No. 19 USC dominates 1st half in 72-58 win over Oregon

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Tahj Eaddy scored 24 points and No. 19 Southern California led by 16 after a blistering start on its way to a 72-58 victory over Oregon on Monday night.

The Trojans (19-4, 13-3) moved into sole possession of first place in the Pac-12 by dominating the Ducks with just a seven-man rotation. Second-leading rebounder Isaiah Mobley strained his right calf earlier in the day and missed his first start of the season.

LJ Figueroa and Eric Williams Jr. scored 14 points each for Oregon, which had its five-game winning streak snapped. The Ducks (14-5, 9-4) came in tied with USC and UCLA at three losses apiece in league play.

Eaddy scored USC’s first nine points — all on 3-pointers — and the Trojans raced to a 17-1 lead while the Ducks missed their first 12 shots. Eaddy, a graduate transfer from Santa Clara, hit five 3s in the half, his last one giving USC a 23-point cushion, its largest of the period.

The Trojans made 17 of 26 shots in the half. Oregon missed seven of eight 3-pointers and shot 10 of 29 from the floor.

The Ducks tried a full-court press in the second half, but it didn’t stop the explosive Trojans. They got 15 points and a season high-tying 11 rebounds from Drew Peterson, and 11 points from Evan Mobley. USC outrebounded the Ducks 39-26.

Eaddy’s sixth 3-pointer early in the second half extended USC’s lead to 26.

After trailing by 18, the Ducks got to 64-54 on consecutive 3s by Figueroa, who had two, and Williams, who finished with four fouls and nine rebounds.

Max Agbonkpolo hit a 3-pointer from the right corner for the Trojans, sparking a 5-0 run capped by Mobley’s third dunk of the game that kept them ahead 72-56.

The Ducks outscored USC 36-29 in the second half, but were held without a field goal over the final 5 minutes.

BIG PICTURE

Oregon: The Ducks have three games left, all on the road, but two of their opponents have losing records.

USC: The Trojans responded fiercely from a nine-point weekend loss to Arizona that dropped them two spots in the Top 25 this week and snapped their seven-game winning streak. They’ve won 14 of their last 16 and have four games remaining — three on the road — ahead of the Pac-12 Tournament in Las Vegas.

UP NEXT

Oregon: Visits Stanford on Wednesday.

USC: Visits Colorado on Wednesday. The Buffaloes are 8-1 at home.

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More AP college basketball: https://apnews.com/hub/college-basketball and https://twitter.com/AP_Top25

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