A strong offensive effort would stunt the USC women’s basketball team (15-13, 7-10 Pac-12) in their fight against the Washington Huskies(21-8, 10-7 Pac-12). The Women of Troy lost 60-48, dominated by three players in the Huskies arsenal. The women of Troy would endure the next 40-minute contest without senior forward Alexyz Vaioletama, who did not play because of an injury.
“It’s hard when you don’t have your go-to players in the line up, but I really thought we fought hard,” head coach Cynthia Cooper-Dyke said. “We did some really good things offensively and defensively, we just really couldn’t get into an offensive rhythm consistently throughout the game.”
Senior forward Kaneisha Horn lead the Women of Troy in scoring with 13 points and nine rebounds. Sophomore guard Jordan Adams also added 12 points and nine rebounds to the Trojan cause.
Scoring was slow for both teams in the first half. The Women of Troy shot at 32 percent to the Huskies 37 percent. Early on the game, the Women of Troy and the Huskies kept the game close. Freshmen guard Courtney Jaco and junior guard Brianna Barrett launched two shots behind the arc, keeping their deficit small.
“We had a few issues with getting ourselves organized; I think we took some quick shots,” said Adams. “I felt we played really good defense, we made them shoot contesting shots for most of their possessions.”
Talia Walton had a strong offensive presence with 6 points in the first 10 minutes. Adams responded by securing the lead with field goals.
USC hit a dry spell deep in the half, allowing the Huskies to make up for lost time. The efforts of Kelsey Plum and Jazmine Davis would put USC at a disadvantage. Horn would break the silence with a field goal for the Trojans after almost four minutes of not scoring.
Barrett kept the offense rolling with a layup and a free throw. However, this was not enough to overpower Washington.
Neither teams were able to score for two minutes. After a flurry of rebounds and missed shots, Horn hit a successful jumper. Freshmen forward Amy Okonkwo then bumped the Women of Troy pass Washington after a trip to the line.
The half ended with USC having a one-point lead and collected more blocks and assists than the Huskies.
At the beginning of the second half, USC racked up five points in the first five minutes.
Freshmen guards MacKenzie Calvert and Jaco would grab an assist each. Plum would put pressure on the Trojan defense, finding ways to score.
“Mostly we wanted to play fast and get out on the break,” said Okonkwo. “I feel like we need to execute more and play defense better, play more defense.”
After being tied at 30 USC’s offense slowed down while the Huskies began hitting shots. Plum would contribute to the Huskies offense while Horn continued to keep USC in the game.
With nine minutes left in regulation, the Huskies held an 11-point lead and would keep the Women of Troy at a distance.
The Women of Troy will battle against the Washington State Cougars on Saturday at 3 p.m. in their last game of the regular season.