TCU downs USC in Forth Worth
Texas Christian University defeated University of Southern California 81-69 at the Daniel-Meyer Coliseum on Monday.
Ronnie Moss erupted for a game-high 20 points to lead the Horned Frogs to their fifth win in seven games. Hank Thorns and Nicola Gacesa added 12 points each for TCU, which posted its first win over a Pac-10 school since 2002. Thorns also dished out eight
assists while Gacesa had seven rebounds.
Nikola Vucevic topscored for USC with 16 points and hauled down 10 rebounds. Alex Stepheson also posted a double-double performance of 14 points and 10 boards for the Trojans, who fell to 4-4.
TCU started out strong, racing to a 13-6 start behind the hot shooting of Thorns and Gacesa. But USC unleashed a 9-1 run later to take a 29-28 lead with 3:30 remaining in the first-half. The lead, however, proved to be temporary as the Horned Frogs answered
back with a 10-2 run to build a 38-31 half-time lead.
TCU maintained its fiery form after the break, scoring the first seven points of the second half to extend its lead to 45-31. The Trojans eventually trimmed the Frogs’ lead but could not come closer than eight points.
“I think it is going very well. The one thing you are seeing is the team getting more and more confidence every game. They are playing the right way. We are becoming a better defensive team, and over the last couple of games we have become a better rebounding
team,” TCU head coach Jim Christian said.
“When we can stop people down on their break is when we are at our best, and that is what we have been able to do.”
USC head coach Kevin O’Neill has nothing but praises for TCU.
“They deserved to win. They played a good game. They had high energy. We’re just who we are right now. It’s going to take us some time. For us, it’s a challenge that we have to meet,” he said.
He also stressed the weaknesses of his team.
“Our intensity level has got to get better. Our communication has got to get better. As we go along, we’re a team that really needs to improve. The only way for freshman at this level, when they play these kinds of minutes, to get better is to just play
them. That’s all there is to it,” he said.
The Frogs will have little rest as they are scheduled to take on Prairie View A&M tomorrow. The Trojans will resume their campaign against 19th-ranked Texas on 5 December. USC won its first two games then lost its next two assignments. The Trojans then had
another two-game winning streak but again dropped their next two games.