NCAA Women

No. 8 Seed USC Women’s Basketball Edged Out In Overtime For 62-57 Loss In NCAA First Round

No. 8 Seed USC Women’s Basketball Edged Out In Overtime For 62-57 Loss In NCAA First Round

BLACKSBURG, VA. — In its first trip to the NCAA Tournament since 2014, the No. 8 seeded USC women’s basketball team was up against a tough No. 9 seeded South Dakota State squad tonight at Cassell Coliseum in Blacksburg, Va. The Trojan defense was effective, but interruptions on offense made for a back-and-forth battle. The Trojans would force overtime on a late 3-pointer from Destiny Littleton, but the Jackrabbits moved ahead in OT and snagged a 62-57 win over the Trojans. USC wraps the 2022-23 season with a 21-10 overall record, while South Dakota State extended its win streak to 22 straight and goes to 29-5 overall.

USC gripped a 10-point lead in the first quarter, but South Dakota State countered with a second-quarter surge. The score tied up four times in the second frame before the Jackrabbits landed a late 3-pointer to take a 23-20 lead at halftime. USC was shooting just 26 percent from the floor to trail South Dakota State’s 36-percent effort, and the teams were even on the boards at 18 apiece at the break. USC was able to reel in the Jackrabbits and held a three-point lead in the fourth before a 6-0 run got the Jacks back on top, forcing USC to find the Littleton equalizer and bring up OT. SDSU managed 17 points in overtime — 13 of which came from the free-throw line — to help net the win. By the final buzzer, South Dakota State had gone 22-of-27 from the free-throw line in the game to USC’s 9-of-14 outing. Overall, USC shot 31.3 percent from the floor to trail the Jackrabbits’ 35.2 percent effort. SDSU also wrapped things up ahead on the boards 45-39, and the teams were matched with 20 turnovers apiece.

USC’s scoring effort was led by Destiny Littleton’s 18 points — 10 of which came in overtime. Rayah Marshall added a double-double for the Trojans with 17 points and 13 rebounds to go along with a whopping seven blocks. That effort marked a new program record for single-season blocks from the sophomore, who posted 98 blocks in 2022-23 to surpass the previous record of 95 set by Lisa Leslie. USC also received 10 points from Kadi Sissoko. South Dakota State, meanwhile, got a game-high 29 points from Myah Selland along with 16 from Paige Meyer.

Three early blocks from Rayah Marshall keyed a tough USC defense out of the gates as the Trojans worked ahead 9-2 in the first five minutes. Kayla Williams planted a 3-pointer along the way, as four different Trojans struck in that early surge. As…

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