USC Women Are Edged 72-69 By ASU
Feb. 12, 2009
LOS ANGELES, CALIF. - The USC women's basketball team came up just short of Arizona State on Thursday night, battling through eight tie scores in the game before winding up with a 72-69 loss - just the second loss for the Women of Troy at the Galen Center this season. Three Trojans finished in double figures, led by Ashley Corral's 19-point outing. USC moves to 12-10 overall and 6-5 in Pac-10 play with the loss, while Arizona State increases its winning streak to 10 straight for records of 18-6, 10-2.
Arizona State opened the game shooting at 52 percent through the first half, although the Sun Devils only held a slim 36-33 lead at the break. The Trojans had Ashley Corral in double figures by halftime, although USC was shooting 36 percent on the way into the second half of play. On the way to a 15-point night, Camille LeNoir put up 12 points in the second half to account for a third of USC's second-half scoring. She also moved up to rank No. 4 all-time in career assists with three more to now hold a total of 417. Briana Gilbreath also had a double-digit day with 13 points. ASU got 15 from Dymond Simon and 10 apiece from Kayli Murphy, Danielle Orsillo and Briann January.
USC's second-half effort saw the Trojans shoot 32 percent to finish up the game at 33 percent overall. ASU ended up at 46 percent shooting in the game. The teams were tied at 61-61 with 5:39 to go in the game, and got to within one with 14.6 seconds left only to have ASU stay strong from the free-throw line in the final seconds. USC went 19-of-27 in free throws on the night, compared to a 19-of-23 outing by the Sun Devils.
After getting out to an 8-4 lead, USC's offense hit a cold patch while ASU knocked out an 11-0 run to get into its first lead. Ashley Corral stopped the streak with a long three, and knocked down another later to make it 20-16 ASU with 9:40 to go. Aarika Hughes ebounded from a takedown and wound up knocking down a three at 3:30 to cut it back to a one-point game, with the Sun Devils up 27-26. After another ASU bucket, Camille LeNoir served up her first points of the night with a smooth take to the hole to keep USC within one. But an ASU three, layup and free throws helped pushed the Sun Devils ahead during the last 1:30, while USC hit 5-of-8 free throws in that final span to make it a 36-33 Sun Devil lead at halftime.
USC tied it up 36-36 and then again at 40-40 when Briana Gilbreath knocked down a jumper and LeNoir hit two free throws at 18:10. USC's first lead since the first five minutes of the game came when Gilbreath interrupted an ASU inbounds and got the ball to Hailey Dunham for a score in the paint that put USC up 44-43 at 16:05. USC then answered a couple low scores from the Sun Devils with a three from Heather Oliver, and the teams were in their sixth tie-up of the game at 47 each with 13:30 on the clock. Camille LeNoir secured her fourth straight game in double figures with a three at 9:15 to make it a 52-50 ASU lead. The lead traded hands again later when Corral nailed her third three of the night for a 59-58 USC lead, and then ASU's Danielle Orsillo buried one of her own to get ASU ahead 61-59. Corral then put away two free throws, and the score was again tied, this time at 61-61 with 5:39 to go. From the 4:25 mark, ASU scored all its points off free throws to move ahead 70-64 with 1:55 remaining in regulation. LeNoir nabbed a steal and took it the other way, fouled intentionally in the process and coming away with a three-point play that made it 70-67 ASU with 1:20 to go. The Sun Devils pulled down an offensive board on their next possession for some extra time, but LeNoir got to a loose ball and called timeout to set up USC on the attack. LeNoir hit a quick jumper with 14.6 seconds on the clock to make it 70-69 ASU. A USC foul put the Sun Devils on the line and both were good with 12.8 seconds to go. LeNoir went for the last shot from beyond the arc but was under pressure. Still, her shot went just off the rim, and USC was out of time to tie it up, left with a 72-69 Arizona State victory and just the second loss at the Galen Center for the Trojans this season.
USC next host Arizona in a televised matchup on Sunday (Feb. 15) at 12 p.m. at the Galen Center.