Fogg Warning: Cats vs. Bruins, Part 3 in Pac-10 Tournamentby Javier Morales on Mar. 06, 2010, under Sports
NOTE: FOLLOW JAVIER’S REPORTS FROM THE PAC-10 TOURNAMENT AT THE STAPLES CENTER IN LOS ANGELES STARTING THURSDAY
UCLA has a Fogg warning in Los Angeles starting at 1 p.m. Thursday.
That’s when Kyle Fogg, who scored 51 points against the Bruins this season, and his Arizona teammates will play the Bruins in the quarterfinal round of the Pac-10 tournament at the Staples Center. Fogg, a prime candidate for this week’s Pac-10 Player of the Week, and the Wildcats are the No. 4 seed of the tournament with a 10-8 conference record.
UCLA (8-10) is the No. 5 seed by virtue of its sweep of Oregon State (8-10) during the regular season.
The No. 6 Beavers, who swept Arizona, will play in the opposite bracket against No. 3 Washington (11-7). The only other team to sweep the Cats this year — No. 9 Washington State (6-12) — plays No. 8 Oregon in the play-in game on Wednesday night at the Staples Center. The winner plays No. 1 Cal (13-5).
Fogg, a sophomore guard playing his best of the season, was fouled on a three-point attempt and made three free throws against USC with .2 seconds remaining to send the game into overtime Saturday. The UA won 86-84 in double overtime, thanks in part to Fogg’s 18 points, which included an 11-for-15 performance from the free throw line.
In the narrow victories over UCLA and USC this weekend, Fogg scored 34 points.
“Kyle made those last three free throws under a tremendous amount of pressure,” UA coach Sean Miller said. “Had he missed any of them it would have been game over. To see him make all those shots really was a testament to his confidence and concentration.”
Fogg’s line against the Bruins this season (combined totals):
Field Goals: 17-24 (70.8 percent). Three-pointers: 8-11 (72.7 percent). Free throws: 9-13 (69.2). Points: 51. Minutes: 69.
“We did a poor job of locating him in the zone in the second half and not figuring out that when the guy is hot that you have to get to him,” UCLA coach Ben Howland was quoted as saying in the Los Angeles Times after Thursday’s game.
UCLA (13-17 overall) is always dangerous in Los Angeles, but the Bruins are limping into the tournament.
The Bruins are without forwards James Keefe (shoulder surgery) and Reeves Nelson, who sat out the last two weeks because of a torn retina in his left eye. Forward Nikola Dragovic is playing with ankle and shoulder injuries.
According to the Los Angeles Times, Nelson said he was unsure whether he would play again this season. His grandmother has two detached retinas and there is concern that the family history could make Nelson more vulnerable.
“I can understand the apprehension and the anxiety that goes with it because of how he plays,” Howland told the Los Angeles Times. “He’s not a guard running around out there; he’s got his nose in there, literally and figuratively. He took a head hit in Wednesday’s practice, and it may have given him pause.”
Howland said Nelson, who is averaging 11 points and 5.5 rebounds, will make the decision to play in the tournament. He has not played since a Feb. 20 game against Washington.
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