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Watkins scores 26 points to lead No. 7 USC to win over Arizona State

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TEMPE, Ariz. (AP) — JuJu Watkins scored 26 points, Rayah Marshall added 15 points and 15 rebounds, and No. 7 Southern California ended its regular season with a 70-55 victory over Arizona State on Saturday.

USC (23-5, 13-5 Pac-12) has won nine of its last 10 games. Watkins, a freshman sensation averaging nearly 28 points, shot 10 of 22 from the field, grabbed 12 rebounds and had three assists.

The Trojans were coming off a difficult, 95-93 double-overtime win over Arizona on Thursday. There wasn't as much drama on Saturday — USC never trailed.

Watkins scored 11 points on 4-of-6 shooting to push USC ahead 18-12 after one quarter and the Trojans pushed their advantage to 39-26 by halftime. The 6-foot-2 guard was back at it in the third quarter, hitting a 15-foot jumper, getting a steal and layup, drawing a charge and then making another bucket — all in less than minute.

Marshall added five blocked shots, leading a defense that limited Arizona State to 32.8% shooting.

Arizona State (11-19, 3-15) has lost five straight. Jalyn Brown led the Sun Devils with 17 points and Trayanna Crisp added 16.


USC: The Trojans finished their regular season with a very good weekend, beating Arizona and Arizona State, and the way they won those two games was encouraging. Watkins fouled out late in regulation Thursday, with the supporting cast pushing to the win. Against Arizona State, Watkins was very efficient in the first half, proving once again that she doesn't necessarily have to be a superhero in every single game.

Arizona State: The Sun Devils are still in rebuilding mode under second-year coach Natasha Adair. Arizona State had some good offensive possessions on Saturday, but couldn't make enough shots to pull an upset.


The Pac-12 tournament begins in Las Vegas on Wednesday.


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