Reeling USC will try to end losing streak

first_imgUSC looks to snap its six-game losing streak tonight at Dedeaux Field when it hosts UC Santa Barbara in non-conference action at 7 p.m.The Trojans (15-20, 2-10) suffered their second straight series sweep last weekend — this time at the hands of   Pac-10 leader Arizona State. After taking a 4-1 lead in the first inning of Sunday’s series finale, USC allowed 11 unanswered runs to the Sun Devils (31-3, 9-3) and dropped its 10th game in its last 13 contests by a score of 14-6.Slick fielding · Sophomore infielder Ricky Oropesa leads the Trojans in a number of statistical categories, including home runs and RBI. Oropesa has also been solid for the USC in the field, holding a .997 fielding percentage on 307 chances. – Katelynn Whitaker | Daily Trojan USC coach Chad Kreuter has a few options that he can turn to for starters tonight. Sophomore right-hander Chad Smith lasted only one and one-third innings in Sunday’s outing, allowing five runs on five hits with two walks.Junior righty Logan Odom pitched two innings of relief Sunday, but he might be ready to start tonight as well. Odom (0-0, 6.14 ERA) last started against Cal State Bakersfield on April 7 where he gave up two runs in two innings.Kreuter could also go with senior Kevin Couture — who did not start over the weekend but pitched in relief Sunday — or senior Shuhei Fujiya, who failed to record an out in his only start of the season March 30 against Loyola Marymount.The Gauchos (16-14, 3-3) come into tonight’s contest having dropped their weekend series to Cal State Fullerton after losing the rubber game Sunday 6-1.UCSB will likely start junior Greg Davis. In his last start against Loyola Marymount, Davis (1-0, 2.63 ERA) lasted three innings without giving up a hit. He struck out three.UCSB is batting .291 on the season with a staff ERA of 5.02, compared to USC’s team average of .284 and 4.75 ERA.Sophomore infielder Ricky Oropesa continues to pace the way for the Trojans’ offense, leading the team in batting average (.321), hits (45), doubles (12), home runs (11) and RBI (34). He is also second on the team with 29 runs scored.On the other side, the Gauchos have a few top hitters USC pitchers need to keep in check. Five of their starters have a batting average of .297 or better.Infielder Matt Valaika leads the Gauchos with a .327 batting average, 24 runs scored and 25 RBI, to go along with his four home runs. Infielder Trevor Whyte is tied for second on the team with 21 RBI. He also sports a .309 batting average. Infielder Gunnar Terhune has a .304 average, 23 runs scored, 21 RBI and six stolen bases.USC is hoping to notch a much-needed win tonight before it travels to Eugene, Ore., to take on the Ducks this weekend. The Trojans have yet to win a Pac-10 series this season.last_img read more

Syracuse loses to Duke in ACC tournament quarterfinals

first_img Facebook Twitter Google+ No. 21 Syracuse (21-10, 11-5 Atlantic Coast) fell, 68-46, to No. 13 Duke (26-4, 13-3) Friday night in the ACC Tournament quarterfinals at the HTC Center in Conway, South Carolina. Alongside just nine points from Alexis Peterson and 13 from Brittney Sykes, an 18-point performance from Gabby Cooper wasn’t enough. The 46 points were a season low.The first half was tightly contested, and the Orange entered halftime down just 29-26 after Duke guard Kyra Lambert hit a buzzer-beating 3-pointer to send the Blue Devils into the locker room with the lead. Cooper paced the Orange with 12 first-half points, but Peterson and Sykes shot just 4-of-17 from the field, as the conference’s two leading scorers entered the locker room with 10 combined points.For the Blue Devils, Oderah Chidom and Lexie Brown combined for 15 first-half points on 6-of-9 shooting, and Duke’s three-two and two-three zone pressured SU into a number of unwanted shots for a majority of the half.“The three-two zone is gonna give you shots in the corner, but you gotta knock them down,” Hillsman said. “We got looks, but we gotta make shots.”The second half was even worse for the Orange from the field, shooting just 21.6 percent on 37 shots. Sykes and Peterson added just 12 combined points to their first half tally, and Cooper cooled off from 3, adding six points in the final half.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textPeterson finished the game with a shooting percentage just above 19 percent. Hillsman attributed it to Duke’s presence at the top of the key on pick-and-roll plays, which didn’t allow Peterson to drive to the hoop. He said the Blue Devils were also running a “good scheme” on the Orange’s ball actions.“It’s not the result you want,” Hillsman said. “We shot 23 percent, and the key for us is making shots.”Brown finished with a game-high 22 points for the Blue Devils, followed by  Kendall Cooper and Chidom with 12 and 11, respectively. The Blue Devils had 18 turnovers on the night, and since SU was unable to convert at the hoop, the Orange failed to initiate its press for most of the game.Isabella Slim started and played 33 minutes for SU, but failed to score a single point all game.The lone bright spot for SU came in the form of Cooper, whose 18 points sat one-shy of her career-best point total. Hillsman said that Cooper’s future is “very bright”, but in a game where Peterson and Sykes failed to carry their weight in the scoring column, even one of Cooper’s best wasn’t enough for SU.“Give Duke a lot of credit, they played solid and they stayed consistent to their game plan,” Hillsman said. “We just got unraveled.” Comments Published on March 4, 2017 at 1:07 am Contact Matt: mjfel100@syr.edulast_img read more