USC Sinks UAB In Final Seconds, 81-78

Dec. 22, 2004

Final Stats

HONOLULU (AP) - Rory O'Neil hit the game-winning 3-pointer with five secondsleft as Southern California defeated Alabama-Birmingham 81-78 in the semifinalsof the Rainbow Classic on Wednesday evening.

With time running down on the shot clock, Gabriel Pruitt passed the ball toO'Neil at the top left corner and his basket fell through the net as the shotclock expired. A last second shot by UAB fell short.

Pruitt scored 15 points, Lodrick Stewart 14, and O'Neil and Nick Young had13 apiece to lead USC (6-3). Donell Taylor scored 19 points to lead UAB (6-3),while twin brother Ronell Taylor and Demario Eddins added 11 apiece.

UAB rallied from a 13-point deficit late in the second half behind a 20-5run. Eddins' basket tied the score at 73 with 3:36 remaining, and the Blazerstook a 75-73 lead, their first lead since the 4:08 mark in the first half, on alayup by Marques Lewis with 2:40 remaining.

The score was tied twice after that, the last at 78-all on Ronell Taylor'sfree throw with 40 seconds remaining.

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