USC Women Wind Up Out Of Reach Of Washington, 63-55
Feb. 2, 2014
LOS ANGELES, CALIF. -- The USC women's basketball team put itself in another hefty hole and again was unable to claw out of it, taking a 63-55 loss to visiting Washington today at Galen Center. Cassie Harberts tallied her second straight double-double for the Trojans, but it wasn't enough to counter a stagnant first half by the USC contingent. USC falls to 14-9 overall and 7-4 in Pac-12 play with its third straight loss. Washington finishes off an LA sweep with the win, improving to 12-9, 5-5.
A downright cold morning for the Women of Troy had USC with a season-low 17 first-half points on a frustrating 7-of-30 effort from the floor while Washington built up a solid 31-17 lead by halftime. The Huskies had nailed five 3-pointers in the first 20 minutes and were shooting 41 percent overall to comfortably outpace the struggling Trojans. Once high noon hit USC found some power, but the Trojans' game of catchup again finished too soon. The Huskies held USC at bay down the stretch, fending off the Trojans when they closed to within two and closing out a 63-55 victory. USC outscored Washington 38-32 in the second half, but that halftime hole was just too much. USC finished the game shooting 32 percent from the floor to trail Washington's 38-percent effort. The Huskies also nailed eight 3-pointers to counterpunch USC's 49-35 outing on the boards.
Washington's Jazmine Davis led all scorers with 25 points, including four back-breaking 3-pointers. USC was led once again by Cassie Harberts with a double-double on 22 points and 11 rebounds. Ariya Crook also hit double digits with 13 points for USC, and Brianna Barrett hauled in a career-high 10 rebounds.
The Huskies opened up a 10-0 lead on the Trojans thanks to back-to-back threes to open and a series of USC turnovers. Cassie Harberts got USC on the board with a score down low at 16:45, and Ariya Crook nabbed the first steal of the day for USC next to light a defensive spark for the Trojans. Unfortunately, it was an offensive pick-me-up that the Trojans were really aching for. After 10 minutes of play, USC was trailing 17-5, having shot just 2-of-14 form the floor to that point. Again, Harberts came through, hitting a jumper to make it 17-7 at 9:45. Crook would nail USC's first three of the game at 7:05, but the Huskies had already dropped four on the Trojans in building a 22-12 lead with 6:50 to go. A Courtney Jaco three provided a bit of a lift, making it 22-15 with 5:50 to go in the half. However, Washington would wrap the half on a 6-0 run, and the Trojans took a 31-17 deficit into the locker room.
In the second half, the Trojans finally began to get shots to fall. As opposed to the seven buckets hit in all of the first half, USC nailed seven in the first 10 minutes of the second half in trimming the deficit down to single digits. A Harberts score and a Crook free throw had USC within seven, down 42-35 with 11:20 to go. Washington responded with a 5-0 run back to double digits, but the Trojans constructed their longest scoring run of the game with a 7-0 surge -- thanks in large part to a three nailed by Desiree Bradley -- and USC was within five, down 47-42 with 8:35 remaining. Bradley landed another key three with 4:30 to go, nudging it to a four-point margin. The Trojans were still staring at a four-point hole with 1:35 to go. Harberts got it down to two, but UW's Davis nailed a three for some padding to 57-52. Forced to foul in the final minute, USC couldn't get closer than four
USC stays home this week to host a crosstown showdown rivalry doubleheader with the USC men on Saturday (Feb. 8) at Galen Center. The Women of Troy will host the Bruins first in a 3 p.m. game that day as USC looks to sweep UCLA this season.