Recap: USC vs. Arizona
01/12/2014 8:17 PM
01/12/2014 10:38 PM
Los Angeles, CA (SportsNetwork.com) - T.J. McConnell and Brandon Ashley scored 19 points apiece and No. 1 Arizona beat USC 73-53 on Sunday.
The Wildcats (17-0, 4-0 Pac-12) set a record for the best start in program history, breaking the mark of 16-0 set by the 1931-32 team.
"We're really excited about it, we really are," Arizona coach Sean Miller said of setting the record. "We talked about it and it's something I think all of us will really cherish. Any school record you break at Arizona in the basketball program is a real record because of the great tradition that we have."
Nick Johnson added 15 points and Aaron Gordon had 12 in the win as Arizona swept its Los Angeles trip for the first time in nine seasons. The Wildcats were coming off a 79-75 win over UCLA on Thursday.
Byron Wesley scored 18 points to lead the Trojans (9-7, 0-3) and Strahinj Gavrilovic had 10.
"We definitely turned the ball over too many times and had too many possessions where we didn't score," Trojans coach Andy Enfield said. "Against a good team like Arizona, you have to convert."
McConnell was shooting just 26.7 percent from 3-point range coming into the game but made 5-of-7 from beyond the arc as the Wildcats went 8-for-20 as a team.
USC had its biggest lead of the game at 27-23 with under five minutes to play in the first half but McConnell knocked down a 3 to spark an 11-0 Arizona run.
The burst gave the Wildcats the lead for good and was part of an overall run of 19-4 that stretched into the second half.
Arizona, after leading 34-31 at the break, stretched its advantage to 42-31 on two Ashley free throws with 15 1/2 minutes remaining.
It was a five-point game with under nine minutes to go but the Wildcats ended the game on a 25-10 run to pull away.
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