Trojans Squeeze Past RedHawks, 59-55
Dec 16, 2001
By BETH HARRIS
AP Sports Writer
LOS ANGELES - Sam Clancy scored 15 points and Southern Californiasurvived a second-half scare to beat Miami, Ohio 59-55 Sunday.
The Trojans (6-2) led by 15 points with eight minutes remaining and appearedto be on their way to a blowout victory in front of 5,115 at the Sports Arena.
But the RedHawks (2-5) erased their double-digit deficit with a 16-4 run,including 10 in a row, to close to 55-52 with 2:21 remaining. Alex Shortsscored nine in the spurt despite playing with three fouls.
Shorts scored 19 points for Miami, which was stopping in Los Angeles on itsway to the Rainbow Classic in Hawaii.
After USC's Brandon Granville missed two free throws, Juby Johnson missed anopen 3-pointer that would have tied the game.
USC's Desmon Farmer had his basket disallowed because of an offensive foul.Farmer got fouled with 26 seconds left and made one for a 56-52 lead. RobertHutchinson also made one of two free throws and USC clung to a five-point leadwith 18 seconds left.
Chester Mason committed two turnovers in the final minute to ruin Miami'supset hopes. His miscues were sandwiched around a 3-pointer by Larry Drake thatdrew the RedHawks within two with 3.8 seconds left.
They were forced to foul and David Bluthenthal scored his only points of thesecond half by making two free throws to hand Miami its third consecutive loss.
USC led by 18 points in the first half on 65 percent shooting. The Trojansran off 12 points in a row and then late in the half scored 10 consecutive fortheir 18-point lead before Miami closed to 12 at the break.
USC used its seventh different lineup in eight games as coach Henry Bibbycontinues to tinker in hopes of finding the right combination on a team withfive new players.
The teams were meeting for the first time.