Senior point guard Jio Fontan scored 29 points to lead USC to a 60-51 win over Brazilian Division II outfit Pindamonhangaba in Sao Paulo Sunday, the Trojans' first of five scheduled games over a 10-day trip in Brazil this month.
With freshmen Byron Wesley and Alexis Moore and juco transfer Greg Allen not allowed to play until summer-school grades are posted Tuesday, the Trojans had just seven scholarship players available. Fontan scored 14 points in the second quarter to give USC a 31-25 lead at halftime, and transfer Aaron Fuller, playing in his first game for the Trojans, scored seven points in the fourth period to seal the game.
“We didn’t play particularly well, but I thought we played well defensively,” coach Kevin O’Neill said in a statement. “We played hard, but we have a lot of things to work on.”
The game, played in front of an estimated 425 fans at Pindamonhangaba's Centro Esportivo, used a 24-second shot clock and was split into four 10-minute periods.
Fontan's 29 points led all scorers. Fuller added 12 points and 10 rebounds for the Trojans and sophomore forward Garrett Jackson added eight points and 11 rebounds. Highly-touted center Dewayne Dedmon scored four points in limited minutes, accumulating four quick fouls.
USC has a scheduled scrimmage Monday against Sao Jose dos Campos, another team in the city of Sao Paulo. But the plan is to not keep score, which should allow the newcomers to suit up. The Trojans will then play an official exhibition on Tuesday against Division I team Mogi das Cruzes and travel on Wednesday to Rio de Janeiro.