Lonzo Ball Leads No. 14 UCLA to Wooden Legacy Title Over Texas A&M
Freshman point guard Lonzo Ball went for 16 points, 10 assists and 5 rebounds and No. 14 UCLA ended the game on a 9-2 run as the Bruins edged Texas A&M, 74-67, Sunday night to win the Wooden Legacy championship in Anaheim, Calif.
Isaac Hamilton added 17 points and 7 rebounds and T.J. Leaf and Bryce Alford scored 13 points apiece for UCLA (7-0), which remained perfect on the season entering games against UC-Riverside on Wednesday and at No. 1 Kentucky on Saturday. Alford’s three-pointer put the Bruins up 70-65 with 55 seconds remaining.
Admon Gilder led Texas A&M (4-2) with 17 points, Tyler Davis tallied 16 points and 8 assists and Toni Trocha-Morelos had 11 points and 9 rebounds.
Hamilton and Davis were named to the All-Tournament team, while Ball was named tournament MVP.
“He’s special and this team I think has a chance to be special,” UCLA coach Steve Alford said of Ball. “So everything we do, we’re doing it together. He’s the starting point guard and he kind of gets us going us it at both ends. And tonight we were a little bit slow doing that and then I thought he really put it into a whole other level.”
“He’s learning, too. He’s a terrific talent but he’s going to continue to get better. that might be scary but he’s going to get better.”
Ball is currently projected as the No. 16 pick in the NBA Draft by DraftExpress.com.
“He’s special,” said one NBA scout.
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Adam Zagoria is a New York Times contributor and Basketball Insider who covers basketball at all levels. He is the author of two books and is an award-winning journalist whose articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Sports Illustrated, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide.
A veteran Ultimate Frisbee player, he has competed in numerous National and World Championships and, perhaps more importantly, his teams won the Westchester Summer League (WSL) championships in 2011 and 2013.
He lives in Manhattan with his wife and children.