USC's Second Half Comeback Bid Falls Short Against No. 13 Washington, 86-77

Jan. 12, 2006

LOS ANGELES (AP) - Brandon Roy had 23 points and 13 rebounds, Bobby Jones got 16 of his 22 points in the second half before fouling out, and No. 13 Washington beat Southern California 86-77 on Thursday night after nearly blowing a 19-point lead.

The Huskies have beaten USC in six of the last seven meetings after losing seven straight to the Trojans. It was only the second game the Huskies (13-2, 2-2 Pac-10) have played outside Seattle this season. The other was 35 miles down the freeway at the Anaheim Pond, where they beat New Mexico in the John Wooden Classic on Dec. 10.

Washington never trailed despite committing 28 turnovers. The Huskies shot 50.8 percent from the field against a USC defense that allowed both Arizona and Arizona State to shoot over 50 percent last week.

Gabe Pruitt scored all of his 21 points in the second half for USC after shooting 0-for-6 in the opening half. The Trojans (11-5, 2-3) have lost four straight to the Huskies by a total of 75 points.

Nick Young added 15 points for USC, which was outrebounded 47-24. Young, Pruitt and Loderick Stewart had accounted for 65.8 percent of the Trojans' offense entering this game.

Stewart had 16 points. The junior guard was thrown out of practice on Tuesday after throwing an elbow at teammate Collin Robinson.

The Huskies, whose 90-point average entering the game led the nation, opened with a 25-6 run and held USC without a field goal over the first 4 1/2 minutes. The Trojans were within 45-32 at halftime.

Pruitt made his first basket 26 seconds into the second half, a 3-pointer. He made a four-point play less than a minute later, draining another 3 from the right corner and converting the ensuing free throw after getting fouled by Jones. That sliced Washington's margin to 47-39.

The Huskies got the lead back up to 14 before Pruitt hit consecutive 3s. He would have had a third, but it was waved off because of an offensive foul by Ryan Francis near the basket with 9:36 left. Francis fouled out 73 seconds later, but Pruitt's sixth 3-pointer of the half got USC within 70-66 with 7:45 to go.

The Trojans got as close as 73-70 on Dwayne Shackleford's two free throws with 5:44 left, but they made some costly turnovers down the stretch. The Huskies put it away with Mike Jensen's 3-pointer and a dunk by Jones dunk which gave them an 81-72 lead with 4:01 to play.

Tempers flared under the Washington basket with 16:43 remaining and the Huskies leading 52-39. Stewart and Jamaal Williams exchanged words and had to be separated after a hard foul by UCLA's Abdoulaye N'diaye against Jon Brockman.

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