Wednesday, December 29, 2010
Huskies beat Trojans 73-67 in overtime!
The Washington Huskies(9-3,1-0) overcame plenty of adversity to earn an important 73-67 overtime victory over the USC Trojans(8-6,0-1). The Trojans last season were the only team to sweep the Huskies last year in basketball and have proved to be a tough road trip in years past. The Huskies overcame poor shooting, turnovers, foul trouble and an early 12 point deficit for the win. The Huskies wouldn't have won this game without 18 points from true freshman Terrence Ross. The Huskies also had more balanced attack as the Huskies had five guys in double figures while USC had just two. The Huskies had a deeper bench as well as USC basically only played six guys while the Huskies played nine guys. Overall this was a huge win for the Huskies who last year started off 0-5 on the road in Pac-10.
The Huskies came out sloppy from the start finding themselves down 16-4 early. At that point it was looking like a repeat of last year when USC won by 26 points but the Huskies fought back to pull the game within 19-13. That is when Terrence Ross hit two three pointers to pull within 20-19. The Huskies led by Ross who had nine points all on three pointers and Matthew Bryan-Amaning who also added nine points. The Huskies actually took a 28-26 lead at halftime after Ross hit his third three of the half. The Huskies had halftime were in foul trouble as Aziz N'Diaye had three fouls, along with Darnell Gant and Justin Holiday. Bryan-Amaning had two fouls as this game had the feel of a Texas A & M game.
In the second half in an attempt to save N'Diaye, Lorenzo Romar started Gant instead. The Huskies were continuing to battle foul trouble in the second half. The Huskies were struggling to score once again and then Ross saved the day. Ross scored nine points in the second half including his fourth three pointer of the game giving the Huskies a 51-46 lead with under five minutes to go. Ross would hit another key bucket to give the Huskies a 54-50 lead before Nikola Vucevic hit a three pointer to cut the lead to 54-53. Vucevic would then hit two free throws to tie the score at 55-55. Thomas would miss a potential game winning three pointer and the game was heading to overtime.
Overtime is when Venoy Overton took over the game. He scored four crucial points to give the Huskies a 66-61 lead. Overton down the stretch knocked down 9-13 from free throws to secure the tough 73-67 road win at USC. Overton would finish with 11 points and six rebounds on the game after struggling during regulation shooting just one for five. The Huskies overcame Vucevic and his 28 points and 14 rebounds. Despite those big numbers the Huskies won the rebounding battle 40-26 as Bryan-Amaning played one of his best games of the year. Bryan-Amaning scored 18 points, grabbing eight rebounds while shooting 6-11 from the field and had just one turnover.
The Huskies had a slow game from Isaiah Thomas who had just 10 points and six turnovers but he did add four rebounds and three assists. Holiday unlike the Texas A & M game didn't foul out this time. Holiday scored 12 points on four for seven shooting hitting two three pointers and grabbing six rebounds while blocking two shots. Terrence Ross was the star of the game hitting four three pointers and adding a much needed 18 points off the bench.
All in all it was a great win for the Huskies to begin Pac-10 play. The Huskies had lost three out of four down at the Galen Center and four out of six overall to the Trojans. The Huskies will now take on the UCLA Bruins next game in a game where I'll be in the stands. This was an important win for the Huskies to prove to themselves that they can win on the road in a game where they didn't shoot that well.
- I'm going to give credit to Lorenzo Romar today in having his guys ready. The reason the Huskies play some soft teams non conference so you can see what you have in young players. Without those games nobody would have known about Terrence Ross abilities.
Ross is the reason the Huskies won today as several key players had off nights and with Wilcox out to an injury Ross stepped it up today. Romar also made the key adjustment after the Texas A & M loss to start both Bryan-Amaning and N'Diaye which has worked out beautifully. N'Diaye may have fouled out today but with him playing center it is allowing Bryan-Amaning to flourish as a power forward.
- Speaking of the twin towers they did their job for the most part. The Huskies have lost two games(Kentucky and Texas A & M) due to poor rebounding. Today the Huskies dominated the rebounds with N'Diaye grabbing six rebounds(four offensive) and Bryan-Amaning grabbing eight rebounds. Most importantly they gave up just seven offensive rebounds.
Rebounding has been a problem for the Huskies earlier this year. I expect with those two starting that will no longer be a problem.
Well that is my recap for now. With being on vacation in San Diego plus the game not being on T.V. kind of hard to recap. Which is a shame as this is the type of win where the team can gain confidence and go forward. It was nice to see the Huskies struggle offensively and overcome foul trouble to get a win. The location of the victory was huge as the Huskies are 1-7 the last four years on the Los Angeles road trip. The Huskies will try and be greedy in two days and go for the Los Angeles sweep which will make a statement to the rest of the Pac-10 that this conference is theirs for the third straight season.