By Jason A. Vrtis
Arizona Daily Wildcat February 16, 1996
Revenge is what they wanted and revenge is what they got.
The Arizona women's basketball team gave up a 17-point lead to the UCLA Bruins and lost on Jan. 20, but last night it did nothing of the sort, crushing the Bruins 95-66 in front of 1,547 fans last night at McKale Center.
The Wildcats used balanced scoring and a tenacious defense to control the tempo of the game - never allowing the Bruins to get into any offensive rhythm. Arizona never trailed in the ballgame and dominated every other aspect of it.
With the win, Arizona improves to 15-5 overall and 6-5 in the Pacific 10 Conference. UCLA falls to 10-11 overall and 5-7 in the Pac-10.
"This was a great win for our team and our program," UA head coach Joan Bonvicini said. "They exceeded my expectations tonight and really stepped it up a notch."
Forwards Adia Barnes and Andrea Constand paced the Wildcats with 29 and 25 points respectively and both chipped in with six rebounds a piece.
"This is one of our first games where we played 40 minutes of good basketball," Barnes said. "I played smart and was able to stay out of foul trouble."
Senior point guard Brenda Pantoja consistently broke UCLA's press as she scored nine points and dished out 16 assists. A mark that tied her career high.
"We got spooked in the first game with their press, but we didn't get spooked tonight," Pantoja said.
Arizona used their patented pressure defense to limit UCLA's top scorer Nickey Hilbert to just six points. The rest of the Bruins didn't fair much better as they shot just 31 percent from the field for the game.
Arizona shot 57 percent from the field as it was able to get many easy baskets due to the solid transition play of Pantoja and sophomore guard DeAngela Minter, who scored 13 points.
Reserve sophomore center Marte Alexander came off the bench to score nine points and grabbed a team-high 10 rebounds in place of senior Jacque Clark who was hampered by foul trouble.
The Wildcats also outrebounded the Bruins 46-38 despite UCLA's height advantage in the front court.
UCLA was led by senior center Zrinka Kristich's 11 points and eight rebounds. Ricarda Kuypers chipped in 11 points of her own while senior forward Kisa Hughes scored 11 points and grabbed a team-high nine rebounds.