SPOKANE, Wash. -- Kyle Weaver did it all for No. 17
Washington State on Saturday.
Weaver scored 17 points, including the 1,000th of his career,
and shut down Southern Cal's O.J. Mayo as Washington State crushed
the Trojans 74-50 to end a three-game losing streak.
Weaver made all eight of his field goal attempts, while limiting
Mayo to 6-for-18 shooting. Weaver added seven rebounds, five
assists and four steals.
"I wanted to make everything tough for him tonight," Weaver
said of Mayo, the heralded freshman.
The 24-point win was the biggest Pac-10 victory margin for the
Cougars this season.
Washington State (18-5, 6-5) shot 59.6 percent from the floor
and had nine steals against the Trojans. It was their only win in a
four-game home stand, and only their fourth win in the past nine
games, a streak which threatened to derail a season that had seen
the Cougars rise to No. 4 in the nation.
Weaver said that before the game, coach Tony Bennett didn't say
a word to the team.
"He wrote 'Now is the time' on the board and walked out,"
Weaver said. "This was one of the first games we actually got
ourselves, before the game, a little riled up to play."
Southern Cal coach Tim Floyd got riled up during the game. After
Mayo hit the floor during a drive to the basket, Floyd rushed onto
the court to complain about the lack of a foul call, automatically
earning one technical. He continued to complain, picking up a
second technical and was ejected with 4:49 left.
The Trojans (15-8, 6-5) scored only one point the rest of the
game. They lost for only the second time in the past eight games.
"It was our goal to get to the line," Floyd said. His team
shot just eight free throws, making three.
"I can't talk about the officiating because I want to coach the
next game," Floyd said. "I'm getting too old to get kicked out of
games. I don't know what happened tonight. I must have got a good
Mayo, who averages 20 points, led the Trojans with 14 points.
"I was just trying to get to the line against Weaver," said
Mayo, who made one of two free throws. "We just lost our poise."
Taj Gibson, who averages 10 points, had two for USC. Davon
Jefferson added 13.
The Trojans shot only 36 percent in the first half and trailed
29-19 at halftime. They shot 54 percent in the second half, but the
Cougars were shooting 66.7 percent to pull away to an easy win and
a season sweep of the Trojans.
Washington State forced four steals in the first nine minutes of
the second half, while the offense made six of its first 10 shots
for a 45-29 lead.
After Angelo Johnson's 3-pointer for USC narrowed the lead to
58-46 with 5:04 left, the Cougars went on a 10-1 run -- six points
by Weaver -- for a 68-47 lead.
Weaver's first basket of the game gave him 1,000 points for his
career, becoming the 29th Cougar to reach that milestone. Fellow
guard Derrick Low became the 28th earlier this season, and they are
the first teammates to reach that mark together since Terry Kelly
and Don Collins in 1980.
It was the first time in eight games the Cougars scored at least
Bennett said his team never panicked despite its recent slide,
because it played pretty well during the first losing streak of his
two-season coaching career.
"I don't think they were shaken and rattled too bad," Bennett
said. "But the timing after dropping three at home was
Senior forward Robbie Cowgill admitted that the three losses had
conjured up the early seasons of his career, when the Cougars lost
"We started reminiscing about the old days, when that was what
it was like," Cowgill said. "It was just fun to win, man."