UCLA finishes sweep of USC with 83-73 win

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LOS ANGELES (AP) - UCLA coach Steve Alford channeled his inner Bobby Knight and gave his team the kind of stern halftime lecture he used to hear himself numerous times during his playing days at Indiana.

Norman Powell scored 10 of his 21 points during a 3½-minute span of the second half, Jordan Adams had 17 points and eight rebounds, and the Bruins completed a season sweep of USC with an 83-73 victory on Saturday night.

Kyle Anderson had 15 points, 10 rebounds and eight assists for UCLA (18-5, 7-3 Pac-12), helping the Bruins beat their archrivals for the seventh time in the last eight meetings.

“We got chewed out as soon as we walked into the locker room,” Adams said. “We were fine getting chewed out. We’re used to it. Coach Alford yelled at me, Norman and Kyle, and we came out in the second half with a different mindset. Norman really picked it up in the second half from the get-go, and Kyle had a fantastic second half. This is our rivalry game, so we had to match their intensity.”

Byron Wesley had 27 points, eight rebounds and four assists for USC (10-13, 1-9). The Trojans have lost four in a row and nine of 10, all against conference teams, following a 9-4 start against non-conference opponents. Two of those losses were to Stanford and Oregon State, marking the first back-to-back overtime defeats in school history.

UCLA equaled its highest point total ever against USC on Jan. 5 at Pauley Pavilion, scoring 36 points in transition during a 107-73 rout - the first time the schools faced each other in the conference opener since 1991.

Trojans 7-foot-2 center Omar Oraby fouled out of that one with more than 7 1-2 minutes remaining after injuring his left ankle early in the game, and played 14 minutes without a rebound. He had five points and six boards in the rematch.

The Bruins, trying to avoid the second-half blahs that plagued them in their previous three games, stormed out of the locker room after intermission with a 10-0 run that turned a six-point halftime deficit into a 45-41 lead with 17:13 left in the game. David Wear capped the rally with a 3-pointer, one of 10 by UCLA in 20 attempts.

“I knew they would come out and compete in the second half, and we knew it would be a battle,” USC coach Andy Enfield said. “UCLA is very dangerous. They have great players at every position, and they showed it in the second half. They elevated their game. You might stop one or two of them on a couple possessions, but then others step up.

“It just seems like there’s a little stretch in each game where the other team outplays us and goes on a run,” Enfield added. “UCLA really came out and stepped it up in the second half when they had to. We had some wide open looks, but we just didn’t convert.”

J.T. Terrell hit a 3 and Nikola Jovanovic added a layup 20 seconds later to put the Trojans back in front 46-45 with 16:38 to play, but it was the last time they led. UCLA scored the next 14 points - including 3s by Powell and Adams - to build a 59-46 cushion, and USC got no closer than 78-71 on a three-point play by Wesley with 1:49 remaining.

“We really wanted them to shoot the ball at an angle,” Powell said. “They’re a team that drives and looks to kick out, so we wanted to prevent that. And since I’m the defensive stopper, I needed to take it upon my shoulders to lead the team that way. I wanted to keep attacking and lead the team defensively. That’s what happened, and the team fed off that.”

Wesley, who had 21 points in the previous meeting, powered USC to a 41-35 halftime lead with 18 points while going 4 for 4 behind the arc. Neither team led by more than five until the junior guard from Rancho Cucamonga hit back-to-back 3s and added a layup during a 3 1-2 minute span to help the Trojans pull ahead 34-24 with 4:48 left in the half.

“I feel really bad, honestly,” Wesley said. “To have a lapse for five minutes in the second half, it was really the story of the game. Once we stopped getting stops, it really changed the game for us. We dug ourselves that hole, and it was really too late to get out.”

After each of Wesley’s first two baskets, Oraby blocked a layup at the other end - one by Zach LaVine, the other by Tony Parker.

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