Mens Basketball: SMU 72, USC 55 - D1SportsNet


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Mens basketball

SMU 72, USC 55

DALLAS -- Tim Jankovich never wanted to watch the film of SMU's first-round NCAA Tournament loss last March. The only reason he did this week was because the Mustangs were getting ready to play Southern California again.

Jankovich will enjoy watching the rematch.

The Mustangs got some measure of revenge with a 72-55 victory over No. 14 USC on Saturday night after charging ahead with a big run after halftime.

"Yeah it was a big game. Definitely," Jankovich said. "It they were all this fun, I'd want to coach forever. ... Really, really, really proud of our guys. I thought it was just an incredible effort."

Shake Milton scored 22 points and Ben Emelogu had 11 of his 16 points in the go-ahead run for the Mustangs (7-2), who stretched their home winning streak to 28 in a row. Jimmy Whitt had 14 points and Jarrey Foster 13.

It was the third meeting in 13 months between the teams. The Trojans (4-2) won both games last year, including a home game in November 2016 and then again in the first round of the NCAA Tournament last March to end SMU's 30-win season.

"It definitely meant a lot," Milton said of the win over the Trojans. "We knew they were coming into Moody, and we weren't going to lose this game no matter what."

Chimezie Metu had 13 points to lead USC, which had won its last seven non-conference road games.

The Mustangs are 31-0 at home under Jankovich, including three games when he filled in for Larry Brown when he was still an associate head coach.

SMU was down 37-33 before Emelogu hit a 3-pointer that ignited a 23-5 run. The Mustangs went ahead to stay after Milton's two free throws with 15:31 left made it 38-37. Emelogu had three 3s and a dunk in that stretch that pushed them ahead 56-42.

Things were going so well for TCU during that nearly 10-minute streak that with the students counting down the shot clock at one point, Milton slung a shot toward the rim right before the buzzer sounded. The ball went in for a 3-pointer that made it 50-40.

"I knew it was going in," Foster said.

"I have confidence in every shot that I'm taking. We work on stuff like that, awkward shots, in the mornings," Milton said. "I didn't think anything of it, just get back on defense. I think every time I shoot it's going in."