Final Score: USC 66, Washington 51
Current Record: 10-6 (1-3)
Current Ranking: N/A
Next Up: @ UCLA (Sat.)
I said the key to the game would be shutting Ryan Appleby down, and that we did, as we kept him scoreless on 0-5 shooting. The obvious player of the game tonight was Dwight Lewis who looked great offensively, making smart decisions and showing great ability to get to the basket; he also locked down Appleby for most of the game forcing him to shoot off-balance shots. O.J. struggled in the 1st half, but bounced back in the 2nd after taking a nasty fall and hit a few shots that put the game out of reach. He showed an improvement in making passes to the open man and the result was a team-high 5 assists. Taj also played a steady game scoring 10 pts off 5-7 shooting and played hard on the defensive boards despite having to battle 2-3 Huskies at a time. I completely agreed with Mike Montgomery's comments during the game about SC needing to improve in team rebounding. Our guards are doing way too much watching and not providing help down low.
My early prediction for this Saturday's game against the Bruins at Pauley is that our young team is going to get a heavy dose of humility in terms of discipline/fundamentals. I see it as a positive since I think it will be a good lesson to learn before heading to play the Oregon schools. The Oregon trip is one we could sweep and in order to do that we're going to have to learn to execute offensively and do the so-called little things right. A full week of practice and a game against a team that does those things right, should prep us well.