Arizona Women Survive Late Surge by USC for 75-64 Win

Jan. 15, 2004

TUCSON (AP) -- Arizona's Dee-Dee Wheeler scored 20 points and the Wildcats shot 73 percent in the first half for a 75-64 victory over Southern California (7-7, 4-2) at home on Thursday.

The Wildcats (13-4, 5-1) made 19 of 26 field goals by intermission, had 10 steals and forced USC to 29 percent shooting to build a 46-30 halftime lead.

Arizona didn't seal the game until the final minutes, however. The Wildcats led 69-55 with 5:05 remaining in the game after a Shawntinice Polk lay-in. USC scored nine straight to close to within five with 49 seconds left before the Wildcats sealed the outcome with free throws and a breakaway lay-up by Natalie Jones.

Polk finished with 17 points, while Aimee Grzyb and Natalie Jones each added 11 for Arizona. Ebony Hoffman led USC with 17 points, while Eshaya Murphy had 15.

The win was Arizona's 22nd straight at McKale Center, the fourth-longest home court winning streak nationally.

After Murphy connected on a three-pointer with 4:16 remaining in the first half to narrow Arizona's lead to 30-28, the Wildcats scored the final 14 points before the break.

Wheeler scored eight of her 17 first-half points in the late surge. She took advantage of several breakaways as Arizona scored 14 fast break points by halftime.

Arizona's Aimee Grzyb hit a three-pointer and Wheeler had a lay-up early in the second half for its biggest lead at 49-30.

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