Johnny Dee led the Toreros with 13 points
Feb. 21, 2013
PORTLAND, Ore. - The University of San Diego men's basketball team (13-15, 6-7) fell to the University of Portland (11-18, 4-10) 70-67 Thursday evening on the road.
The Toreros, who knocked off the Pilots 61-50 at home on January 3, were able to jump out to an early 7-1 lead. With nine Toreros scoring within the game's first 12 minutes, USD was able to hold a slight advantage for the majority of the first half. However, the Pilots were able to put together an 8-0 run to close the first half to give Portland a 31-27 lead going into the locker room.
In a second half full of momentum swings, both teams shot over 50 percent from the field. After Portland scored the opening bucket in the second half, the Toreros put together a 9-2 run to give them a 36-35 lead with a 17:21 remaining.
The Pilots, who outrebounded the Toreros 38-25, quickly took the lead back and held on to it till the 3:25 mark when USD went up 57-56 on a pair of Simi Fajemisin free throws. However, the Pilots would go on an 8-2 run over the next 2:29 to open up a 64-59 lead with just 56 seconds remaining.
The Toreros cut the lead to 66-64 on a Ken Rancifer jumper with eight seconds remaining, but the Pilots went 4-4 from the free throw line down the stretch to seal the 70-67 victory.
The Pilots, who had four players score double-digit points, were led by Kevin Bailey's 18 points. Ryan Nicholas and Derrick Rodgers tallied 15 points each and Thomas Van der Mars collected a double-double with 10 points and 10 rebounds.
The Toreros continue their trip through the Pacific Northwest when they visit No. 3 Gonzaga (26-2, 13-0) Saturday at 4:00 p.m. The Toreros nearly upset the Zags at home February 2, but fell just short 65-63. The game will be televised on Time Warner SportsNet and Andy Masur will have the call on the Mighty 1090.