Briana Gilbreath scored 19 points and Cassie Harberts added 17 to lead USC to a 74-67 victory against Washington State on Thursday night at Los Angeles.
Jacki Gemelos had 11 points and nine rebounds and Ashley Corral 10 points for the Trojans (17-11, 9-8 Pac-10).
Jazmine Perkins scored 20 points to lead the Cougars (8-21, 6-11). Ireti Amojo and Sage Romberg had 11 points each.
Gilbreath did most of her damage at the free-throw line, making 13 of 16 attempts.
Washington State led 58-51 after a Perkins 3-pointer, but USC went on a 15-3 run over the next 5:05. Gilbreath made six free throws during the surge, which culminated with a Gemelos jumper that gave the Trojans a 66-61 lead with 2:39 remaining.
Another Perkins 3-pointer got the Cougars within 66-64, but baskets by Corral and Gilbreath gave USC breathing room down the stretch.
The Trojans won the rebounding battle 41-22 and outscored Washington State 24-16 in the paint.
Montana State 62, Eastern Washington 46: Rachel Semansky finished with game highs of 23 points and 11 rebounds to lead the Bobcats (17-12, 11-4 Big Sky Conference) past the Eagles (12-16, 8-7) at Reese Court.
MSU’s Lyndi Seidensticker (Lewis and Clark High) added 14 points.
The Eagles led by nine points in the first half and reached halftime in a 26-all tie, but EWU shot 7 of 27 from the floor in the second half.
Brianne Ryan scored 10 points and Tatjana Sparavalo had eight rebounds for the Eagles.
Eastern has qualified for the Big Sky Conference tournament and will be seeded between fourth and sixth, depending on Saturday’s results.
Idaho 73, New Mexico State 65: Yinka Olorunnife had a team-high 13 points and 11 rebounds as the Vandals (13-13, 6-8 Western Athletic Conference) shot a season-best 54.3 percent from the field to defeat the Aggies (12-16, 6-8) at Las Cruces, N.M., and clinch the No. 5 seed to the conference tourney.
Rachele Kloke added 12 points and Derisa Taleni scored 11 as the Vandals secured a Wednesday opener in Las Vegas against the No. 8 seed. Olorunnife had her 14th double-double of the season and bumped her career rebound total to 1,022, four shy of the WAC record.
(9) UCLA 60, Washington 42: Atonye Nyingifa scored 14 points, Jasmine Dixon had 13 and the Bruins (25-3, 15-2 Pac-10) beat the Huskies (11-15, 6-11) at Los Angeles.
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