Trojans Knock Off Sun Devils, 61-49
Jan. 15, 2009
LOS ANGELES (AP) - Daniel Hackett scored only four points for Southern California against No. 16 Arizona State and was still the star of the game
Hackett held Sun Devils star James Harden to a career-low four points, freshman DeMar DeRozan scored 19 of his career-high 22 points in the second half, and USC beat ASU 61-49 Thursday night.
'We guarded as well as we've guarded since I've been here,' said fourth-year USC coach Tim Floyd. 'Daniel Hackett didn't make a field goal, but played as well as any player I've had at USC. He was outstanding.'
Floyd said he'd have to go back to his days as coach at Iowa State (1994-98) to remember a player of his performing as well on defense as Hackett did.
Harden, a 6-foot-5 sophomore averaging a conference-leading 23.1 points, missed all eight of his field goal attempts and went 4-of-7 from the foul line.
'I was able to frustrate him, make him settle for the jumper late in the game,' Hackett said. 'Once I saw his jumper wasn't going, I tried to crowd him. I just tried to contain him without fouling. We really did a great job with all five guys loading on him. I just did my job. Without the help of my teammates, it's not happening.'
Harden said Hackett 'just played any regular defense that I've seen before.'
'He was physical, I just wasn't being aggressive from the get-go like I usually am,' Harden added. 'They played great team defense.'
ASU coach Herb Sendek said the Trojans face-guarded Harden wherever he went.
'They just took away James and were willing to give other guys shots,' Sendek said. 'They just beat us in every way in the second half.'
Dwight Lewis added 18 points and Taj Gibson had 11 points, 11 rebounds, three blocked shots and three steals for the Trojans (11-5, 2-2), who snapped a two-game losing streak and raised their record at home to 9-1.
Hackett, averaging 11.1 points, missed all four shots he attempted, but had a game-high six assists.
DeRozan shot 7-of-11 in the second half and 8-of-13 overall. He also had eight rebounds and three steals.
'We have great shooters,' he said. 'We knew eventually they'd start falling for us.'
Rihards Kuksiks led ASU (14-3, 3-2) with 16 points. He shot 4-of-6 from 3-point range, making him 22-of-33 from beyond the arc in his last seven games.
Jeff Pendergraph and Derek Glasser added 13 points each for the Sun Devils, who lost for the eighth straight time in Los Angeles dating back to 2006 - three losses at USC, two at UCLA and three more in the Pac-10 tournament at Staples Center.
Lewis, averaging 15.3 points entering the game but held out of the starting lineup for the first time this season, scored eight points during a 10-2 run to begin the second half to give the Trojans a 29-28 lead - their first of the game.
Harden, who grew up in the Los Angeles area, scored his first points with 7:43 remaining on two free throws, giving ASU a 40-39 lead.
But a foul shot by Gibson, a 3-pointer by Keith Wilkinson, a three-point play by DeRozan and a dunk by Gibson gave the Trojans an eight-point lead with 5:25 to play. DeRozan later scored five straight USC points including his first 3-pointer of the season to make it 53-43, and ASU didn't threaten after that.
The Sun Devils led 26-19 at halftime. The defenses dominated, with ASU shooting just 39.1 percent and committing 10 turnovers and USC shooting 29.2 percent and turning the ball over nine times. The Trojans shot 54.2 percent in the final 20 minutes while outscoring ASU 42-23, and had just three turnovers.
Arizona State finished shooting 34.1 percent with 15 turnovers.
The Trojans shot 1-for-12 and committed seven turnovers in the first 11 minutes, but the Sun Devils didn't take full advantage, leading 13-4.
Lewis made two 3-pointers during an 8-2 run that moved the Trojans within three points, but Kuksiks outscored the Trojans 9-2 on three 3-pointers, giving the Sun Devils a 24-14 lead.
Gibson, a 6-foot-9 junior, became the fourth Pac-10 player to block at least 200 shots in his career when he got his first one. He joined Anthony Cook of Arizona (1986-89), who had 278 blocks, Channing Frye of Arizona (2002-05), who had 258, and Michael Stewart of California (1994-97), who had 207.
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