USC squeaks past Texas 59-53 in OT

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by Associated Press

khou.com

Posted on November 21, 2012 at 12:03 AM

LAHAINA, Hawaii—USC’s trip to Hawaii has been less then picturesque. But the Trojans are better off than Texas after beating the Longhorns 59-53 in overtime Tuesday at the Maui Invitational in a game in which neither team shot well.

"Both of us were in desperate mode," USC coach Kevin O’Neill said. "It was a rock fight."

Dewayne Dedmon hit a layup and a free throw with less than 2 minutes left to put USC up for good.

Sheldon McClellan banked in a putback jumper with 25.9 seconds left to get Texas within two points, but J.T. Terrell made two free throws on the next possession to seal the win.

"At least we competed," Texas coach Rick Barnes said, clearly still smarting from his team’s 13-point loss to Division II Chaminade on Monday night—an upset that generated enough buzz to make the 1,200-student Catholic school in Honolulu a worldwide trending topic on Twitter.

Eric Wise led USC (3-1) with 13 points. Julien Lewis had 17 for Texas (2-2).

In a game with 12 ties and nine lead changes, neither team led by more than three after halftime until overtime.

Both teams combined to shoot under 36 percent—under 30 percent in the second half. The Trojans and Longhorns shot an identical 18.2 percent from 3-point range—making two 3-pointers each.

USC will play Marquette on Wednesday in the tournament’s fifth-place game. Texas will play Mississippi State in the tournament’s seventh-place game.

The teams were tied at 26 at halftime after trading big swings the first 20 minutes. USC went up by seven in the first 5 minutes, then Texas came back to take a 5-point lead on a layup from Ioannis Papapetrou with 5:47 left in the half.

In the second half, Lewis made a jumper from just inside the free throw line with 1:36 left to give Texas a 2-point advantage, but J.T. Terrell tied it at 47 with 36 seconds left with a transition dunk off a half-court assist from Byron Wesley. Lewis missed a potential game-winner with 4 seconds left and USC couldn’t get another shot off, so the game went to overtime.

"I’m really proud of our guys bouncing back," O’Neill said. "We got whacked last night."

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