UCLA faces St. Bonaventure in NCAA First Four Game

UCLA faces St. Bonaventure in NCAA First Four Game

"It's a tough time for us", Alford said. The Bruins have not won a national title since the 1995 season. The Bruins had hoped for a better seed, but will have to earn the chance to face Florida (20-12) on Thursday in Dallas as part of the East region. One of the Bonnies' biggest concerns is Courtney Stockard, who suffered a hamstring injury during the Atlantic 10 Tournament. This could be the matchup that tilts the game in favor of the Bruins, if Holiday doesn't do it himself.

UCLA makes its fifth trip to NCAA Tournament in six years and looks to win at least two games for the fourth straight time when it begins play against risky St. Bonaventure on Tuesday in the First Four at Dayton, Ohio - in a battle of 11th seeds to open the East Region. The guard is averaging a career-high 3.6 turnovers per game, which is also somewhat a result of increased minutes.

"Would we like to be playing two games instead of three?"

The Bonnies were second in the 14-team Atlantic 10 Conference and had a 13-game winning streak ended with an 82-70 loss to Davidson in a semifinal of the Atlantic 10 Championship Saturday.

Alumni as well as some parents of St. Bonaventure students gathered at the Relief Pitcher bar in Binghamton to show some support for the Bonnies. Combined with Holiday and Goloman, the Bruins shouldn't be overwhelmed by the moment, even if they had to fly to southwestern OH to face an unfamiliar opponent in an unfamiliar arena.

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UCLA must take the longest route possible for coach Steve Alford to finally go past the Sweet 16 in the NCAA Tournament after reaching that point in three of his first four years as Bruins coach.

"I think our resume speaks for itself", said point guard Jaylen Adams, who averages 19.8 points per game.

The Bruins participation in the tournament means their players will miss at least three days of classes in the final week of instruction in the winter quarter. After missing out on the Big Dance in each of the past five seasons, it is good to see the Bonnies competing in the tournament once again, even if they are in the First Four. The Bonnies qualify because they have one of the best backcourts in the country with seniors Jaylen Adams and Matt Mobley. The Bruins first beat Stanford in the 4/5 game.

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