Arizona State center Eric Jacobsen is fouled by USC center Omar Oraby on… (Reed Saxon / Associated…)
USC improved to 9-7 in Pac-12 Conference play and moved to within one game of .500 with a 57-56 victory over Arizona State on Saturday afternoon at the Galen Center.
The Trojans (14-15) built a 17-point lead in the first half and led by as many as 14 points with 7:34 left in the second half before fending off a late Sun Devils rally.
Each team had only three players in double figures and neither team shot well -- Arizona State made 42.9% (24 of 56) of its shots from the field while USC connected on only 39.2% (20 of 51).
Eric Wise, who made two free throws with 19 seconds left for a 57-52 lead, led the Trojans with 12 points, six rebounds and two assists. Byron Wesley, who made four of five shots from the field, had 11 points and J.T. Terrell finished with 10 points and three steals for USC.
Jahii Carson led the Sun Devils (20-10, 9-8) with 23 points, seven rebounds and four assists. Jordan Bachynski had 17 points and Chris Colvin added 10 for Arizona State.
Carson's jumper with 2:07 left cut the Trojans' lead to 55-50 and his assist on a Colvin layup helped cut the deficit to 55-52.
After Wise's free throws with 19 seconds to play, Carson made a layup with nine seconds left and, following a turnover by USC on the inbounds play, he hit a jumper with five seconds left for the final margin. Wise was fouled on the ensuing possession but missed the front end of a bonus free-throw situation, but Carson missed a desperation 35-footer at the buzzer.
The Trojans built a 17-point lead in the first half after each team failed to score for more than three minutes. USC's Chass Bryan made a three-pointer with 4:11 left in the first half for a 29-9 lead, and the Trojans took a 31-20 lead into halftime.
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