UCLA pulls off overtime upset over Alabama, moves to Elite 8 for first time since 2008

ByMahmoud Mohamed KABC logo
Monday, March 29, 2021
UCLA guard Johnny Juzang drives on Alabama forward Kenneth Nwuba in the first half of a Sweet 16 game in the NCAA men's college basketball tournament
AP Photo/Michael Conroy

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (KABC) -- The No.11 UCLA Bruins upset the 2-seeded Alabama Crimson Tide on Sunday to move on to the Elite 8 for the first time since 2008.

The Bruins pulled off the 88-78 upset in overtime behind Irvine native sophomore Jaime Jaquez who scored 17 points and brought down 8 boards. Sophomore Jules Bernard, a Los Angeles native, scored 17 points with six rebounds.

The Crimson Tide was down three with 4.2 seconds left in regulation when Alabama forward Alex Reese knocked down the game tying three, his only points of the game, to send the game to overtime. But the Bruins took over in overtime outscoring Alabama 23-13 to book their ticket to the next round.

The Bruins will play the top-seeded Wolverines for a spot in the Final Four. UCLA has beaten Michigan in three of their four NCAA Tournament games, including the 1965 national championship in Portland, Oregon.

Sunday's game marked the first time since 2017 that the UCLA men's basketball team (20-9) secured a spot in the Sweet 16 of the NCAA Tournament, after posting a 67-47 victory over No. 14-seed Abilene Christian on Monday.

UCLA registered its third win of this season's NCAA Tournament in five days.

The Bruins next face the Michigan Woverines on Tuesday.

The Bruins had picked up wins over Michigan State (86-60 in OT) last Thursday night in the First Four and versus BYU (73-62) on Saturday evening.

The Bruins are a young team with no seniors - led by sophomore guard Tyger Campbell who is averaging 5.4 assists per game and sophomore Johnny Juzang who is leads the team with 15.1 points per game.

Alabama (26-6) is led this season by senior Herbert Jones, who leads his team in assists, blocks, rebounds and steals and was named SEC Player of the Year and Defensive Player of the Year this season.

The Crimson Tide took care of No.15 Iona in the first round of the NCAA tournament 68-55. They followed that dominating win with another against No.10 Maryland 96-77.