USC Women Impress In Exhibition Action
Nov. 4, 2012
LOS ANGELES, CALIF. - The USC women's basketball team worked out the kinks to post a powerful second half and put Cal State Monterey Bay well out of reach in a 73-45 exhibition win at the Galen Center. USC junior Cassie Harberts had the hot hand on the day as she dumped in a whopping 32 points on the visiting Otters, also finishing with 11 rebounds for a double-double along with USC senior Christina Marinacci, who had 12 points and 10 rebounds. This 2012-13 tune-up for the Trojans sets them up well for next week's season opener, which brings Gonzaga to town for a 2 p.m. face-off on Sunday (Nov. 11).
The game was the USC debut for six Women of Troy. In the starting lineup after sitting out the 2011-12 season due to transfer rules were Kiki Alofaituli and Kate Oliver, while USC true freshmen Jordan Adams and Destinie Gibbs also started the game. Another Trojan freshman, Brianna Barrett, saw significant playing time as well in her Trojan debut during today's exhibition action, and redshirt freshman Deanna Calhoun also hit the floor for her first competition with the Women of Troy.
The Trojans spent a good amount of the first half from the charity stripe, hitting more than half their points on free throws. Cassie Harberts was a perfect 6-for-6 from the line to go with four shots hit from the floor as she led all scorers with 14 points to go with nine rebounds by the break. USC manufactured a 9-0 run midway through the half to build a 20-8 lead capped by a jumper from Kate Oliver. The Otters would pick up the pace from there, however, going on to nail five 3-pointers in the half and pulling as close as within five on a three with 20 seconds left in the half. USC would finish off the half with a layup from Christina Marinacci, and the Trojans took a 31-24 lead into the locker room at the half.
Barrett became the Trojans' No. 1 distributor to help key a powerful 13-0 Trojan scoring blitz. Barrett served up three straight assists to three different USC scorers during the run, as USC built up a 49-30 lead by the 12-minute mark. USC kept the Otters quiet for almost five full minutes before CSUMB made it 49-32 with 11:20 to go. CSUMB would manage its first back-to-back buckets of the half and generate three straight scores to make it 52-38 before Harberts put a stop to that with a low score to keep her rolling toward the 30-point mark. Destinie Gibbs would bury USC's first 3-pointer of the day with 4:55 to go, and the Trojans were up 59-40 on the Otters entering the final stretch. Harberts' 30th point of the day would slip in with 4:15 to go as USC took its biggest lead of the game, up 62-41, and was off to the races for a 73-45 final.