In a game marked by first-half fouls and a 10-minute power outage, theÂ Women of Troy managed to create enough offense to take down the University ofÂ Texas-San Antonio 74-56 at the Galen Center.
The Women of Troy (3-3) were led by sophomore forward Cassie Harberts,Â who scored 15 points. Senior guard Jackie Gemelos contributed 13Â points as USC shot 39.7 percent from the field. The Roadrunners (2-5) had only twoÂ players in double figures.
âIt was one of those games you just had to keep working in it,â USCÂ coach Michael Cooper said. âSometimes you have to find a way to win ugly, and this wasÂ it.â
The first half saw a lot of fouls, with six coming from the UTSAÂ in the first two and a half minutes of the game. USC took a 16-point lead into the half because of 10 first-half points from Harberts. Gemelos chipped in with six first half points toÂ give the Trojans 36 points at intermission.
Meanwhile, the defense played tough,Â surrendering only 20 points to the Roadrunners and forcing them to shoot only 23.3Â percent from the field.
The biggest storyline of the first half, however, might have been the power outage thatÂ sent the game into an extra 10-minute recess. All the lights in the stadiumÂ went off, and when the scoreboard came back on, the overhead lights were off.Â Despite the delay, the USC women came out strong after the delay and outscoredÂ UTSA 16-6 to end the period.
â[The game] was indicative of the lights going out,â Cooper saidÂ lightheartedly.
The second half featured much of the same, with USC taking a 20-pointÂ lead at the 11-minute mark. The second half surge was led by freshman guardÂ Ariya Cook, who scored six consecutive USC points during one stretch. With aboutÂ six minutes left in the contest, Cooper took out the majority of hisÂ starters and gave his role players minutes to close out the game.Â Cooper had much praise for Harberts after the game.
âCassie is our anchor inÂ the middle, offensively and defensively,â Cooper said. âWe expected her to do a lot
for a sophomore. Sheâs getting it done, and tonight was an indication of that. As longÂ as sheâs active down there âŠ weâre gonna be successful.â
The Women of Troy have had an up-and-down season thus far, and CooperÂ acknowledged that his team is not playing where they need to be.
âWeâre gonna be okay. Weâre learning from [losses] and our job is to keepÂ winning and get ourselves ready for Pac-12 play,â Cooper stated. âWe have to beÂ more disciplined offensively and defensively âŠ we gotta box out and we havenâtÂ really gotten into where weâre hitting shots yet âŠ Weâre gonna continue to workÂ on those aspects of our game and work on our shooting, and hopefully that turnsÂ around. And when our shooting comes, hopefully our defense will follow behind.â
The Women of Troy will next face No. 24 Gonzaga inÂ Spokane on Dec. 4.