The Huskies get a second shot at Southern California on Thursday -- the team that handed them their worst loss of the season, 87-61 on Jan. 23 in Los Angeles.
“We all understand that we play with a lot of confidence at home,” coach Lorenzo Romar said yesterday. “But I think we all have to understand that USC just flat-out beat us. I’m not going to say, ‘Well, if it wasn’t for this, if it wasn’t for that.’ If it wasn’t for us playing USC, we might have won. But we were playing USC, and they flat-out beat us. … It’s probably the most difficult matchup for us in this league because of their size and length. They do a great job of defending.”
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SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA (15-9 OVERALL, 7-5 PAC-10)AT WASHINGTON (17-8, 7-6)7:30 p.m. Thursday, Hec Edmundson Pavilion.TV: FSN. Radio: 950-AM.
Series: USC took a 66-65 lead in the series with its 87-61 win Jan. 23 in Los Angeles. UW leads 37-28 in Seattle.
Statistical leaders: For USC – G Dwight Lewis, 13.7 ppg; F Nikola Vucevic, 9.8 rpg; G Mike Gerrity, 3.7 apg. For UW – F Quincy Pondexter, 20.4 ppg and 8.1 rpg; G Venoy Overton, 3.4 apg.
Scouting report: The Huskies have won five of their last six games and believe they are back in contention for an NCAA tournament bid if they finish strong. USC has won three straight, but has taken itself out of postseason tournament consideration due to recruiting irregularities under previous coach Tim Floyd. … UW is 16-1 at home, USC is 1-6 on the road. … Southern California is the only Pac-10 team without a league loss by more than 10 points. The Trojans have led or been tied in the second half of their 12 conference games so far. … USC leads the Pac-10 (and is fourth nationally) in scoring defense (56.3 ppg) and field-goal percentage defense. Individually, Vucevic leads the league in rebounding and defensive rebounding, while Alex Stephenson leads in offensive rebounding. … Washington leads the conference in points per game, rebounds, offensive rebounds, rebounding margin and turnover margin. Individually, Quincy Pondexter is second in offensive rebounds and is third in scoring and rebounds. … Pondexter and Vucevic are tied for second in the conference with nine double-doubles.
Next: UCLA, 6 p.m. Saturday, Edmundson Pavilion; ESPN.