No. 24 USC tops San Diego State for Wooden Legacy title

ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) – Isaiah Mobley scored 18 points and tallied 12 rebounds and USC’s No.24 stifling defense earned him a 58-43 victory over San Diego State on Friday night in the Paycom Wooden Legacy title match.

Drew Peterson scored 16 points and Chevez Goodwin added 10 as the Trojans improved to 6-0. They held the Aztecs 32.1 percent from shots and just 15 points in the first half.

“I feel like I played outside of the rhythm of the game,” said Mobley, who was named the tournament MVP. “I felt like they had smaller defenders on me so I knew I could take it down. My teammates believe in me, so do the coaches, just to put me in a position to score. It wasn’t pretty, but we did.

Trey Pulliam scored 11 points, while Lamont Butler and Aguek Arop each have nine for San Diego State (4-2), which was held down in its weakest first half since 14 points against Air Force. January 12, 2019.

The Aztecs got only one assist in the first half out of six baskets made and seven assists in total in the game. San Diego State also lost the rebound battle, with USC coming down 49 to 33 for the SDSU.

“It was a very good defensive team. We’re a good defensive team so I recognize when we play a one, ”said San Diego State coach Brian Dutcher. “You grow up winning, you grow up losing and now unfortunately we have to grow up from loss.”

Peterson wasn’t just 6 of 10 on the field for the Trojans, he helped keep SDSU leading scorer Matt Bradley three points on a 1-of-7 shot.

“We used to spell Drew REW. There was no D in his game so we called him Rew Peterson, “USC coach Andy Enfield joked, eliciting a chuckle from Peterson, who was sitting next to him. “Now we call him Drew because… he’s learned to use his length, he’s learned to anticipate practices, close and challenge shots. “

Both teams struggled to score before half-time, but the Trojans continued 8-0 to lead 22-15 at the break. San Diego state shot just 23.1% from the field in the first half, while USC shot 33.3%.

The Trojans started the second half with a 10-2 run to take a 32-17 lead with 15:56 remaining after a Peterson knockdown. The Aztecs only reached the 20-point mark after a 3-point Arop with 15:03 to go.

Boogie Ellis, who entered USC’s lead with 17.0 points per game, was limited to just two points on 1 in 6 shot.

The 6-0 start is the Trojans’ best since the 2017-18 team opened the season 14-0 and ultimately advanced to the second round of the NCAA tournament after winning the prelims.

BIG PICTURE

San Diego State: A three-game winning streak against the Top 25 teams has come to an end for the Aztecs, who will face Long Beach State at home on Tuesday before a trip to Ann Arbor to face No.20 Michigan on December 4. … San Diego State was 10-2 in neutral-venue games before losing on Friday.

USC: The Trojans have back-to-back wins over Saint Joseph’s and San Diego State in their final warm-up games ahead of their Pac-12 Conference opener at home against Utah on Wednesday.

FOLLOWING

San Diego State: Hosts Long Beach State Tuesday.

USC: At home against Utah on Wednesday.

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