for this game

Southern Cal overcomes mistakes, tops California

Nov 9, 2008 - 5:19 AM By Jon Reger PA SportsTicker COntributing Writer

LOS ANGELES (Ticker) -- For two of the best teams in the Pac-10 Conference, sixth-ranked Southern California and No. 22 California certainly did not play like it.

Penalties and turnovers affected both teams, but USC managed to hold on and defeat Cal, 17-3, on Saturday at the Los Angeles Coliseum.

The Trojans (8-1, 6-1 Pac-10) have beaten Cal (6-3, 4-2) each of the last five seasons, and Trojans head coach Pete Carroll improved to 25-0 in the month of November.

USC committed nine penalties for 95 yards and fumbled three times, losing one. The Trojans also had two interceptions in the first half that were nullified by penalties.

"We have to learn from our mistakes," USC quarterback Mark Sanchez said. "We made a lot of them tonight. We were thankful the defense was playing that well."

If USC does not get a BCS bowl game, it certainly improved its chances for a Rose Bowl berth, knocking Cal from contention.

"I think if our defense continues to do what we are doing we will give the offense more opportunities to score," USC defensive tackle Fili Moala said. "The way we are playing, we have to be happy with the way our defense is playing. We are giving ourselves chances to win games."

Oregon State, which handed USC its only loss of the season, also has one loss in conference and can only lose the Rose Bowl invitation if it loses a game and USC wins out.

The two teams traded field goals before USC got the first touchdown of the game, a 19-yard pass from Mark Sanchez to Patrick Turner with 6:30 left in the first half.

Cal started the game with Nate Longshore at quarterback and watched him complete 11-of-15 passes for 79 yards in the first half.

But Golden Bears coach Jeff Tedford put in Kevin Riley, who was questionable due to a concussion, at quarterback in the second half.

"There was a lot of pass rush in the first half and we felt like Kevin was going to be able to move around a little more," Tedford said. "I didn't think Nate was playing poorly, just a couple of bad decisions. I just felt with the pass rush, Kevin could make a few guys miss."

Riley threatened to tie the game on the Golden Bears' first possession of the second half, moving to USC's 15-yard line, but was intercepted by Josh Pinkard in the end zone to stop the drive.

"It was a tip off, Will Harris made a great break on it and made a tip on it," Pinkard said. "I just stayed focus on the ball and got it."

The Trojans sealed the victory with three minutes remaining when Sanchez threw a 6-yard swing pass to Ronald Johnson, who dove into the end zone.

"Mistakes throughout the whole game, whether it was a dropped pass or a missed block or a penalty hurt us," Cal center Alex Mack said. "Penalties kill drives. It gets more and more difficult every time. Having a touchdown taking away because of a penalty really hurt. We had chances when they made mistakes and we just didn't capitalize on it."








  • NCAAF FINAL
    1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL
    --- --- --- --- -----
    CALIFORNIA (21) 0 3 0 0 3
    USC (7) 3 7 0 7 17 FINAL
    SCORING SUMMARY
    1ST QUARTER: USC - FG, DAVID BUEHLER 27 YD, 4:56. USC
    3-0
    2ND QUARTER: CALIFORNIA - FG, GIORGIO TAVECCHIO 35 YD, 6:39.
    CALIFORNIA 3-3
    USC - TD, PATRICK TURNER 20 YD PASS FROM
    MARK SANCHEZ (DAVID BUEHLER
    KICK

    Nov 8 11:22 PM


  • NCAAF
    TD USC
    RONALD JOHNSON 6 YD PASS FROM MARK SANCHEZ
    (DAVID BUEHLER KICK)
    CALIFORNIA (21) 3
    USC (7) 17 2:59 LEFT, 4TH QTR

    California(25) 3, USC(6) 17  4th - 2:59Nov 8 11:10 PM


  • NCAAF END, 3RD QTR
    1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL
    --- --- --- --- -----
    CALIFORNIA (21) 0 3 0 3
    USC (7) 3 7 0 10 END, 3RD QTR
    SCORING SUMMARY
    1ST QUARTER: USC - FG, DAVID BUEHLER 27 YD, 4:56. USC
    3-0
    2ND QUARTER: CALIFORNIA - FG, GIORGIO TAVECCHIO 35 YD, 6:39.
    CALIFORNIA 3-3
    USC - TD, PATRICK TURNER 20 YD PASS FROM
    MARK SANCHEZ (DAV

    Nov 8 10:34 PM


  • NCAAF HALFTIME
    1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL
    --- --- --- --- -----
    CALIFORNIA (21) 0 3 3
    USC (7) 3 7 10 HALFTIME
    SCORING SUMMARY
    1ST QUARTER: USC - FG, DAVID BUEHLER 27 YD, 4:56. USC
    3-0
    2ND QUARTER: CALIFORNIA - FG, GIORGIO TAVECCHIO 35 YD, 6:39.
    CALIFORNIA 3-3
    USC - TD, PATRICK TURNER 20 YD PASS FROM
    MARK SANCHEZ (DAVID BUEHL

    Nov 8 9:32 PM
  • 49
    roots
    #1 Cards Fan Added 5 roots

    California(25) 3, USC(6) 10  2nd - 5:01Nov 8 9:16 PM
  • 44
    roots
    Sweetness34 Added 5 roots

    California(25) 3, USC(6) 10  2nd - 5:01Nov 8 9:15 PM


  • NCAAF
    TD USC
    PATRICK TURNER 20 YD PASS FROM MARK SANCHEZ
    (DAVID BUEHLER KICK)
    CALIFORNIA (21) 3
    USC (7) 10 5:01 LEFT, 2ND QTR

    California(25) 3, USC(6) 10  2nd - 5:01Nov 8 9:11 PM


  • NCAAF
    FG CALIFORNIA
    GIORGIO TAVECCHIO 35 YD
    CALIFORNIA (21) 3
    USC (7) 3 8:21 LEFT, 2ND QTR

    California(25) 3, USC(6) 3  2nd - 8:21Nov 8 9:04 PM
  • 39
    roots
    WildHog Added 5 roots

    California(25) 0, USC(6) 3  2nd - 14:55Nov 8 8:57 PM


  • NCAAF END, 1ST QTR
    1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL
    --- --- --- --- -----
    CALIFORNIA (21) 0 0
    USC (7) 3 3 END, 1ST QTR
    SCORING SUMMARY
    1ST QUARTER: USC - FG, DAVID BUEHLER 27 YD, 4:56. USC
    3-0

    Nov 8 8:46 PM


  • NCAAF
    FG USC
    DAVID BUEHLER 27 YD
    CALIFORNIA (21) 0
    USC (7) 3 10:04 LEFT, 1ST QTR

    California(25) 0, USC(6) 3  1st - 10:04Nov 8 8:23 PM
  • 34
    roots
    RUWTbot Added 19 roots (Ranked Teams)

    California(25) 0, USC(6) 0  1st - 14:55Nov 8 8:14 PM
  • 15
    roots
    rundog2293 Added 5 roots

    California(25) vs. USC(6)Nov 8 1:30 PM
  • 10
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    Lemonman Added 5 roots

    California(25) vs. USC(6)Nov 8 12:41 PM
  • 5
    roots
    GREGnKY Added 5 roots

    California(25) vs. USC(6)Nov 8 9:16 AM