Trojans keep fast start going

USC's Bennie Boatwright, left, and New Mexico's Elijah Brown vie for a loose ball on Saturday night.

USC’s Bennie Boatwright, left, and New Mexico’s Elijah Brown vie for a loose ball on Saturday night.

(Mark J. Terrill / Associated Press)

Jordan McLaughlin scored 19 points, fellow guard Elijah Stewart had 18 and USC defeated New Mexico, 90-82, Saturday night at the Galen Center for its first 3-0 start since 2000-01.

Bennie Boatwright scored 15 points and Julian Jacobs had 14 for the Trojans, who won their first two games by double digits.

Samford transfer Tim Williams led the Lobos (3-1) with 25 points and 15 rebounds. Butler transfer Elijah Brown scored 18 points and Obij Aget, their 7-foot-1 center from South Sudan, had 11 points and 11 rebounds.


New Mexico trailed by 20 points before rallying with a 30-15 run to close to within 81-76 with under two minutes remaining. The Lobos hit five three-pointers, including three by Cullen Neal, and Williams scored 11 points during the surge.

The Trojans made 12 free throws down the stretch while the Lobos got consecutive three-pointers from Brown and Anthony Mathis that left them trailing, 87-82. Katin Reinhardt came up with a big block of Brown’s three-point attempt and the Lobos were called for traveling to end the threat.

The Trojans stretched a 17-point halftime lead to 54-33 early in the second half with six straight points. McLaughlin and Reinhardt hit back-to-back three-pointers that made it 66-46.

Brown made three consecutive three-pointers midway through the half, but the Lobos still trailed 66-49. They shot 39% from the field for the game.

USC made a season-high 12 three-pointers, with Stewart and Boatwright hitting four each.

The score was tied, 12-12, in the opening minutes before the Trojans launched a 20-8 run that produced their first double-digit lead, 32-20. Five players scored during the run, including Stewart with two three-pointers and McLaughlin with five points.