- Associated Press - Sunday, December 4, 2016

LOS ANGELES (AP) - Monique Billings had 16 points and eight rebounds to help No. 10 UCLA rout Hawaii 72-49 on Sunday for its 17th consecutive victory at Pauley Pavilion.

UCLA (6-1) raced to a 19-2 run, and Billings scored 12 of those points - mostly inside the paint. The Bruins led 21-3 after the first quarter. Hawaii (2-6) missed 10 of 11 shots in the period.

Billings also had three assists, three steals and two blocks.

“I would say it’s the focus, having a will to dominate,” Billings said. “… Just be tough every possession.”

Hawaii (2-6) had great trouble setting up plays offensively and breaking UCLA’s fullcourt press. Guard Sarah Toeaina led the Rainbow Wahine with 16 points, and Briana Harris had 10 points, all in the second half. Hawaii suited up and played just seven players.

Nicole Kornet hit a buzzer-beating 3-pointer at the end of the second quarter to give UCLA a 45-17 lead at halftime. She and teammate Kari Korver had a high-flying celebration afterward.

“It went in, it was fun and it was a good way to end the half,” Korbut said.

The Bruins had as much as a 33-point lead in the third quarter.

Hawaii improved in the second half and outscored UCLA 32-27 in the third and fourth quarters combined.

“We started to believe that we could at least complete with them, maybe not beat them but compete with them,” Hawaii coach Laura Beeman said. “I also think UCLA held the reigns back a little to work their stuff, and that allowed us to get in a little rhythm a little bit. I think we competed better in the second half and didn’t turn the ball over as much.”

BIG PICTURE

Hawaii played back-to-back Top-10 opponents in Mississippi State and UCLA, giving it an opportunity to test its mettle against the country’s best. Hawaii must work on breaking a fullcourt press and its interior defense.

UCLA didn’t get much out of the game except that it throttled an opponent it was expected to and continued its home dominance at Pauley Pavilion. The Bruins have 21 straight wins over unranked teams at home.

POLL IMPLICATIONS

UCLA is likely to stay in the Top 10 after its lone game of the week.

QUOTE OF THE GAME

“Right after our practice ended … the whole team and all of our scout guys were totally cheering them on. They’re a great bunch of young men, and we’ve appreciated the support of their coaching staff. I honestly think there’s not a better men’s point guard and women’s point guard in all of college basketball. It’s just a fun time to be a part of UCLA basketball.” - UCLA coach Cori Close on the success of the men’s and women’s teams and watching the end of UCLA’s win over Kentucky on Saturday

STAT OF THE GAME

UCLA held Hawaii to just three points in the first quarter, the fewest points allowed in a quarter since the women’s game instituted four quarters instead of two halves last season.

UP NEXT

Hawaii returns home and is off for a week before hosting Hawaii Pacific on Dec. 11. Then it’s back to its usual schedule logging plenty of air miles as it plays at Nevada and Boise State.

UCLA is off for another week before it hosts Michigan on Dec. 11. After that, the Bruins play three consecutive road games - at UC Santa Barbara, South Carolina and North Carolina AT&T.;


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