The USC women’s basketball team captured the 2010 Women of Troy Basketball Tournament title behind 23 points from junior guard Ashley Corral, knocking off San Diego State 74-64.
Corral opened the game on fire for USC (7-4), scoring 13 of the team’s first 15 points and pacing the Women of Troy to an early 15-4 lead. USC pushed the advantage to as many as 15 points in the first half and never trailed en route to the title and their third straight victory.
USC seemed poised to cruise to victory after taking a 42-25 lead into halftime, but the Aztecs (4-5) rallied in the early stages of the second half to make it interesting. San Diego State closed the gap to 62-58 with four minutes remaining before USC ended the game with a 12-6 run.
Corral knocked down her first five shots of the game and finished 7-14 from the floor. She added six assists and five rebounds to fill out an impressive stat line. Sophomore forward Christina Marinacci came off the bench to score 14 points and grab eight rebounds
Redshirt senior guard Jacki Gemelos and junior guard Briana Gilbreath added 13 points apiece for the Women of Troy, who shot just 40 percent from the floor, but made up for it by connecting on 17 of their 21 free throw attempts.
Gilbreath earned MVP honors of the tournament after posting averages of 13.5 points, 7 rebounds and 3 steals. Backcourt mate Gilbreath joined her on the All-Tournament team.
Paris Johnson and Coco Davis paced San Diego State with 18 and 16 points, respectively.
For the second straight game, turnovers by the opposition helped the Women of Troy pull out the victory. San Diego State turned the ball over 19 times against USC.
In the opening game of the tournament, USC parlayed a swarming defensive effort into a double-digit victory Sunday night over future conference foe Colorado. The Women of Troy forced 24 turnovers in the game, led by Gilbreath’s five steals.
Gilbreath and Corral scored 14 points apiece for USC, who held the Buffaloes to just 32 percent shooting.
The Women of Troy have Christmas off before resuming play Dec. 29 at Fresno State.