Howard, offensive outburst power Golden Eagles past USC

Senior guard Markus Howard scored 51 points against the USC Trojans Nov. 29 in the Orlando Invitational. (Photo courtesy of Marquette Athletics)

Senior guard Markus Howard scored 51 points against the USC Trojans Nov. 29 in the Orlando Invitational. (Photo courtesy of Marquette Athletics)

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For the second consecutive day, a dominant performance from senior guard Markus Howard fueled Marquette’s offense in the Orlando Invitational, this time helping Marquette roll to a 101-79 win over the USC Trojans Friday afternoon.

One day after dropping 40 points against Davidson College, Markus Howard scored 51 points against USC. He shot 14-for-24 from the field, and 14-for-17 from the free throw line, becoming the first player in the history of the BIG EAST conference to have at least 40 points in consecutive games.

It was two points shy of his career high and the program record for points in a game. The performance broke the record for points in an Orlando Invitational game, which he set with Thursday’s 40-point performance.

Howard wasn’t alone on the offensive end, though, as every player on Marquette’s roster scored. Greg Elliott came off the bench to shot four-for four and have 11 points plus four rebounds. Sacar Anim and Koby McEwen had seven points each as well.

The Golden Eagles scored a season-high 57 points in the first half, as they shot 10-for-15 from the 3-point line and shot 56% from the floor. At the same time, four Marquette blocks and seven forced turnovers held USC to 36 first-half points.

Coming out of the second half, USC switched to a zone defense to slow down Marquette’s offense, and it caused problems at times, but ultimately Howard and the Golden Eagles were too much for the Trojans.

Despite USC’s size advantage and foul trouble for all three Marquette post players, Marquette won the rebound battle 41-32. Every player to earn minutes collected multiple rebounds except first-year guard Symir Torrence.

Marquette also won the turnover battle, with the Trojans turning the ball over 17 times compared to the Golden Eagles’ 14. Marquette scored 12 points off those 17 USC turnovers.

The Golden Eagles are now 5-1 and move on to the Orlando Invitational title game to play the No. 5 Maryland Terrapins Sunday at noon.

 

This story was written by Matt Yeazel. He can be reached at matthew.yeazel@marquette.edu or on Twitter @MJYeazel.

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