Stanford
USC
64 - 77 Final
  for this game

Mayo helps USC record key win over Stanford

Mar 8, 2008 - 11:10 PM LOS ANGELES (Ticker) -- Needing another signature win to strengthen its NCAA Tournament resume, Southern California got just that thanks in large part to O.J. Mayo.

The freshman sensation scored a game-high 25 points Saturday to lead the Trojans to a 77-64 upset of seventh-ranked Stanford in the Pacific-10 Conference.

The Trojans (20-10, 11-7 Pac-10) have won five of their past six games, while the Cardinal dropped their second straight. On Thursday, Stanford (24-6, 13-5) lost in overtime to UCLA, which clinched the regular-season conference title with the win.

"No hangover," Stanford coach Trent Johnson said. "Fatigue was not a factor. USC was better, they were quicker to the ball."

With USC leading, 39-31, at the half, Mayo took charge.

Mayo scored six points as the Trojans maintained their eight-point lead through the opening minutes of the second half. Mayo also threw a perfect alley-oop pass to Davon Jefferson at the 10:08 mark to give USC a double-digit lead at 56-45.

Mayo scored USC's next five points on a jumper and 3-pointer as the lead increased to 61-49 with just under eight minutes remaining.

"(Mayo) is the most misrepresented, misportrayed athlete I've seen coming into college," USC coach Tim Floyd said. "He's been very dependable and accountable. He's a great kid."

Stanford got back within 69-60 on three free throws from Kenny Brown and a 3-pointer from Drew Shiller.

"I just tried to provide a spark," Brown said. "We did get (the USC lead) down, we just couldn't get over that hump. I think we lost a little gas."

The Trojans put the game away late, as Mayo sank five free throws in the final two minutes.

Taj Gibson scored 12 of his 20 points in the first half, including back-to-back dunks just over six minutes in to give USC an early 19-6 lead. He added a free throw and a layup off an assist from Mayo as the lead grew to 22-8 with 11:42 left before the break.

Gibson also added 11 rebounds for the Trojans, who shot 47 percent (28-60) from the floor. Dwight Lewis added 14 points and Jefferson also cracked double digits with 11.

As a team the Trojans held a 43-30 advantage on the boards.

"We were able to get them on the boards. I couldn't envision that going in," Floyd said. "Taj was terrific on the boards and we got a lot of rebounds from our guards."

Brown paced the Cardinal with 19 points, including four 3-pointers. Robin Lopez added 16 points and Brook Lopez chipped in with 11 points and 10 rebounds for Stanford, which shot just 32 percent (20-62) from the field.