Golden Bears Drop Game To Trojans, 89-70
Feb. 19, 2005
By GREG BEACHAM
AP Sports Writer
BERKELEY, Calif. (AP) - Freshman Gabe Pruitt hit five 3-pointers in thefirst half, and Jeff McMillan had 19 points and 10 rebounds to lead SouthernCalifornia to its second road victory of the season, 89-70 over California onSaturday.
Pruitt scored all 19 of his points before halftime, and Nick Young added 15for the Trojans (11-15, 4-11), who certainly didn't look like the Pac-10'slast-place team while overwhelming Cal for just their second win in eightgames.
Pruitt and Young picked apart the Golden Bears from outside as USC built a15-point lead in the first half. McMillan and Gregg Guenther then scored insidewhile the Trojans gradually pulled away for their first win in Berkeley since2001.
Rod Benson had 13 points and 10 rebounds for the Golden Bears (12-12, 5-9),who lost for the fourth time in five games - and reached the lowest point yetin their disappointing season. Cal looked listless and unprepared in a loss tothe bottom-dwelling Trojans, making countless unforced errors and playing poordefensively.
The Trojans launched 19 3-pointers in the first half alone, hitting nine.That included five by Pruitt, who reached career highs in baskets, 3-pointersand points in Thursday's loss at Stanford. Pruitt developed a swagger after hisfinal two 3's, strutting down the court on an unusually fun afternoon in atrying season for the Trojans.
Guenther finished with 12 points and eight rebounds, and Rory O'Neil had 11points before fouling out. Pruitt also fouled out.
In the final games of interim coach Jim Saia's tenure, USC has beenexceptionally aggressive from outside. The Trojans are 43-for-98 on 3-pointersin their last four games.
Richard Midgley, the Bears' leading scorer, had his third straight miserablegame, scoring nine points on 1-for-5 shooting and six free throws. He's3-for-26 in his last three games.
His teammates were no better. Starting guard Ayinde Ubaka had just twopoints until hitting a 3-pointer in the final minute.