USC Downs Oregon State, 89-84
Feb. 25, 2006
LOS ANGELES (AP) - Nick Young scored a career-high 33 points and grabbed 14 rebounds, leading USC to an 89-84 victory over Oregon State on Saturday night in the Trojans' final scheduled home game at the Sports Arena.
A crowd of 5,350 helped the Trojans (17-10, 8-8 Pac-10), bid adieu to the long-decaying facility - including 68-year-old Richard Aller, who worked at the Sports Arena as a peanut vendor from 1959 through 2002.
The Trojans played their first game at the Sports Arena on Dec. 1, 1959, losing 47-45 to UCLA. Their new home will be the Galen Center, an on-campus facility that will seat 10,258 - compared with the 16,161 capacity in this building.
Lodrick Stewart had 22 points for the Trojans, who had a difficult time against the last-place team in the conference before pulling ahead 76-66 with an 8-0 run capped by Young's two free throws and a layup off an offensive rebound with 3:58 remaining. Abdoulaye N'diaye had 13 points and 10 rebounds.
Sasa Cuic tied a season high with 24 points for Oregon State (11-17, 4-13) before fouling out with 48 seconds to play. Nick DeWitz scored 12 points for the Beavers before he was injured with 9:52 remaining. He committed an offensive foul while attempting a slam dunk and landed heavily on the floor.
Neither team led by more than six points until Young's three-point play gave USC a 66-59 lead with 8:09 to play. The Beavers got as close as 85-82 on a 3-pointer by Jack McGillis with 33 seconds left, but Brett Casey and Marcel Jones missed critical 3-point shots in the final 30 seconds. Jones finished with 17 points.
The first event at the Sports Arena was on July 8, 1959, when Mexico's Jose Becerra knocked out France's Alphonse Hamili in the eighth round of their World Bantamweight title fight. The building also was the venue for the 1984 Olympic Boxing competition, where future heavyweight champ Evander Holyfield was disqualified for a late hit on an opponent.
The NBA's Lakers and Clippers, the NHL's Kings and UCLA also called the Sports Arena home at one time or another.