USC Overpowers Bethune-Cookman 88-36
Dec. 15, 2006
LOS ANGELES (AP) - Nick Young led five players in double figures with 22 points and Southern California routed Bethune-Cookman 88-36 Thursday night for its sixth consecutive home victory.
The Trojans (7-2) haven't lost at the new Galen Center since a season-opening overtime defeat to South Carolina.
Their 52-point victory margin was the largest against a collegiate opponent since a 64-point win over New Mexico in 1955.
No team has shot 40 percent or better against the Trojans this season, and the Wildcats (2-5) didn't come close at 29 percent against the nation's second-best field-goal percentage defense.
Lodrick Stewart added 14 points, Kevin Galloway had 13, Taj Gibson had 12 and Dwight Lewis had 11 for the Trojans, who shot 67 percent in the second half, dominated the boards 42-19 and had 21 assists.
Jimmy Hudson led the Wildcats with a season-high 22 points, including a season-best six 3-pointers. He nearly single-handedly kept them in the game in the first half, scoring 14 of their 18 points, including four 3-pointers.
The Wildcats went long stretches without scoring in the second half of their worst loss of the season. The Trojans ran off 15 unanswered points, including seven by Young, to build a 62-29 lead. Young electrified the small crowd with a spin move that culminated in a one-handed dunk in the spurt.
The Wildcats didn't equal their first-half scoring output until Dewayne Pettus completed a three-point play with less than a minute left. They commited 21 turnovers.
Bethune-Cookman lost its fourth in a row, and fell to 0-3 on its four-game West Coast trip. The tiny school from Daytona Beach, Fla., plays at Cal State Fullerton on Saturday, finishing off its first-ever games against California teams.
The Wildcats were coming off a 92-64 loss at No. 22 Oregon on Monday.
Damitrius Coleman head-butted USC's Daniel Hackett at the end of the half. Hackett got off the floor and had to be restrained by his teammates as Coleman ran off. The referees spoke to Coleman before the second half began.
Coleman was called for an intentional foul with 5 1/2 minutes left in the game after taking out Galloway on his way to the basket. Galloway made both free throws for a 69-30 lead.
USC's All-Pac-10 guard Gabe Pruitt, who missed the first nine games after being declared academically ineligible, is awaiting posting of fall semester grades on Dec. 22. He has been practicing with the team since last week.
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