USC Falls To No. 18 Arizona State On The Road 79-72
Feb. 4, 2006
TEMPE, ARIZ. -- The USC women's basketball team got close to another upset of Arizona State but wound up out of reach in a 79-72 loss to the No. 18 Sun Devils on Saturday afternoon at Wells Fargo Arena. USC had four players fin ish in double figures and had two players with double-doubles in the loss. Eshaya Murphy led the Women of Troy with 20 points and 12 rebounds. ASU's Emily Westerberg led all players with 26 points. The loss breaks the tie between USC and ASU in the Pac-10 standings. ASU now sits in second place with a 9-4 conference record (18-5 overall), and USC is now 8-5 in Pac-10 play and 14-8 overall.
In the first half, USC had to dig itself out of a 10-point hole. The Trojans trailed the entire half until five minutes to go. From there, the teams trade leads until Chloe Kerr tied it up at 27-27 with a layup. Eshaya Murphy then sandwiched a pair of 3-pointers around another Kerr basket to get USC to a 35-31 lead. Murphy's second three came just before the halftime buzzer to give the Women of Troy a boost going into the locker room and into the second half.
ASU came back to take back the lead early in the second half with some low scores and a fast break layup. The Trojans took a 46-44 lead at the 9:30 mark, but ASU was able to claw back and went ahead 58-52 on a 3-pointer from Emily Westerberg with 4:40 to go. Forty seconds later, Reagan Pariseau hit another 3-pointer, and the Westerberg hit a pair of free throws to make it 63-54 with under four minutes left. ASU got up by 11 with Amy Denson's 10th point of the half. It was a 10-point game going into the final two minutes of play until Meghan Gnekow nailed a 3-pointer. Forced to foul and unable to grab a defensive rebound, USC went back to trail 69-60, but Gnekow drilled another three with a minute ledt to make it 69-63 ASU. In the final minute, LeNoir got the Trojans within four at 74-70 with 30 seconds left, but ASU made good on its next five free throws to ward off any hopes of a USC comeback.
USC now returns to Los Angeles for its final home stand and last games in the Sports Arena with a Feb. 9 game against Washington, followed by a Feb. 11 clash with Washington State.