormed back to take a 33-30 lead into halftime.
Utah fell to 2-2 over its last four games following a seven-game win streak ... UCLA center Tony Parker (back) returned from a two-game absence and grabbed six rebounds ... UCLA improved to 3-0 at Pauley Pavilion against Utah since the Utes joined the PAc-12. The Bruins have won those three games by a total of 51 points.