Oregon defeats USC 76-66 to secure outright conference championship.

Oregon secured the outright conference championship today by defeating USC 76-66 that saw a 24-minute delay due to a power outage. Tyler Dorsey was the leading scorer for Oregon with 19 and had help from three other Ducks who also scored in double figures.

(PHOTO) Oregon Ducks guard Tyler Dorsey (5) shoots against Southern California Trojans forward Chimezie Metu (4) during the game at Galen Center. Mandatory Credit: Richard Mackson-USA TODAY Sports

The Ducks relied on a stingy zone defense, tough rebounding and heads up offensive play to pull the game out of reach in the final four minutes of the game when Oregon held a 4-point lead, 65-61. A big 3-point bucket by Dorsey jumped Oregon’s lead to seven, 68-61 and from that point on the Ducks controlled the game.

Elgin Cook finished the day off with 17 and 12 rebounds while Dwayne Benjamin added 14 and Jordan Bell had 11 before fouling out

When the lights went out in at the 5:38 mark of the first half, Oregon appeared to be having everything go its way and were leading 31-22, but after the power came back on USC started clawing its way back and cut the lead to 44-37. In the second half the Trojans actually took the lead at 46-46 at the 15:14 mark, and again at the 12:39 mark leading 50-48. From then on, Oregon calmly and kept putting on the pressure and taking control of the rebounding and held a 36-29 advantage in that category for the game.

Oregon shot 48 percent from the field on 28-of-59 shooting including 5-for-14 in 3-point shooting and was 15-of-17 from the free throw line.

USC was led in scoring by Nikola Jovanovic and Katin Reinhardt  both with 12 points each with Jordan McLaughlin adding 10.

USC shot 42 percent for the game on 22-of-53 shooting including 4-of-19 in 3-point shots and was 18-of-28 from the line. Oregon held a distinct advantage in scoring in the paint, realizing 40 points to USC’s 32.

Oregon’s leading scorer for the year, Dillon Brooks was settled with two early fouls causing him to miss for the first half, and then sustained an injury when he was inadvertently elbowed by Jovanovic that caused a cut over his left eye. Brooks came back into the game after receiving some medical attention and changing jerseys because of blood dripping onto his original game jersey.

With the win regular season with a 25-6 record and 14-4 in conference play. USC ends the regular season with a 20-11 season record and 9-9 in conference play.

Oregon will have the No. 1 seed in the Pac-12 conference play and depending how well the Ducks do in Las Vegas will determine if they seed higher than third seed that many have projected.



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