USC To Face Drexel In Charleston Classic Second Round

    Nikola Jovanovic just missed on a double-double with 11 points and nine rebounds vs. Akron.
    Nov. 20, 2014

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    The USC Trojans (1-2) will face the Drexel Dragons (0-3) in a second-round game of the Charleston Classic at TD Arena in Charleston, S.C. on Nov. 21 at 9:00 a.m. (PT). The winner of this game will face the winner of the Penn State/Cornell game on Nov. 23 at 12:30 a.m. (PT), while the other two teams will square off at 10:30 a.m. (PT) on the same day.

    TROJANS FACE DREXEL IN SECOND ROUND OF CHARLESTON CLASSIC -- USC's second-round opponent at the Charleston Classic will be Drexel of the Colonial Athletic Association. Drexel was 16-14 last season and returns eight lettermen from that squad. Drexel is 0-3 this season with losses to Colorado (65-48), Saint Joseph's (52-49) and Miami (66-46). The Dragons are led in scoring by Damion Lee at 14.7 points per game. USC and Drexel have met only one time, with the Trojans winning 82-53 on December 23, 1980.

    COLD-SHOOTING TROJANS FALL TO AKRON -- The cold-shooting Trojans fell behind Akron early and never caught up in a 66-46 loss in a first-round game at the Charleston Classic. USC trailed by 12 at the half and saw the lead swell to 17 before a 10-0 Trojan run cut the lead to 47-40 at the 10-minute mark. USC's Jordan McLaughlin then missed a 3-pointer and Akron's Antino Jackson followed with eight-straight points on two three-pointers and a layup and the lead was back up to 15 and the Zips cruised from there. USC shot 28.3 percent for the game, including just 21.2 percent in the second half. The Trojans were once again plagued by the turnover, as their 16 turnovers led to 25 points by Akron.

    THE 2014-15 USC TROJANS -- The Andy Enfield Era began last year but should really take flight in the 2014-15 season with a young and exciting team which features the 12th-ranked recruiting class and the eligibility of top-notch transfers Katin Reinhardt and Darion Clark. What the Trojans will lack in experience they will make up for in talent, athleticism and exuberance. There are six new impact players which will join forces with the returning group headlined by sophomores Nikola Jovanovic and Julian Jacobs. In fact, 11 of the 14 players on the USC roster will be freshmen or sophomores with just three juniors and no seniors.

    ROSTER BREAKDOWN -- There are a total of 14 players on the 2014-15 USC men's basketball roster. The Trojan team by class are: Seniors (0): None; Juniors (3): Chass Bryan (G), Strahinja Gavrilovic (F) and Brendyn Taylor (G); Sophomores (7): Darion Clark (F), Samer Dhillon (F), Kahlil Dukes (G), Julian Jacobs (G), Nikola Jovanovic (F), Devon Pflueger (G) and Katin Reinhardt (G); Freshmen (4): Malik Marquetti (G), Malik Martin (F), Jordan McLaughlin (G) and Elijah Stewart (G).

    MAKING A DEFENSIVE STAND -- USC has held all of its opponents this season to 40 percent shooting or less as Portland State shot 39.1 percent, Tennessee Tech 33.8 percent and Akron 40.0 percent. For the three games, USC has held the opposition to a combined 37.5 shooting percentage (72-for-192).

    SUDDEN IMPACT -- Freshman Jordan McLaughlin leads USC with an average of 14.0 points in the first three games. He also leads USC in free throws attempted (19), assists (15), steals (5) and it tied in blocks (3). USC's freshman class of McLaughlin, Malik Martin, Elijah Stewart and Malik Marquetti has scored 42.4 percent of the Trojans' points this season (78 of 184).

    YOUTH WILL BE SERVED -- The Trojans started freshmen guard Jordan McLaughlin and forward Malik Martin in the opener, the first freshmen in the USC opening night lineup since Byron Wesley started the 2011-12 season opener. They also became the first pair of USC freshmen to start since Bryce Jones and Maurice Jones got the nod in the opener of the 2010-11 season. USC's freshmen scored 21 of the Trojans first 25 points and 50 percent of the team's points in the opener (34 of 68).

    BETTER BE READY TO ROLL... -- Starting with the game against Portland State on Nov. 15, the USC men's basketball team began a stretch of six games in 11 days (1-2). The longest stretch of days without a game between Nov. 15 and Nov. 25 is two days, with no games on Nov. 18 and 19. USC will travel to South Carolina for the Charleston Classic on the 18th and practice on the 19th.