UCLA cruises to 116-68 win in China exhibition

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UCLA might be without star freshman Shabazz Muhammad on its trip to China, but the Bruins were still dominating in their victory over Tsinghua University in an exhibition Saturday in Beijing.

Behind 20 points and 15 rebounds from forward David Wear, UCLA cruised to a 116-68 victory.

“A lot of guys stood out offensively, and I was really pleased with how we shared the ball,” head coach Ben Howland said in a release. “I thought the Wears played well, and I thought that Josh [Smith] did really well when he was in there and was a very difficult matchup for them.”

The Bruins were efficient with the basketball, turning it over just five times and finishing 50-of-77 from the floor for the game.

Six players finished with double-figure scoring outputs, including Norman Powell and Travis Wear each adding 19 points and freshman Kyle Anderson with 11 points and 13 rebounds.

The game against Tsinghua was the first on UCLA’s trip overseas. The Bruins play again Monday night against Shanghai Jiao Tong University before taking on the Shanghai Sharks, a professional team, Tuesday.

UCLA is coming off a 19-14 finish last season, but a top-level recruiting class, led by Muhammad, has the Bruins solidly in the discussion to be Pac-12 champions in 2012-13.

As the team tours China, Muhammad remains in the United States while the NCAA continues to investigate whether he received improper benefits during his recruitment.

Daniel Martin is a writer and editor at JohnnyJungle.com, covering St. John’s. You can find him on Twitter:@DanielJMartin_