Women of Troy fall to Oregon State

first_imgThe USC women’s basketball team is facing a four-game losing streak for the first time since coach Cynthia Cooper-Dyke became head coach. The losses have come at the hands of top-ranked teams, including the Beavers, at No. 7 and Stanford, at No. 15.Oregon State University (19-1, 9-0 Pac-12) dominated the night with offensive and defensive prowess, stunting USC 68-35.“Their half court offense was definitely a strength of theirs; they execute quite efficiently,”       Cooper-Dyke said. “They made us play 20 to 25 seconds of defense every time down.”The Women of Troy (11-9, 3-6 Pac-12) showed promise in the beginning. Though they never had a lead, USC responded to the OSU and tied with the Beavers three times. Then USC began to miss shots.The dry spell gave the Beavers time to make plenty of mistakes and they also went cold offensively for four minutes. Then OSU got back into an offensive groove while the Women of Troy continued to miss shots.“We were taking a lot of quick shots,” junior forward Kaneisha Horn said. “Oregon State, they just executed.”The effort in the Beavers did not stop the fight in the Women of Troy. USC still collected several rebounds that gave missing shots second chances. Horn scored 10 points and five rebounds; sophomore guard Brianna Barrett came up second in scoring for the Trojans at seven points and managed to commit three steals.“We did really well defensively,” senior forward Alexyz Vaioletama said. “What hurt us was offense. We had a couple of open shots, we took them, but they just didn’t fall.”The Trojan offense was crippled by the blocks from 6’6” center Ruth Hamblin. The stalwart used her wingspan to deny the offensive efforts of six Trojans throughout both halves. Hamblin acquired eight blocks Saturday night.“Their guards would force our guards to penetrate into the defense of Hamblin,” Cooper-Dyke said. “It was a tough process to overcome.”The Beavers forced the Women of Troy to make difficult shots. Barrett launched the only successful 3-point shot; OSU sank five from beyond the arc in the first half. The Beavers lead 27 to 15 at halftime. The Trojans shot just 21 percent in the first half.The Women of Troy earned 10 points in the paint and the bench also contributed four points in the first half.“In the first half we played solid defense; we held them to 27 points,” Cooper-Dyke said. “Then we couldn’t execute offensively,”The second half started on a bad note for USC. The Beavers would produce five more points before Vaioletama landed a lay up.  Then the Women of Troy suffered from missed shots and the iron-curtain defense of Hamblin.Scoring came easily for the Beavers. Guard Jamie Weisner earned 21 points and four rebounds, while forward Deven Hunter racked in 15 points and 10 rebounds.“We didn’t do a very good job with getting back on defense,” Cooper-Dyke said. “It’s one thing to get back and be in the paint, but Oregon State is a team that has players that stood out by the 3-point line and start up the shot,”The Beavers moved the ball effectively and landed many shots from beyond the arc. USC found opportunities to score points through free throws, gaining a team total of 6 points from the key.Freshmen forward Amy Okonkwo managed a pair of layups and redshirt sophomore Jordan Adams also scored down low. However, USC’s efforts were no match for the Beavers offensive flood and defensive dam.“We were just outplayed,” said Vaioletama. “For Monday we really need to work on our offensive game.”The Women of Troy will face the Oregon Ducks on Monday, Feb. 2 at 5 p.m. The Ducks are (9-11, 2-7 Pac-12) are currently No.9  in the Pac-12. They come off a close win against the UCLA Bruins 67-65.“We got to pick up the pieces from a tough loss and work on the things that we do well,”           Cooper-Dyke said. “We’ve got to finish better when we do have those opportunities underneath the basket. That’s gonna be big for us.”last_img

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