EUGENE – In a game that featured several runs on both sides, a 19-0 surge by USC was the difference as the Oregon women’s basketball team fell to the Trojans, 85-63, at Matthew Knight Arena on Saturday afternoon.
The Ducks (12-12, 3-10 Pac-10) had three players score in double figures, led by Ariel Thomas’ 16 points. Amanda Johnson and Deanna Weaver each tallied 15 points, and Johnson tied freshman Danielle Love with a game-high eight rebounds.
USC (15-8, 7-5 Pac-10) had four players in double figure scoring with Jacki Gemelos scoring 18, Ashley Corral tallying 16, Cassie Harberts pouring in 15 and Brianna Gilbreath recording a double-double of 14 points and 10 rebounds.
The Trojans’ second half surge was fueled by 51.4 percent shooting in the final 20 minutes. The red-hot second half shooting put USC at percent from the floor for the game, while the Trojans also knocked seven 3-pointers on the afternoon.
Oregon countered with 32.8 percent shooting and a 10-of-33 mark (30.3 percent) from deep range. The key to the game was USC’s inside effort. The Trojans held a 53-34 advantage in rebounding and outscored the Ducks, 40-20, in the paint. USC also edged UO, 20-8, in second chance points.
Despite the inside production from USC, the Ducks were able to erase an early seven-point deficit in the second half on the strength of an 11-0 run. The surge gave Oregon a 46-42 lead, but the USC answered back with nine straight points to go up 51-46.
A 3-pointer by Jasmin Holliday and followed by a steal that set up a Johnson layup tied the contest up at 51 apiece. The score was tied at 53-53 with 11:49 to go, but the Trojans outscored the Ducks, 19-0, over the next seven minutes plus to take control of the game and send the Ducks to their sixth-straight defeat. Gilbreath contributed eight of the Trojans’ 19 points during the put away surge with two layups, a tip-in and two free throws.
Oregon trailed just 38-35 at the halftime break despite a 27-17 rebounding disparity in favor of USC. UO scored the opening basket of the game and led, 5-2, with less than two minutes passed. The Trojans took the lead with 16:33 to go and would not trail again until there was 15:56 remaining in the second half. The Ducks trailed 35-26 with 4:37 remaining in the first period, but Oregon countered with a 9-3 run to close the first half.
Johnson scored 11 in the opening stanza to lead Oregon, while Weaver chipped in 10 knocking down three 3-pointers in the first 20 minutes of play.
Corral knocked down three first-half 3-pointers of her own to lead Trojans with 11 first-half points.
Oregon has just one game on the schedule next week playing the second round of the Civil War at Oregon State with tip-off scheduled for 5:00 p.m. from Corvallis.
Notes: Amanda Johnson recorded her 20th double-figure scoring game of the season (53rd career) with 15 points…Deanna Weaver reached double figures with 15 points for the seventh time this season and set a new career high knocking down four 3-pointers…Ariel Thomas recorded the fourth double-figure scoring game of her season and led the Ducks in scoring for the first time in her career with 16 points…UO made at least 10 three-pointers for the ninth time this season and third time in the last four games…The Ducks have been outrebounded in 10 consecutive games…Oregon has now lost six consecutive games, the program’s longest drought since dropping seven straight from Feb. 18 – March 12, 2010.