USC Falls 66-63 At No. 24 Arizona State
Dec. 30, 2007
TEMPE, ARIZ. - The USC women's basketball team was edged out 66-63 by No. 24 Arizona State to snap a four-game win streak for the Trojans on Sunday afternoon in Tempe, Ariz. Nadia Parker had a career high of 22 points to lead the Women of Troy, and Hailey Dunham added 12 and Camille LeNoir put in 10 for the Trojans, who move to 8-5 overall and 1-1 in Pac-10 play. Arizona State was led by 16 points from Lauren Lacy and 15 from Sybil Dosty, as the Sun Devils improve to 8-5, 2-0.
USC had a strong first half, leading by as much as 13, but ASU's many trips to the free-throw line helped the Sun Devils' cause during the second half. The USC defense forced 14 turnovers out of the Sun Devils during the first half, while the Trojans shot 47 percent from the floor to help USC to a 33-22 advantage at halftime. Arizona State was awarded 26 free throws in the game, compared to USC's eight, and the Sun Devils converted 19 of those 26 while UCS went 4-of-8.
After falling behind early in the game, USC pulled even and then took its first lead when Brynn Cameron picked off a pass and Aarika Hughes drained a three. Minutes later, the Trojans pulled out to a 17-8 lead with an 8-0 run on nice scores in the paint from Morghan Medlock and Nadia Parker and jumpers from Camille LeNoir and Parker. Later, that lead would expand for the Women of Troy, as they pieced together another short scoring run, as Cameron tugged down rebounds to feed into USC fast breaks. She hit Hailey Dunham low for USC's first bucket in the run, then Dunham scored again and then Hughes hid Parker low to lift the Trojans ahead 23-12 with 5:50 left in the first half. LeNoir dished up a slick assist to Parker for her 10th points of the night, and USC held its largest lead of the half at 29-16 with three minutes to go until the break. ASU managed a 6-0 run next to cut in to make it 29-22 USC with 1:50 remaining. Heather Oliver nabbed a steal later, however, feeding into a fast break through LeNoir to Cameron for a layup. LeNoir drained a last-second jumper in the half, putting USC up 33-22 going into the locker room.
USC was tagged with five fouls in the first four minutes of the second half, as ASU cut the Trojans' lead and later tied the game 37-37 with 15:10 on the clock when Lauren Lacey sank a three - ASU's first of the day. Lacey was responsible for another pair of ASU buckets as the Sun Devils took their largest lead of the game at 45-40 with 12:30 to go. USC had cooled off to a 39 percent shooting effort while ASU picked up the pace for a 52 percent mark to that point. Heather Oliver snapped a 7-0 ASU stretch with a jumper, but USC's eighth foul of the half came soon after, and the Sun Devils went up 50-42 with 10:10 on the clock. Scores from Parker and Hughes cut the score to 52-48 ASU with 7:25 to go. Parker served up a new career high of 22 points when she banked in a jumper with 2:00 to go, keeping USC within four. LeNoir fed a pass to Hughes for a low score that made it 62-60 ASU entering the final minute. The Sun Devils were able to grab some key offensive boards in the last stretch to keep an edge, and worked ahead on more free throws in the last minute. LeNoir drained one last three for the Trojans just before the buzzer, but ASU's free-throw edge had built up a six-point advantage, leaving USC with a 66-63 road loss.
USC returns to Pac-10 action for a pair of home games, hosting a pair of ranked teams in California and Stanford. The Trojans take on the Bears at 7 p.m. on Friday (Jan. 4) at the Galen Center, and then turn to host the Cardinal at 2 p.m. on Sunday (Jan. 6).
#24 Arizona State 66, USC 63