It has been rare for 24 hours to pass without a ranked team losing in college basketball this season, and No. 11 Arizona kept that trend alive with its 89-78 loss to USC in a Pac-12 matchup Wednesday night.
The Wildcats received 14 points from star guard Mark Lyons, but 12 of those came at the free-throw line, as Lyons was just 1-of-9 from the field.
Solomon Hill led Arizona with 21 points, while Kevin Parrom added 16. But the Wildcats defense was nonexistent at the Galen Center in Los Angeles.
Five Trojans had double-digit scoring nights, with Eric Wise leading all players with 22 points. The senior forward sunk nine of his 12 field goals.
Sophomore guard Byron Wesley also had an impressive night with 18 points. He converted two of his three attempts from beyond the arc.
The Trojans victory is truly shocking, and ESPN Los Angeles’ Arash Markazi reminds all that USC has not exactly been a force in basketball of late:
FINAL: USC 89, No. 11 Arizona 78. This is USC's first win against a ranked team since Feb. 24, 2011.— Arash Markazi (@ArashMarkazi) February 28, 2013
Arizona’s slim hopes at earning a No. 1 seed likely evaporated when the clock expired in this game, and it will need to be impressive in the Pac-12 tournament to have a shot at a No. 2 or a No. 3 seed.
The Wildcats are now 23-5 overall and 11-5 in the Pac-12.
USC is not in contention to reach the NCAA tournament, and even this impressive win will not change that. The Trojans improved to 13-15 on the season and are now 8-7 against conference opponents.
Arizona will stay in L.A. as its next game is a showdown against UCLA, a contest that will have implications on the Pac-12 regular-season title.