Less than 24 hours after suffering an embarrassing loss to Division II Chaminade, the Longhorns played better. But it still wasn’t good enough.
In its second game at the Maui Invitational, Texas fell to Southern California, 59-53, in overtime Tuesday — its second straight defeat. The Longhorns and Trojans were tied 26-26 at halftime and knotted up 45-45 in the final minutes of regulation.
Julien Lewis, who led all scorers with 17 points, knocked down a jumper to put Texas up at 47-45 before Javan Felix’s shot was blocked and USC’s J.T. Terrell’s dunk in transition with 18 seconds left in the second half tied the game once again at 47, forcing overtime.
The Trojans scored the first four points in the extra period before a pair of free throws from Ioannis Papapetrou and another bucket from Lewis had the game tied 51-51.
But Dewayne Dedmon’s three-point play on the ensuing possession provided USC with all the points it would need. The Trojans hit six of seven free throw attempts down the stretch to seal the Longhorns’ fate.
“We didn’t finish on the defensive end,” head coach Rick Barnes said. “We gave up two, three, four offensive rebounds back-to-back. Then we gave up. Gave up a slip to the basket, and gave up dribble penetration once that turned into a three-point play, which was a big play in the game.”
Texas was sluggish offensively to begin the game, going nearly six and a half minutes before knocking down its first field goal. The Longhorns turned a 10-3 deficit into a 23-18 lead in less than eight minutes but never led by more than three points after the first half.
Lewis scored 11 of Texas’ 21 second-half points but missed a potentially game-winning three-pointer with five seconds left in regulation. His only points in overtime tied the game but the Trojans outscored the Longhorns 8-2 in the final minute and a half.
The Longhorns will face Mississippi State in the tournament’s seventh-place game at 1:30 p.m. Wednesday.