USC Women Capture 82-61 Win Over Montana State
Dec. 13, 2008
LOS ANGELES, CALIF. - The USC women's basketball team pocketed an important home win on Saturday afternoon, putting together another well-rounded effort at the Galen Center en route to a 82-61 victory over visiting Montana State. The Women of Troy had five players finish in double figures, receiving a career- and game-high 13 points from Hailey Dunham along with 12-point nights from Camille LeNoir, Ashley Corral and Nadia Parker and a 10-point game from Aarika Hughes. USC improves to 5-3 with the win, while Montana State moves to 4-5 overall.
USC trailed by seven during the first half, but worked quickly back into control. Leading by six at the half, the Trojans shot 49 percent in the second half and got up by 20 entering the final five minutes of play. Fouls stalled out the final stretches of both halves, with three Bobcats fouling out in the game. Montana State nailed nine 3-pointers in the game, while USC hit five, including three from Corral. The Trojans ended the game shooting 44 percent to MSU's 34 percent, and outrebounded the Bobcats 51-28, ending up one board shy of a season high.
The lead changed hands three times in the first 10 minutes of play. After trailing by seven at 13:55, USC worked back on top thanks in part to back-to-back threes coming from Camille LeNoir and Ashley Corral. Montana State nailed a three to tie things up 25-25 with 4:50 to go in the half, only to see Corral drain her second just seconds later to get USC back in the lead. With both teams in double bonus, the last three minutes of the half were spent largely at the free-throw line. USC's four-point from Corral's third three of the night at 3:20 in the game was cut into, but free throws from Briana Gilbreath and Aarika Hughes helped the Trojans hold a 37-33 lead for the final minute of the half. Nadia Parker capped off the half with a pair from the line, giving USC a 39-33 lead entering the locker rooms.
To open the second half, USC answered a pair of Bobcat baskets with a 9-0 scoring run, as Brynn Cameron hit a jumper and a three around a Hughes bucket in the paint, and Hailey Dunham sank a pair of free throws, taking USC ahead 52-38. USC came out the gates with a 5-1 rebounding advantage as well through the first five minutes. Montana State ended USC's scoring spurt with back-to-back 3-pointers from Sarah Strand - her second of the day - and Erica Perry to make it 52-44 USC at 12:55.
Some slick passing helped push USC back up by 12 after a Hughes take, as Corral hit LeNoir low, and LeNoir slipped a quick pass to Gilbreath for the make. LeNoir followed her assist with a long two at 9:45 to get USC back up to its largest lead of the game at 58-44. A steal and a layin from Heather Oliver helped push the Trojans along on a 7-0 scoring run for their biggest lead at 69-48 with just over five minutes remaining. The Bobcats snapped the run with another three from Strand to make it 69-51, but LeNoir drained a pair of free throws at 5:06 for a 20-point lead for USC at 71-51.
USC's next competition comes up at the Galen Center next week at the Women of Troy Basketball Classic. After a 4:45 p.m. game between Harvard and Siena, the Trojans open against Duke in an 8 p.m. game televised by FSN on Saturday (Dec. 19). Bring a toy worth $10, and get in free along with a friend to Saturday's Toy Drive. On Sunday, USC will play Harvard at 4:45 p.m., and Duke and Siena face off at 7 p.m.