3-Points: USC 67, Oregon State 56

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The Trojans hustled their way to a much needed victory.

  • "That was interesting," Kevin O'Neill exhaled as he sat down for his post-game presser.  The head coach is never one to complain about victories and he was not about to start tonight.  "We'll take the win," O'Neill said resolutely.  While it was not often pretty basketball, the Trojans held the Beavers to 24 points less than their previous meeting in Corvallis.  "We shrunk it up a little more," said O'Neill about adjustments.  "We were just sharper defensively."
  • Jio Fontan has consistently asserted himself as the leader of this team off the court, but he has not always brought that aggression to the game itself.  "My team benefits more when I am aggressive," Fontan admitted after the win.  "Today wasn't a crazy night as far as stats go, but I think just being aggressive opened a lot of things up and put pressure on the defense."  His head coach was proud of the effort.  "He played great tonight," O'Neill praised.  "For him to play the way he did said a lot about him."
  • The Trojans have struggled down the stretch this season largely because they are inefficient at the free throw line.  Tonight, they took care of business at the stripe and buried 17 of 21.  "We made the line," O'Neill pointed it out as a key to the victory.  Donte Smith made all four of his freebies plus two big second half threes.  "He's done it all season for us," O'Neill said of the senior.  "He's a guy that's been a major, major part of our team."
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  • The Women of Troy rallied from an 11-point deficit to win by 19 at Oregon State.  In the process, Ashley Corral became the 23rd player in USC women's basketball history to score 1,000 points in a career.

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