LAS VEGAS (AP) — Jarred DuBois scored 15 of his 22 points in the second half, Jordan Loveridge added 15 points and Utah opened the Pac-12 tournament with a 69-66 win over short-handed Southern California on Wednesday.
Utah (14-17) hounded USC defensively in the first half and withstood a couple of second-half runs by the Trojans to earn a spot Thursday’s quarterfinals against second-seeded California.
USC (14-18) gave the Utes a run despite playing without leading rebounder Dewayne Dedmon and backup center James Blasczyk, who were suspended indefinitely for violating team rules.
The Trojans fought back from a 13-point deficit in the second half to make it close and outscored Utah 42-14 inside. USC struggled from the perimeter, though, hitting 3 of 15 shots from 3-point range and spent most of the game trying to claw back from deficits.