LOS ANGELES — Michaela Onyenwere scored a career-high 31 points and No. 10 UCLA used an 8-1 run in overtime to seize control and beat Washington 85-80 on Friday night.
Natalie Chou added 18 points off the bench for the Bruins (17-1, 6-1 Pac-12), who got back on track after losing its first game of the season to USC. UCLA was the only unbeaten team in the country.
The game was tied 70-all after regulation and the Bruins sprinted to a 78-71 lead in the overtime.
Amber Melgoza had 14 points and Missy Peterson added 13 for Washington (10-8, 2-5), which played well but squandered a 15-point, second-quarter lead.
Washington had UCLA frazzled with its zone and pressure, but it couldn’t do much about Onyenwere. No one knew if Onyenwere would play — she missed the loss to USC with an ankle injury — but Huskies coach Jody Wynn said they prepared all week as if she would play.
“We turned the ball over too much and allowed too many second-chance opportunities. To me, that’s the story of the game,” Wynn said. “… At the end of the day, Onyenwere was just too much for us. She just jumped over us, got offensive rebounds or putbacks. I thought we did a great job on their guards. I thought we rattled them in the half court and played well under pressure, all except the second half and third quarter, especially. We made some careless errors. Credit their defense.”
Onyenwere shot 13 of 26 from the field and 5 for 7 from the line.
Chou came up big down the stretch. She made a three-pointer with 44 seconds left from the baseline to give UCLA a 69-68 lead and added a steal with 11 seconds remaining. Onyenwere made one of two free throws for a 70-68 lead, but Melgoza, fouled with 4 seconds left, made both free throws, tying the game and forcing OT.