Stewart’s 3 lifts USC past ASU

first_imgThe Trojans got the ball in the hands of the red-hot Pruitt, who had made five 3-pointers in the game, but this time he missed. Ryan Francis, the smallest player on the court who is generously listed at 5-foot-11, sneaked in to get the rebound and kicked it out to Stewart standing behind the 3-point line. Without hesitation, Stewart drilled the shot. The Sun Devils missed a half-court shot at the buzzer. “When I tried for the block at the end and got the foul, I thought, `Oh man, I’m going to lose the game like that,’ ” Stewart said. “I kept my head up and then they gave me the opportunity to redeem myself and get the last shot.” [email protected] (818) 713-3607 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! Lodrick Stewart’s first shot of the second half tinged the back rim and fell into the net with 2.1 seconds remaining to give USC an improbable 66-65 victory Thursday at Arizona State in its first Pacific-10 Conference road game of the season. It was the only basket of the game for Stewart, who got into an early funk with four first-half misses and decided to avoid shooting after slightly spraining his right ankle. TEMPE, Ariz. – For an entire half, USC’s best shooter played offense like the ball was a hot potato that he wanted to get out of his hands as quickly as possible. It was only fitting that, with seconds left, the ball would come his way again. This time he wouldn’t have another choice. He had to shoot it. center_img AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MORECoach Doc Rivers a “fan” from way back of Jazz’s Jordan Clarkson“My ankle was causing a lot of pressure in my leg,” Stewart said. “I didn’t feel like I had the lift. I didn’t want to shoot it and miss, especially in crunch time.” USC, behind most of the game, trailed by six points with exactly two minutes remaining to a team that was picked to finish last in the conference in the preseason media poll. The Trojans (11-3, 2-1) pulled out the game with three difficult 3-point shots. First, Gabe Pruitt launched one from four feet behind the line for his 30th point. USC got the ball back after a good defensive series forced a miss as the shot clock expired. After a timeout, Nick Young drained an early 3-pointer from the top of the key to tie the game, 63-63. It looked like Stewart, who was scoreless despite entering the game averaging 13.5 points, would be the goat after he committed a foul trying to go for the block of a jump shot with 27.4 seconds left. Bryson Krueger stepped to the line and drained both free throws to give the Sun Devils (6-6, 0-3) a two-point lead. last_img

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