Poor-Shooting Bulldogs Edge USC, 63-59
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Kentavious Caldwell-Pope scored 21 points and hit a key late 3-pointer to help Georgia beat USC 63-59 on Saturday in a rare West Coast appearance for the Bulldogs.
Caldwell-Pope, a freshman, hit four 3-pointers, and Gerald Robinson scored 17 points for Georgia (5-5), which snapped a four-game losing skid.
The Bulldogs, one of worst-shooting teams in the nation, shot a season-high 51 percent. They made 9 of 13 3-pointers.
Alexis Moore scored 18 points to lead USC (4-7), while Maurice Jones had 11. Aaron Fuller added 10 points.
Caldwell-Pope made a 3-pointer to put Georgia up 60-56 with 43 seconds left. He later added a pair of free throws.
With eight seconds remaining, Jones missed a potential game-tying 3-pointer. Moore grabbed the offensive rebound but threw the ensuing pass away as the Bulldogs survived.
The game was Georgia’s first in the Pacific Time Zone since 2005 and its fourth-ever in the Los Angeles area.
Fuller was held scoreless in the opening half but sparked the Trojans with seven points during a key stretch as his jumper made it 41-34.
Georgia chipped away at the lead and went ahead for the first time in the second half when Robinson picked up a loose ball and made an uncontested layup for a 53-52 lead with 3:43 remaining.
Fuller’s two free throws gave the Trojans a 54-53 edge. But a putback dunk by Donte Williams put the Bulldogs in front 55-54.
Williams blocked Jones’ shot on the other end, and Marcus Thornton hit a pair of free throws for the 57-54 lead with 1:49 to go.
USC’s Dewayne Dedmon stole the ball and fed Jones for a layup the cut the Bulldogs’ edge to 57-56. Caldwell-Pope answered by hitting a corner 3-pointer to make it 60-56 with 43 seconds left.
The Trojans didn’t go away, as Moore hit a corner 3-pointer, his fourth of the game, to get within 60-59.
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