Tyrone Wallace hit one of his two 3-pointers with 1:13 left in the game to cap a 9-2 run for Cal as the Golden Bears (9-5, 1-1 Pac-12) beat USC (6-9, 1-1) 72-64 at the Galen Center Saturday night.
The freshman had a great game overall, contributing 10 points and playing solid defense on Jio Fontan (11 points, six assists). Justin Cobbs also added 10 points and two assists, but his recent struggles continued as he could not really find a rhythm against Fontan and the Trojans’ D. His play was more indicative of the game’s sloppiness – the teams combined to turn the ball over 17 times.
Facing a 32-29 halftime deficit, the Trojans readjusted, using their size to control the inside and rebound much better. Once again, however, Allen Crabbe saved the day with 19 of his 27 points in the second half, pacing Cal when USC would just not fold.
Chass Bryan (four points) made a layup with 5:01 left to bring USC within one, but Wallace answered right back with a three. About a minute-and-a-half later, with the Bears up four, Bryan stole the ball from Wallace but was chased down by Cobbs, having his seemingly sure layup packed against the glass. The crew from Berkeley was fired up and charged ahead to victory.
Three other USC starters were in double figures, including bigs Eric Wise (14 points) and Dewayne Dedmon (10 points). The seven-footer Dedmon also tacked on 11 rebounds and four blocks, anchoring the Trojans’ defensive presence inside.
USC travels to Colorado this Thursday to take on a team that brought #3 Arizona to overtime. This Wednesday, the Bears play their first in-conference home game against Washington in a nationally-televised game on ESPN2.