Trojans Fall to No. 20 Nebraska, 74-65
Nov. 23, 2012
LOS ANGELES - Despite a career day for sophomore guard Ariya Crook, USC was unable to hold off No. 20 Nebraska down the stretch, as the Cornhuskers defeated the Women of Troy, 74-65 on Friday afternoon at the Galen Center.
Crook led all scorers with a career-high 25 points and a career five made three-pointers to lead all scorers, and the Women of Troy (2-2) had a 10-point lead in the first half, but it was not enough as the Huskers (5-1) went on a 20-4 run with 4:20 left in the second half to push their way to victory.
In an up-and-back first five minutes of play, both the Trojans and the Huskers had a hard time finding the bottom of the net, with the score 5-4, Nebraska through the 14:31 mark. Out of the first media timeout, the Trojans went on an offensive tear, as Crook and Jordan Adams hit back-to-back three pointers as USC went on an 11-0 run to take an 15-5 lead with 11:49 left in the half.
The Cornhuskers were not going to go down easily, however. Through the next six minutes, they chipped away at the lead, scoring 15 while holding the Women of Troy to seven points, to tie things up, 22-22 with 5:42 to play in the half.
With two minutes left in the half, Crook connected on her second three-pointer of the half to give USC a 29-25 lead. The Huskers' Hallie Sample converted two free throws with 1:43 left to pull within two, 29-27. Adams responded with a layup to put the Trojans ahead, 31-27 with less than a minute to play. Nebraska responded with a layup of their own by Jordan Hooper with 23 seconds left to put the score at 31-29. With 13 seconds left in the half, the Trojans took a timeout to set up the final play of the half. Crook drove, missed the layup, but she got her rebound and put in the floater and give USC a 33-29 lead at the half.
The Trojans shot 41.9 percent from the floor to the Huskers' 34.6 percent in the half. Crook led all scorers with double-figure scoring in the first half, putting away 12 points on 5-of-10 shooting with two three-pointers. Cassie Harberts led the way on the block with six rebounds.
Lindsay Moore led the Huskers with 10 points in the first half.
In the second half the Trojans built up their lead to seven points, 40-33, with a three-pointer from Crook and a layup by Christina Marinacci at the 18:52 mark. The Huskers came back as they connected on a three-pointer by Emily Cady with 17:02 to tie the game, 40-40. They would go on a bit of a run of their own, taking a 50-42 lead with 13:24 to go. The Trojans fought back themselves, going on a 19-4 run starting at 12:19 to tie things up and pull ahead of the Cornhuskers by seven, 61-54 with 4:36 to go. However, that started the Huskers' 20-4 run through the final 4:20 of the game to push them to the 74-65 victory.
Harberts and Marinacci also finished with double-figure scoring with 13 and 10 points apiece, respectively. Harberts led the Trojans with eight rebounds as they finished the game shooting 44.4 percent, better than the Cornhuskers' 43.1 percent. However, Nebraska led with 28-of-32 shooting from the free throw line, compared with the Women of Troy's 10-of-16 from the charity stripe.
The Women of Troy will head out on the road for the first time this season on Tuesday, Nov. 27, as they travel to UC Santa Barbara for a 7 p.m. PT tip.