The USC Trojans look for a season split with the Oregon Ducks tonight at Galen Center, and a weekend sweep, which would be the first for the Trojans in Pac-10 play this season. Oregon beat USC 68-62 in Eugene on January 13, the opening night for Matthew Knight Arena, the new home court for the Ducks. Both teams are fighting for positioning in the Pac-10 tournament, trying to avoid a 7-10 seed and playing on the first day.
USC built a big first-half lead and held on to win 67-56 Thursday against Oregon State, led by Nikola Vucevic with 17 points and 10 rebounds. It was the 13th double-double of the season for Vucevic. In addition, the Beavers committed 19 turnovers, the most against a USC opponent this season. The number to watch for USC is 40%; when the Trojans hold opponents to a field goal percentage under 40%, they are 10-1, but when their foe shoots 40% or higher, USC is just 3-10.
The Ducks are led by Joevan Catron, who won the Pac-10 Player of the Week award last week with the Ducks' sweep of the Washington schools. The senior forward, who scored 15 points in Thursday's loss to UCLA, leads the Ducks with 16.0 points and 6.5 rebounds per game this season. Catron did not play against the Trojans in their earlier meeting this season.
Here are tonight's probable starting lineups:
Oregon (12-12, 5-7)
- Guard: Garrett Sim
- Guard: Johnathan Loyd
- Forward: E.J. Singler
- Forward: Tyrone Nared
- Forward: Joevan Catron
USC (13-11, 5-6)
- Guard: Jio Fontan
- Guard: Maurice Jones
Forward: Marcus Simmons
- Forward: Alex Stephenson
Forward: Nikola Vucevic
USC is 13-2 at Galen Center this season. Oregon is 2-5 on the road. Tonight's 7:30 p.m. PST game will be broadcast on Prime Ticket. Paul Sunderland, former Trojan Brandon Granville, and Kelli Tennant will call the game.
For more information on tonight's game, be sure to read Conquest Chronicles.