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February 21, 2009

Washington rebounds against Trojans

LOS ANGELES(AP) Quincy Pondexter scored a season-high 22 points and No.22 Washington defeated Southern California 60-51 on Saturday.

Pondexter, who shot 10-for-13 from the field, had eight points in the last 5 1/2 minutes to lead the Huskies (20-7,11-4 Pac-10). Washington reached 20 wins for the first time since the 2005-06 season when it was eliminated by Connecticut in the NCAA regional semifinals.

Isaiah Thomas, the conference's leading freshman scorer with 16.3 points per game, was held to a season-low four points on 2-for-7 shooting for the Huskies. Justin Dentmon had eight points and Venoy Overton added seven.

Daniel Hackett and Dwight Lewis scored 11 points each for the Trojans (16-10, 7-7), who led by four with 5:52 left and scored just one point the rest of the way.

Pondexter's layup with 4:58 left tied the score at 50, and his turnaround jumper 22 seconds later gave Washington the lead for good.

USC took an 18-9 lead on Lewis' fastbreak layup with 14:12 left in the first half. Lewis took off after intercepting a pass from Overton that was intended for Washington's Dentmon and took it down the court.

Overton had seven points during an 18-2 run that helped the Huskies take a 31-28 lead at halftime.

Dentmon, who averages 15.8 ppg, had four points and was 1-for-8 from the field in the first half while Thomas went 0-for-3.

Quotes from UW Head Coach Lorenzo Romar

"This is one of the best feelings in sports, to go on the road and be down against a physical, scrappy, hard, great defensive team at their home and come out on top. We played tough and physical ourselves."

"We were down in a hostile environment to a tough, gritty team in USC, this win is as good as it gets in sports."

"Quincy [Pondexter] was just a man out there today from the tip. No question he is a guy that you have to pay attention to. Of course you don't leave Brockman open and you must pay attention to Dentmon and Thomas because they are six and five in Pac-10 scoring, respectively."

"USC was trying to take Brockman out of the game. By the time that they focused on Quincy he had already done his damage."

"Venoy [Overton] was the catalyst today. He had a couple of steals and loosened us up today. He has been playing a significant role for us the past couple of weeks."

"This was a team effort. When the chips are down, with so much at stake we really came down and played gritty as a team. We were not going to put up with losing the game. When we began to put pressure on them, I saw at that point that we were showing life and we just kept building upon that."

"I am astounded that we found a way to win. Much like the way we played them at home, we shot 37 percent and had 16 turnovers and we were still able to find a way to win."



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