Gibson was a perfect 10-of-10 from the field as the No.10 seed Trojans dominated No.7 seed Boston College in the second half with stifling defense and smart team basketball. Gibson delivered a statement to Boston College on Friday evening, helping to defeat the Eagles with 24 points, six rebounds, five assists, three blocked shots and a steal.
After a closely contested first half that had BC leading 34-30, the Trojans pulled away to handily defeat the Eagles in the second half.
Also contributing for USC, Dwight Lewis had 20 points (4-7 from 3-point range), six rebounds and 4 assists and Demar Derozan added 18 points on 8-15 from the field.
Defense Wins Games
Defense has been the signature of Tim Floyd's USC teams, and this game was no different. The Trojan defense not only stopped Rice, but also held the Eagles to 32.7% shooting and just 55 points.
Offense Clicking for USC
Coach Floyd complimented the team's shot selection, as the Trojans delivered a potent offensive game with 53% shooting and a surprising 73.7% from the free throw line (14-19). Gibson's perfect night helped the Trojans offensive attack. His 10-for-10 was the second best performance in NCAA tournament history, behind Kentucky's Kenny Walker who was 11-for-11 in 1986.
Up Next for the Trojans
In the Trojans first ever 3-in-a-row NCAA tournament appearance, USC advances to the Midwest Region second round on Sunday against the winner of the Robert Morris - Michigan State game winner.
Taj Gibson had plenty to smile about on Friday.
Follow SCPlaybook.com as we continue our coverage of the USC Trojans in the NCAA tournament.