Trojans Topple Devils

Despite their struggles this season, the Sun Devils have been able to hang around in many games and give themselves a fighting chance. However, on Saturday night in Los Angeles, they led for only two minutes and for most of the game trailed by double digits. When the final buzzer sounded, ASU was still winless in league play, falling to USC 58-49.

Christian Polk scored the first two points of the game, but Arizona State (6-13, 0-8) relinquished the lead for good to USC (15-5) fro good. Yet, for the first eight minutes of the contest, the visitors from Tempe didn't let their deficit mushroom. A lay-up by Antwi Atuahene had the maroon trailing just 14-13 at the 12:35 mark. A 10-1 by the Trojans put the home team in a double digit lead 24-14 with 5:53 left in the half, and USC coasted the rest of the period going to the locker room with a 30-18 halftime edge.

ASU actually put together a formidable second half scoring 31 points. Alas their inability to grab back the lead, and literally trading baskets with USC in the last twenty minutes naturally didn't change the game's fate. A three-pint basket by Derek Glasser brought down the deficit to its lowest point, five points, 39-34 at the 13:21 mark. The Trojans responded by increasing their margin to ten points or better for most of the second half, making 8-9 free throws in the last 2:34 en route to victory.

Jeff Pendergraph led ASU with 13 points and had a game-high nine rebounds. Derek Glasser chipped in with ten points and tied a game-high with four assists. The Sun Devils got only two points from their bench, and didn't take advantage of a cold shooting night from the field by USC (37.5%), and converted themselves at a 36.5%. ASU attempted just nine free throws to USC's 28. Nick Young paced all players of the floor with 18 points.

ASU will end a tough three-game road stretch, by playing Arizona on Wednesday. The Wildcats are licking their wounds, as they were swept in Los Angeles much like their archrival.

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