Nov. 14, 2004
Seattle, WA – The USC women’s basketball team suffered a 65-53 loss at the hands of Washington Sunday night in first-day action at the WBCA/BTI Classic.
The Huskies overcame a five-point halftime deficit and retook the lead with nine minutes remaining in the second half to send USC to its first loss of the season. The game was a tale of two halves, as USC dominated on defense in the first half, holding Washington to just 25.9% percent shooting (7-27 FG) and outscoring the Huskies, 14-4 in the paint. In the second half however, UW took over on defense, forcing 17 USC turnovers and limiting the Gamecocks to just five second half field goals.
USC was impressive in the first half, holding Washington scoreless for the first four and half minutes of the game before the Huskies sank the first of their 10 three-pointers. The Gamecocks led for the first 12 minutes before UW took the lead and held it until the 3:45 mark, when USC sophomore guard Lauren Simms (team-high 12 pts) drained a 3-pointer to tie the game at 22. On the ensuing inbounds pass, Washington committed a violation and the Gamecocks capitalized. Freshman center Ilona Burgrova (6 pts, 5 reb) took the pass and made an easy lay-up that gave USC a 24-22 lead and the Gamecocks ended the half on a 12-4 run, and went to the locker room with a 29-24 lead. USC converted 13 UW first half turnovers into 16 points and held the Huskies to just 7 first half field goals.
USC came out strong in the second half, extending the lead to nine and held on to the lead until the nine minute mark of the second half. But the Gamecocks were held scoreless for a stretch of 6:58 in the middle of the period, a stretch that resulted in a 21 points for the Huskies and a 13-point Washington lead. Despite a solid effort in the final six minutes of the period, USC couldn’t find a way to make their shots fall, making just one of ten attempts from behind the arc in the second half. Washington was able to convert on USC’s mistakes, scoring 25 points off of the 17 Gamecock turnovers in the second half, and making 10 of their 21 three-point attempts in the game.
The Gamecocks shot 70% from the free throw line (16-23 FT), led Washington 20-12 in points in the paint, and earned a 40-38 edge in rebounds. However, USC was just 16-48 from the field and committed 30 turnovers in the game, the most turnovers for the Gamecocks since they played Georgia Southern in 2002.
Coach Walvius’ comments on the game: “I was impressed with Washington, they’ll only continue to get better. They did a great job on defense and on the boards against us today. I like our talent but one thing we have to learn is that a lot of times, games are decided by runs. We turned the ball over a lot and at times it looked like we panicked. You can’t turn the ball over 30 times against a team like Washington and expect to win on the road.”
USC will be back in action tomorrow night at 8:00 pm eastern time against UNLV in Seattle.