SALT LAKE CITY — Jules Bernard scored 11 of his 19 points in the second half, making all four of his field goals, as UCLA broke away to defeat Utah 76-61 on Thursday night.
Bernard finished on 7-of-10 shooting, including four 3-pointers, to lead four Bruins into double figures. Johnny Juzang scored 18 points, also dropping in four 3s, Cody Riley 15 points and Jaime Jaquez Jr. 11 for UCLA (17-5, 13-3 Pacific-12 Conference), which has won four in a row.
Branden Carlson led Utah (9-11, 6-10) with 17 points, four after halftime, while Riley Battin and Ian Martinez added 10 each. The Utes have lost their last four games.
Riley opened the second half with back-to-back baskets on UCLA’s first two possessions as the Bruins opened a double-digit lead that they kept the rest of the game. UCLA, after shooting 54% in the first half, stepped it up to 57% shooting in the second, making 17 of 30 from the floor with five of nine 3-pointers and just four turnovers.
UCLA escaped with a 72-70 win at Pauley Pavilion when the teams last met on New Year’s Eve, and didn’t let Utah get close enough for an upset on Thursday.
Utah was playing without 6-foot-9 forward Mikael Jantunen, who has beem in quarantine since returning from a stint on the Finnish national team last week. Point guard Rylan Jones played for the first time since missing four games with a shoulder injury and dished seven assists but was scoreless in 17 minutes.
The Bruins are at Colorado on Saturday. Utah plays host to No. 19 USC on Saturday.
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