SEATTLE - Justin Dentmon, benched in favor of a freshman for most of the season, scored 20 points to lead previously wayward Washington to a 71-61 upset of No. 5 UCLA yesterday.
Dentmon entered for the jittery Venoy Overton in the game's first minute and then took over for the Huskies (13-11, 4-7 Pac-10), who had lost four straight - the last three at home.
Jon Brockman added 12 points and 17 rebounds for Washington, which won its fourth consecutive home game against the Bruins dating to 2004. The Huskies are now 11-68 against teams ranked in the top 5, stretching back to 1950. Their previous win at home over such a foe was last March, against then-No. 2 UCLA.
Josh Shipp scored 19 points and Russell Westbrook had 18 for the Bruins (21-3, 9-2), who lost for the first time in six games and fell into a tie with Stanford atop the conference.
Washington's largest lead was nine, three times in the first nine minutes of the second half and again after consecutive baskets by Dentmon made it 65-56 with 2:14 remaining. But then the season-long problem for the worst free-throw shooting team in the Pac-10 - and one of the worst in the nation at 58.8 percent - let the Bruins back in it.
Darren Collison, 0-for-5 up to that point, hit a surprising 3-pointer to get the Bruins to 65-59 with two minutes to go. Washington's Tim Morris then missed two free throws and Shipp drove for a layup with 1:39 remaining to make it 65-61.
Dentmon then followed with another miss, the Huskies' eighth in 10 free throws, before he made one. Collison missed an open 3 and James Keefe had a putback try stolen by Morris with 47 seconds left. Morris was about to get called for a five-second violation on the inbound play but instead threw it off the face of Alfred Aboya and into the incensed UCLA bench.
Brockman scored after the Huskies' next possession, then Ryan Appleby made two free throws after a steal to put Washington up 70-61 and the upset - accompanied by a wild celebration - was back on again.
No. 13 Xavier 76,
St. Joseph's 72
CINCINNATI - Stanley Burrell scored 16 points and made a pair of clinching free throws with 13 seconds left to help the Musketeers win the matchup of the Atlantic 10's top two teams.
Xavier (20-4, 8-1) solidified its hold on first place with its 12th victory in the last 13 games. The Musketeers blew a 14-point lead and had to rally late.
Rob Ferguson scored 18 for the Hawks (15-7, 6-3), who had a turnover and missed a pair of shots in the final 20 seconds. Pat Calathes was only 4-of-15 from the field for 16 points.
For the second game in a row, Xavier wasted a double-digit lead before pulling it out at the end.
NO. 3 NORTH CAROLINA 103,
CHAPEL HILL, N.C. - Tyler Hansbrough scored 13 of his 39 points in the first and second overtimes to help the No. 3 Tar Heels rally from a 15-point deficit and beat Clemson.
Wayne Ellington added 28 points for the Tar Heels (22-2, 7-2 Atlantic Coast Conference), who needed a frantic comeback to keep alive their perfect record against the Tigers in Chapel Hill. North Carolina has won all 53 meetings, setting an NCAA record for the longest home winning streak against one opponent.
Cliff Hammonds scored 31 points to lead the Tigers (17-6, 5-4), who seemed on their way to ending the long-running streak before letting it slip away. Clemson led by 11 points with about three minutes left before the Tar Heels ran off a 14-3 run to force the extra periods.