Oregon knocks off USC, earns 2nd straight win over top-5 team
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Oregon knocked off a top-five team for the second time in two games, beating No. 5 Southern California 79-69 Saturday night behind Will Richardson's career-high 28 points.
De'Vion Harmon had 16 points and N'Faly Dante added 12 for Oregon (11-6, 4-2 Pac-12), which has won five straight, including an 84-81 win over fourth-ranked UCLA on Thursday.
Southern California came into the game fourth nationally in field goal defense, holding opponents to 36.6% shooting. Yet the Ducks hit their first four and nine of their first 13 en route to going 29 of 58 (50%) from the floor.
Boogie Ellis and Isaiah Mobley led the Trojans with 18 points apiece. USC (14-2, 4-2) has dropped two of its last three after opening the season with 13 straight wins.
Richardson had five of Oregon's 10 3-pointers as it shot 10 of 21 from beyond the arc. The Ducks also had a 34-30 advantage in points in the paint, with 14 of their 19 two-point field goals being either dunks or layups.
Oregon took control early when it went on a 13-3 run to take an 18-8 lead five minutes into the game. The Ducks hit three 3-pointers during the spurt, including two by Richardson.
Ellis hit two straight shots from beyond the arc to pull the Trojans within 32-27 with 4:01 remaining before the Ducks closed the half with a 13-2 spurt to take a 45-29 advantage. Richardson had eight points during the late run, and Eric Williams Jr. scored five.
The Ducks extended their lead to 55-37 five minutes into the second half. Chevez Goodwin got the Trojans within nine on a free throw with 4:54 remaining, but they could not draw any closer.
Oregon: The Ducks had a 6-6 record in late December but have regained their stride and could make a bid to jump back into the rankings after a strong performance this week.
USC: The Trojans are likely to drop out of the top 10 after struggling in all three games. They needed a late run in the second half to beat Oregon State on Thursday.
Oregon: Hosts Washington State on Thursday.
USC: Travels to Colorado on Thursday.
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