Women's Basketball Tops USC, 78-68, For Second Consecutive Pac-10 Win

Feb. 23, 2001

LOS ANGELES - Nicole Funn scored 22 points as Oregon State's women's basketball team won its second consecutive Pacific-10 Conference game with a 78-68 victory over the University of Southern California on Friday night.

OSU improves to 13-11 overall and 5-9 in the Pac-10 while Southern California falls to 9-14 and 4-9 in conference action.

The first half was a game of momentum as the Beavers held USC to just one field goal in the opening seven minutes of action to take an early 12-4 lead. OSU continued to extend its lead while the Women of Troy were cold from the floor, reeling off seven-straight to take a 25-13 advantage at the 9:33 mark.

Southern California responded with a 10-0 run to narrow the Beaver margin to just a field goal (25-23) with 6:55 remaining. Oregon State would not relinquish its advantage but the Women of Troy kept the game close, trailing at halftime by just two, 39-37.

OSU hit 16-of-28 field goals (57-percent) before the break while Southern California knocked down just 12-of-32 shots from the floor (38-percent).

USC outscored the Beavers 8-4 over the opening four-minutes of the second half to take its largest lead of the game at 45-42, but it was short lived. Leilani Estavan buried a jumper followed by seven straight points from Funn to put OSU back in front 51-45 with 13:31 remaining.

Over the next 10 minutes, the Beavers outscored the Women of Troy, 30-10.

Southern Cal made things interesting in the final minutes as Ryane Alexander's 3-point basket narrowed the OSU lead to 72-68 with 2:31 remaining. Oregon State post Ericka Cook buried a pair of free throws with just under two minutes to play while Brina Chaney and Funn each added a lay-up to seal the victory.

Funn buried 9-of-20 field goals on her way to game-high scoring honors and grabbed a team-high eight rebounds. Cook finished with 18 points and six rebounds, including an 8-of-10 free throw mark while Felicia Ragland also reached double figures in scoring with 13 points. Freshman Leilani Estavan dished out a game-high seven assists.

'We're very excited,' commented OSU head coach Judy Spoelstra. 'This was a hard fought game and a big win, it took a lot of effort from all of our players.'

The Beavers finished the game shooting 50-percent from the field (29-of-58) while USC buried a meager 35-percent of its shots (23-of-65).

OSU garnered a 48-32 edge on points in the paint despite allowing the Women of Troy to pull down 25 offensive rebounds.

Oregon State looks for its third consecutive victory when the Beavers head to Pauley Pavilion for a Sunday afternoon contest against UCLA.

Tip-off is scheduled for 2 p.m.

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