Updated Monday, January 14, 2013 at 12:16 AM
LOS ANGELES — In need of a late-game surge, the Washington women's basketball team instead found its energy gauge slipping toward empty.
Leading 14th-ranked UCLA by a point with less than 10 minutes to play, Washington's lack of depth and size proved decisive as the Bruins pulled away late for an 85-68 victory Sunday at Pauley Pavilion.
"We kind of ran out of gas there at the end," UW coach Kevin McGuff said. "UCLA did a nice job of utilizing their depth, and that certainly had an effect late in the game."
The final score suggests a mismatch, yet the game had 14 lead changes and Washington (10-5, 2-2 Pac-12) led 59-58 with 9:30 to play.
UCLA (13-2, 4-0) responded with a 14-4 run in the next four minutes, and the flagging Huskies did not score a bucket in the final five. The Bruins closed the game on a 13-1 burst.
UW, which relies heavily on three-pointers for offense, missed its final six deep attempts (eight of 27 for the game) and sank just five of 12 free throws during the final nine minutes.
"We were in it," McGuff said. "For about 35 minutes, I like the way we competed. We just got a little worn out and didn't finish."
UCLA had five players score in double figures while Washington's five starters all played 30 or more minutes.
"Any player that plays over 35 minutes is going to be tired," said sophomore guard Jazmine Davis, who led the Huskies with 19 points two days after scoring a career-high 37 vs. USC. "It's a constant game of running back and forth. But that's how tough players are made. That's how we're going to create a tough mentality, playing through that."
Freshman Talia Walton scored 18 for the Huskies.
"I get tired, especially being down there and being smaller than all the posts we play," Walton said. "Having to fight with them the entire game, it wears on me."
UCLA outrebounded UW 50-26. Atonye Nyingifa led the Bruins with 17 points. Jasmine Dixon, a 6-0 forward, had 13 points and 11 rebounds. Alyssa Brewer, a 6-3 reserve, had 10 points and nine boards.
"They're big and physical and have a lot of depth, and that kind of wore on us," McGuff said of UCLA. "You could see that down the stretch."
The Huskies rallied from seven points down to take a 34-33 halftime lead, then rebounded from a nine-point deficit to regain the lead with 10:22 left in the second half on a three-pointer by Kristi Kingma.
After UW went up 59-58 after a tough interior bank shot by Aminah Williams (10 points, a team-high seven rebounds), UCLA's Kari Korver drilled a deflating deep three-pointer, starting the 14-4 run.
"When any team goes on a run it's just, ow, dagger," Davis said. "You take it really hard. It's really hard to maintain that focus when teams go on a run. We just have to figure out a way to play through that."
Attendance: 1,189. Officials: Clarke Stevens, Darren Krzesnik, Karen Lasuik.