Trojans Fall In Overtime 60-55 At No. 9 Cal

Feb. 2, 2008

BERKELEY, CALIF. - The USC women's basketball team took No. 9 California into overtime on the Bears home court thanks to a late run in regulation, but Cal emerged with the Pac-10 win over the Trojans with a 65-55 overtime decision on Saturday afternoon in Berkeley. Camille LeNoir led all scorers with 21 points and had a team-high seven rebounds for the Trojans, and Nadia Parker had 12 points and a career-high 5 blocks in the game. Cal had three players finish in double figures, including a double-double from Devanei Hampton with 20 points and 15 rebounds. USC moves to 13-9 overall and 6-5 in Pac-10 play with the loss, while Cal improves to 19-3, 10-1.

USC kept a tight leash on the Pac-10 leaders throughout the game, erasing a late six-point hole with an 8-0 run to grab a two-point lead until free throws from Hampton leveled things with 20 seconds to go. Already with a big advantage from the free-throw line, Cal converted seven of eight free throws in overtime to get to the win. USC out-shot the Bears 36 percent to 31 from the floor, but Cal was 19-of-23 from the free-throw line in the game compared to USC's 4-of-7 outing.

A trio of 3-pointers from Camille LeNoir along with one apiece from Heather Oliver and Morghan Medlock in the first 12 minutes of action helped the Trojans lift to a 19-12 advantage over the Bears. USC was tagged with its eighth foul of the game with 7:30 to go, just before Cal was handed its second. Four Bear free throws and a score from Devanei Hampton got Cal within one at 19-18 and then went ahead on another trip to the line to make it an 8-0 run for the Bears. A take from LeNoir snapped the run and got her into double figures with 11 points while USC went up 21-20 at 4:55. Another Cal scoring spurt pulled the Bears back on top 27-21 with 2:00 on the clock, but the Women of Troy got a pair of scores down the stretch from Kari LaPlante and Heather Oliver for a 27-25 Cal edge at the half.

A nice move and runner from LeNoir tied things up 29-29 early, and Allison Jaskowiak drained a three for USC to push the Trojans to a 32-31 lead five minutes into the second half. LeNoir later followed up a jumper with a steal and converted layup to answer another Cal run and get USC back into a one-point lead at 41-40 with 9:20 to go. But a 7-0 Cal run came next, as the Bears again went ahead 47-41 as the final five minutes of regulation approached. Parker stopped the streak when she finished off a pass from Oliver for a low score, and Simone Jelks finished off both ends of her one-and-one to make it a two-point game at 47-45 Cal with 3:40 remaining. LeNoir locked things up 47-47 with a jumper, then grabbed the defensive board on the other end to put USC on the attack. A three-second call on the Trojans gave Cal the ball with 2:10 on the clock. Parker delivered a block on Hampton's shot attempt, and Hampton was handed her second foul of the game next to set up a USC offensive series at 1:46. Parker came up with the score in the paint for the Trojans to get a 49-47 lead with 1:30 to go. Oliver nabbed the rebound off a Bear miss next, but the shot clock would catch the Trojans on their next trip downcourt. Hampton tried for the equalizer from the paint and was fouled, going to the line and making both to tie the game 49-49 with 25 seconds to go. LeNoir's last-second shot to win was barely off the mark, bringing up overtime.

In overtime, Cal got the first bucket on a Walker score low. A minute later, Parker did the same to tie it up 51-51 at 3:10. Hampton hit two free throws to get Cal back into the lead, only to have LeNoir deliver her 21st points of the night with a jumper to again tie the game 53-53 with 1:40 on the clock. Hampton hit one for Cal at 1:25, and the Bears were granted trips to the free throw line down the stretch, getting four free throws from Natasha Vital to work ahead 59-53 with 20 seconds to go to get out of reach of the Trojans despite two final free throws from Parker with just one second remaining, leaving Cal with a 60-55 overtime win.

USC now returns home to host the Washington schools, taking a 9-1 record at the Galen Center into a 7 p.m. rematch with Washington on Friday (Feb. 8). The Trojans will then take on Washington State in USC's 'Think Pink' game day at 12:30 p.m. on Sunday (Feb. 10). Fans are encouraged to show their support of breast cancer awareness by wearing pink to the game.

#9 California 60, USC 55
USC 25 - 24 - 6 -- 55
CAL 27 - 24 - 11 -- 60

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