UW Women Outlast USC In Double Overtime, 87-79

Feb. 9, 2006

LOS ANGELES, CALIF. - Junior guard Cameo Hicks scored 25 points to lead four Huskies in double-figures, as Washington women's basketball battled through double overtime to pick up a dramatic road win over USC, 87-79, at the LA Sports Arena, Thursday evening.

The Huskies (16-6, 9-4) survived an 11-3 run by USC (14-9, 8-6) to tie the game at the end of regulation, 69-69, and came back from a four-point deficit in the first overtime to force the second. Junior forward Breanne Watson put back back-to-back offensive rebounds, including a bucket to tie the score at 76 with 46.3 seconds left in the first overtime. Washington then took control in the second overtime frame, outscoring the Women of Troy 11-3 to hold on for the important road victory.

Senior guard Kristen O'Neill and sophomore forward Andrea Plouffe combined for the last seven points in the second overtime. Watson finished with her first career double-double with 10 points and 10 rebounds, while Plouffe added 15 points and sophomore guard Dominique Banks had 11. Junior forward Jill Bell came off the bench to grab eight rebounds.

The Huskies outrebounded USC, 64-49, including an impressive 32 offensive boards. The stellar rebounding effort was a season-high, but short of UW's school record of 79 set twice in 1979.

Both teams played a fairly even first half, with USC leading by as many as five and UW leading by as many as eight during the first 20 minutes. Trailing by three, 37-34, at the intermission, the Huskies dominated the first part of second half, outscoring USC 25-9 to take a 13-point lead at the 10:30 mark. Hicks scored 10 of UW's first 14 points to open the second half.

But it was the Women of Troy who stole the momentum, using the final 10 minutes of regulation to erase the Huskies' lead. USC finished out the half with an 11-3 run - with Eshaya Murphy and Camille LeNoir combining for all 11 points.

In overtime, USC jumped out to a 73-69 lead on buckets from LeNoir and Murphy who finished with 20 and 24 points, respectively. But Hicks drained a three-pointer to close to within one, 73-72, and Watson put the Huskies ahead with an offensive rebound and bucket at 1:26. LeNoir struck again, sinking a three-pointer to put USC. Watson again, on the next possession, put back another offensive rebound to tie, 76-76. Hicks had a chance to give UW a lead with 22 seconds left, but missed both of her free-throw attempts.

Washington salvaged the tie when O'Neill stole the ball on USC's next possession and passed to Florence who was breaking to the basket, but Florence missed the layin at the buzzer, causing a second overtime period.

From there it was all Washington, as the Huskies held USC to just one field goal in the final five minutes.

Washington will continue its Southern California road trip, facing UCLA at Pauley Pavilion, Saturday, Feb. 11, at 1 p.m. PST. The game will be nationally televised on FSN.

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