3-Points: UCLA 61, USC 42

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Compiled by blog contributor Ben Weiss...

Three takeaways from a tough loss by the women's basketball team in Pauley Pavilion...

  • Lopsided is probably the first descriptor that comes to mind after today's game. While the Trojans struggled from the floor, shooting 12-43 (27.9 percent), their offensive woes were compounded by defensive lapses and the inability to take care of the ball. The Bruins capitalized on 20 USC turnovers, turning them into 15 points, while grabbing 19 offensive rebounds for 19 second chance points. "You're not going to win many games when you're shooting 27 percent," Head Coach Michael Cooper said after the game. "I thought our defense would be a lot better because, as I tell my players, our offense comes and goes, but we have to play a little nastier (on defense)." Feeding off the energy of the home crowd, UCLA put the pressure on from the opening tip with a full-court press and simply outfought the Trojans for many of the rebounds and loose balls.
  • The Trojans' go-to-scorer Briana Gilbreath was held to nine points, all of which came on free throws in the second half. The junior guard struggled to find the range, missing all 12 of her attempts from the field. "(She) still had open looks, and she just wasn't knocking them down. That's going to happen in the game of basketball," Cooper said. On a positive note, Gilbreath contributed nicely on the defensive end, grabbing a team-high eight rebounds, while blocking two shots and notching two steals.
  • UCLA was paced by Jasmine Dixon, who finished with a game-high 20 points to go along with nine rebounds (four offensive) and three steals. USC had no response for Dixon, who seemed to be everywhere on the court today. Despite their height advantage, the Trojans were never able to capitalize against the smaller Dixon, who seemed to will her way to a stellar outing.
The Trojans maintain a 30-7.5 lead in the Crosstown Gauntlet competition after the loss. Here's Coach Cooper and Ashley Corral, who led the Trojans with 14 points, talking about getting back to the drawing board...

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