Flat start dooms Trojans who drop their ninth straight with one more home game to come on Saturday (Oregon at 1:00pm).
The Trojans' offense was stifled by a tough Oregon State defense as the Beavers finished with nine blocks, seven of which came in the first half. USC shot just 29 percent in the first half which improved to 44.4 percent in the second. Though Byron Wesley returned from his suspension, he only managed nine points in tonight's effort as J.T. Terrell led the Trojans with 21 points, a season-high for the senior. "They played a great first half and we just could not make a shot," said head coach Andy Enfield. "They did their part in defending us and we just did not make any open shots."
Second Half Response
Despite a 26-point deficit, freshman Roschon Prince and senior J.T. Terrell fought hard in the second half to narrow the Beavers' lead. Both contributed tough points in the paint as well as Terrell's clutch three-pointer off an inbounds pass from Pe'Shon Howard. "[Roschon's] had his best week of practice the entire season so he earned the playing time," said Enfield. "He's one guy that I thought came in and really took advantage of his minutes which he earned in practice." The Trojans cut the deficit to five with 1:44 remaining but ran out of gas in the final 90 seconds.
The Trojans will honor seniors Pe'Shon Howard, D.J. Haley, Omar Oraby and J.T. Terrell as well as walk-on Daniel Munoz on Saturday as they take on Oregon at 1:00pm in the Galen Center. This will be the final home game for the Trojans and the final home game for Enfield's first senior class at USC. "It's our last home game on Saturday and these seniors are terrific young men. They will hopefully play basketball somewhere or go into the real world and get a job and I think they are prepared for that. I'm really appreciative of their efforts and I think they played hard all season," said the head coach.