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USC looks to keep home win streak intact

first_imgAfter going 1-2 in the Battle 4 Atlantis tournament in the Bahamas last week, USC’s men’s basketball team returns home to the Galen Center this weekend to try and maintain their spotless home record against Boston College.Breakout · Senior point guard Pe’Shon Howard isn’t known for his offensive explosivness, but the Maryland transfer led the Trojans with 17.7 points per game in the Battle 4 Atlantis over Thanksgiving. – Corey Marquitti | Daily TrojanThe Trojans (5-3) took its share of lickings at the hands of Villanova and Wake Forest in the Battle 4 Atlantis, but were able to rebound in the tournament’s final day with an 84-78 victory over Xavier.Head coach Andy Enfield’s team was given some time this week to review the game tapes from the blowout losses in preparation for the visiting Boston College Eagles this weekend.USC did not fare particularly well against another ACC foe in the Demon Deacons from Wake Forest, and looked completely out of sorts offensively. The lackluster play of senior center Omar Oraby was especially troubling.Through the first five games of the season, Oraby seemed to be on his way to the breakout season USC fans were hoping for when he transferred from Rice last year. But in the Battle 4 Atlantis, the Cairo, Egypt native averaged just 4.7 points and 5.3 rebounds per game.Senior point guard Pe’Shon Howard filled the void on offense for the Trojans, averaging 17.7 points while in the Bahamas.Howard will hope to carry over that offensive outburst into USC’s showdown with Boston College (3-5), who has struggled thus far but boasts two dangerous scorers.Guard Olivier Hanlan (21.7 points per game) and forward Ryan Anderson (19.0 points, 7.1 rebounds per game) carry the load offensively for the Eagles, while sophomore guard Joe Rahon chips in 13.4 points per game. No other player averages more than 6.0 points per contest, but the Eagles still manage to put up a robust 78.3 points per game.Boston College does, however, struggle to keep their opponents off the board. The Eagles have only held one opponent (Sacred Heart) below 70 points, and have let up more than 80 points in half of their games.That bodes well for the Trojans, who have excelled in lighting up the scoreboard (75.5 points per game). But they haven’t exactly been efficient, converting 45 percent of their field-goal attempts.The defense has also been porous at times — the 94 points USC gave up to Villanova last week set a Battle 4 Atlantis tournament record, and the team has held just three opponents below the 70-point mark. Fortunately, all three of those matchups occurred at the Galen Center, giving the Trojans hope that they might have the foundation for a solid home-court advantage.The Trojans tip off against the Eagles on Sunday at 7 p.m. in the Galen Center. The game will be broadcast on the Pac-12 Network.last_img read more

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Griffin, Paul make it look easy as L.A. Clippers dominate Miami Heat

first_imgDwyane Wade missed his fourth consecutive game with a strained left hamstring. The Heat are 5-3 when Wade plays this season, 1-3 when he doesn’t.“Not a whole lot to say,” Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said. “That was a blitz in that first quarter. They absolutely knocked us on our heels and we just could never gain our footing after that.”It was over early. Miami held Los Angeles scoreless on the Clippers’ first possession, which ordinarily would be in no way notable in an NBA game. Not in this case — considering the Clippers would score each of the next 11 times they had the basketball, running out to a 34-11 lead and never letting Miami make it a game again. . The Clippers had 39 points with 30 seconds left in the first quarter; the Heat didn’t cross the 39-point threshold until 30 seconds remained in the second quarter.Jamal Crawford had nine assists and J.J. Redick scored 14 points for the Clippers, who shot 56 percent — and that was after the percentage plummeted once Rivers emptied his bench for good midway through the fourth quarter.Mario Chalmers and Luol Deng each scored 13 for Miami. Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error MIAMI — Late in the third quarter, Blake Griffin and Chris Paul found themselves all alone on a fast break, no Miami Heat player even remotely close to them.Everything wasn’t always that easy for the Los Angeles Clippers.It only seemed that way.Paul had 26 points and 12 assists, Griffin added 26 points and the Clippers wasted no time in taking control on the way to a 110-93 win over the Heat on Thursday night.center_img “We’re doing what we’re supposed to do,” Paul said.DeAndre Jordan scored 12 points and grabbed 11 rebounds for the Clippers (7-4), who led 39-15 after one quarter. Jordan’s night: Six shots, all of them dunks, all part of the reason why the Clippers outscored Miami 44-26 in the paint.“I think that’s rare,” Clippers coach Doc Rivers said of Jordan’s all-dunk night. “That might not be for him. … He’s the perfect guy to have on a winning basketball team.”Chris Bosh scored 28 for Miami (6-6), which has dropped three straight home games for the first time since March 3-8, 2011. Rookie reserve Shabazz Napier had a season-high 17 points.“We didn’t have a chance tonight after that first quarter,” Bosh said. “Good team like that, down 20, you can’t do that. We can’t do that. We’re not good enough to keep making mistakes. … It was a clinic they put on us.”last_img read more

Start reading Griffin, Paul make it look easy as L.A. Clippers dominate Miami Heat