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USC Women Stand Their Ground To Beat The Beach 71-65

Dec 23, 2020


LOS ANGELES — The USC women's basketball team was an efficient 50-percent from the floor today as the Trojans outpaced visiting Long Beach State 71-65 at Galen Center. The Beach got to within four points late in the fourth, but USC held off the visitors to mark its second straight win. The Trojans are now 3-4 overall, while Long Beach State goes to 1-1. USC head coach Mark Trakh collected his 450th career victory with today's result, now holding a 450-309 overall record as a head coach.

USC manufactured an 11-0 run that spanned the first and second quarters, but the Beach battled back and the teams were even at 30-30 by halftime. A powerful third quarter created the space that the Trojans would need down the stretch, outscoring the Beach 20-10 in that frame and then holding off their visitors in the fourth. USC wrapped the game shooting a season-high 50 percent from the floor to go along with a season-best 47.1 percent effort from 3-point range at 8-of-17. Long Beach State finished up shooting 39 percent overall and was 9-of-22 from 3-point range. USC also won out on the boards 35-30.

USC was led in scoring once again by Jordan Sanders, who scored a season-high 23 points for the Trojans. Endyia Rogers was next with 18 points, hitting four 3-pointers along the way, and Desiree Caldwell finished with 10 points. Long Beach State received 19 points from Naomi Hunt and 13 from Justina King, while Kristyna Jeskeova pulled in 12 rebounds for the Beach. 

Long Beach State landed a trio of threes in the first four minutes and worked out ahead 15-11 by the two-minute mark until buckets from Jordan Sanders and Kyra White tugged the Trojans back even at 15-15 before the quarter came to a close. USC got down to business in the second, with Desiree Caldwell delivering back-to-back scores before Endyia Rogers planted her second 3-pointer of the day for a boost to a 22-15 Trojan advantage not three minutes into the frame. The Beach would rally back, though, and the score tied up four times in the final five minutes. By the halftime buzzer, the teams were tied up 30-30.

The Trojans got their feet back under them in the third, following up three quick Long Beach State points with an 11-0 scoring surge for the Trojan cause. Sanders and Rogers each dropped a 3-pointer in the rally, which got USC out to a 41-33 lead. Madison Campbell would join the 3-point party by beating the buzzer from the baseline, netting a 50-40 USC lead entering the fourth. USC would push out to a 12-point lead with 4:10 to go thanks to strikes from Kyra White and Campbell, but that 63-51 advantage would dwindle with an 8-0 run by the Beach. It was a four-point game entering the final minute after Long Beach State landed its eighth and ninth 3-pointers of the day, putting the pressure on the Trojans to make a stand with its lead at 67-63. Desiree Caldwell planted four key free throws for the Trojan cause in the final 15 seconds to pad USC's lead to 71-63. Long Beach State got a bucket to go with 3 seconds left, and that wrapped the game as a 72-65 Trojan victory.

USC kicks off the new year with a Pac-12 road trip. The Trojans will visit Oregon first for a 6 p.m. game on January 1 in Eugene. Then, USC heads to Corvallis to face Oregon State at 11 a.m. on January 3.

- The win marked USC head coach Mark Trakh's 450th career victory.
- SR F Jordan Sanders had her first start as a Trojan today.
- With 23 points, Sanders had her second straight 20-point outing and set new high for herself as a Trojan.
- Sanders scored in double digits for the fifth straight game.
- With 8 assists, SO G Kyra White set a new career high.
- White's 7 rebounds tied her career high.
- With 18 points, SO G Endyia Rogers scored in double digits for the sixth game.
- USC's 50% shooting effort was a season high. 
- USC's. 47.1% 3-point effort was a season high.