USC-LMU Preview

Nov. 24, 2000

Southern California coach Henry Bibby will be looking for more consistentplay from his veteran team when the No. 20 Trojans play host to LoyolaMarymount on Saturday.

Southern California (2-0), which returned all five starters from last season, iscoming off an uninspired 78-67 victory over San Diego on Tuesday.

'We're a long way from being a Top 25 team and a good basketball team,'Bibby said.

'Yes, it is early in the season, and if you had freshmen, then you'd be OK.But we're bringing back a veteran ballclub. We have to go back to the drawingboard because we have to get better at this stage.'

The Trojans struggled in the first half against the Toreros and were down32-28 at the break. USC finally took its first lead at 40-39 on SamClancy's 3-pointer with 14:50 remaining. Clancy led the Trojans with 22 points.

'It was ugly getting it down to four points at the half,' Bibby said.'But a win is a win. The guys off our bench kept us in the game.'

Junior forward David Bluthenthal set a Pac-10 record for consecutive freethrows, hitting his first four to set the mark of 41 straight. Bluthenthalscored eight of his 10 points during a 14-0 run that put the Trojans ahead tostay at 56-47 with just under eight minutes remaining.

'I was trying to go 100 percent on the season,' Bluthenthal said of hisfree throws. 'But I actually thought I was going to miss sooner or later. Theminute that thought came into my mind, I missed my next free throw.'

Loyola Marymount (1-1) will be trying to end a 20-game road losing streak.

The Lions are coming off a 62-57 loss to UC Irvine on Tuesday. LoyolaMarymount shot just 8-of-29 in the first half.

Eurskine Robinson led the Lions with 11 points, five rebounds and fiveassists.

USC leads the all-time series with Loyola Marymount 37-5, includingvictories in the last four meetings. The Trojans routed the Lions 96-55 lastseason.

AP MegaSports Writer

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