Stewart, No. 25 USC survive Cal
Berkeley, CA (Sports Network) – Lodrick Stewart scored 21 points, but only
three in the second half as the No. 25 Trojans squandered a 17-point lead, but
held on for a 76-73 win over the rival California Golden Bears.
Nick Young scored 19 points and grabbed seven rebounds for USC (16-6, 6-3
Pac-10). Gabe Pruitt added 10 points for the Trojans, who have won three of
Ryan Anderson scored 19 points for Cal (12-9, 4-5). Omar Wilkes scored 14 for
the Golden Bears, who have dropped three in a row. Jerome Randle added 12
points and seven assists for Cal.
Wilkes missed a long three at the buzzer, and USC survived in a game that
it had all-but-locked up with 13 minutes left.
Trailing 53-36 after a Pruitt free throw with 13:11 left, the Golden Bears
clamped down on defense and heated up from behind the arc. Cal outscored USC
35-18 over the next 11 minutes, finally tying the game at 71-71 on a Theo
Robertson trey with 2:16 remaining.
Robertson had a chance to break the tie a minute later, but missed a pullup
jumper with 1:06 left in the game. USC’s Daniel Hackett hit two free throws to
put the Trojans up 73-71. Cal tied the game at 73 on a Wilkes layup with 46.5
seconds left, but USC regained the lead, 75-73, after Hackett knifed through
the defense for a layup with 16 ticks left.
Anderson missed a three from the top of the key with seven seconds left that
would have put Cal on top, but Hackett missed one of his ensuing free throws,
providing Cal with an opportunity to send the game to overtime with a three.
Wilkes’ desperation heave fell short, though, and USC survived.
The Trojans led 37-30 at the intermission.
Cal made only 2-of-7 from behind the arc in the first half, but sunk 7-of-15
in the second half…USC shot a sizzling 59 percent from the field, and made
9-of-13 from behind the arc.