Tulsa was trying to repeat history on Friday night against UCLA. 20 years ago, the Golden Hurricane upset the Bruins in the 1994 NCAA tournament en route to a surprising Sweet Sixteen appearance.
There would be no repeat on Friday in San Diego, as the Bruins were just a bit better than the Golden Hurricane in every facet, ending Tulsa's season with a 76-59 win.
Tulsa came into the game winners of 11 straight, but couldn't do many of the little things against UCLA, such as holding onto rebounds at key moments or even inbound the ball cleanly. It wasn't a typical Tulsa performance, but with eight sophomores on the roster, perhaps youth played a part in the uneven performance.
D'Andre Wright led Tulsa with 18 points while James Woodard had 11 points. Rashad Smith chipped in nine points. Tulsa got no production from third-leading scorer Shaquille Harrison, who struggled with foul trouble in the first half and finished with five turnovers.
Tulsa shot just 36.8 percent for the game and had 16 turnovers.
UCLA was led by Jordan Adams' 21 points. Norman Powell had 15 points and Tony Parker added 11 points off the bench. Travis Wear added 10 points for the Bruins, which shot 46 percent from the field.
The Golden Hurricane trailed for most of the first half, falling behind by as many as nine points. However, Tulsa used an 11-2 run, with all the points coming from Wright and Woodard, to tie the score at 30 with 1:40 left in the first half. UCLA went into the locker room leading 35-30.
After a sluggish first half, the normally-potent Bruins offense came to life, ripping off a 10-2 run to start the half and extend the lead to 45-32. Wright responded in a big way for Tulsa, hitting a couple shots in the lane, as well as a 3-pointer, to pull the Hurricane back to within nine at 47-38 with 13:29 remaining.
UCLA once again pushed the lead back to 14, but Tulsa had one final push in it, cutting the Bruins lead to 59-54 on a Wright jumper with 4:54 remaining. Then Powell took over for UCLA and put the game away.
Down 61-54, Tulsa's Shaquille Harrison was unable to inbound the ball under the Tulsa basket and lofted a pass into the backcourt for Woodard. Powell tipped the ball away, kept it inbounds and then went in for a layup and made it while being fouled by Woodard. On the very next possession, Powell got another steal and hit Adams for a 3-pointer. Suddenly, UCLA was back up 13 with 3:56 remaining, and the Hurricane was done.
UCLA closed the game on a 17-5 run after Tulsa cut the lead to 59-54.