As the amount of times we hear “Dreams and Nightmares” in Pauley Pavilion dwindles, the team and crowd’s energy grows. With only two more games left at home, Bruin fans sold-out the arena on Jaime Jaquez Jr.’s birthday (February 18th) following Amari Bailey’s birthday (February 17th). Smiles and cheers filled the stands and the court as the Bruins won by a 35-point lead.
Saturday, February 18th, was UCLA’s MBB game against UC Berkeley ending with a score of 78-43, adding even more heft to the claim that UCLA is the #1 public university. With the Bruins racking up 38 points in the first half, giving them a 23-point lead, many players were able to get on the court for more time than in previous games. Dylan Andrews (#2), Will McClendon (#4), and Mac Etienne (#12) were each on the court for 17 minutes. McClendon assisted Andrews in a layup, helped Singleton (#34) score a three-pointer, and made a jumper assisted by Singleton, exhibiting an interesting dynamic between #4 and #34.
To celebrate Black History Month, during halftime Heartbeat Music & Performing Arts Academy performed with an amazing marching drumline and majorette performance. Members of the Black Student-Athlete Alliance made an appearance on the court, bringing awareness to the club and the community they have cultivated.
To end this celebratory night, with the score at 75-42, Russell Stong IV (#43) rose from the bench and strutted onto the court, following multiple “We Want Russell” chants. With two minutes to the end of the 2nd half, Stong contributed with a crowd-thundering free throw within the last two minutes of the game.
The two top scorers of the night, Jaime Jaquez Jr. (#24) with 20 points and Amari Bailey (#5) with 16 points, joined local reporters in the press room; when asked about how their birthdays affected their playing tonight, Jaime Jaquez Jr. answered with “our birthdays played a big factor in how we played tonight… we were excited to get out there and celebrate.”
[They were] on [their] grind and now [they] got what [they] deserve – “Dreams and Nightmares”