Colorado rallies past shorthanded USC

J’Vonne Hadley scored 15 points and grabbed nine rebounds, and Colorado rallied from down as many as 16 points in the first half to remain perfect at home this season with a 68-58 win over depleted Southern California on Saturday in Boulder, Colo.

The Buffaloes (12-5, 3-3 Pac-12 Conference) opened the second half on a 12-2 run, slashing a 13-point deficit at intermission to three points by the first intermission. Colorado continued to chip away until taking the lead midway through the second half and maintaining control down the stretch.

USC (8-9, 2-4) played without big man Joshua Morgan, sidelined for a second consecutive game due to an upper respiratory infection, and guards Boogie Ellis and Isaiah Collier.

Ellis, the Trojans’ leading scorer for the season, sat due to a hamstring injury. Collier, USC’s second-leading scorer, was out with a hand injury sustained in Wednesday’s loss to Washington State.

The backcourt absences opened the door for Bronny James to make his first collegiate career start. The son of all-time NBA leading scorer LeBron James was on a minute restriction since his Dec. 10 debut coming off of cardiac arrest suffered in July.

James played a career-high 25 minutes on Saturday, but went scoreless on 0-of-7 shooting from the floor.

Oziyah Sellers helped the undermanned Trojans build their first-half lead with 16 points off the bench before intermission. Sellers posted a

Colorado held USC to 21 points on 7-of-29 shooting following halftime. The Trojans went 22-of-61 from the floor for the game.

Kobe Johnson, DJ Rodman and Vincent Iwuchukwu each scored 10 points.

Tristan da Silva and Eddie Lampkin Jr. both scored 12 points for Colorado, which improved to 10-0 at home on the season. Lampkin grabbed seven rebounds and da Silva matched teammate KJ Simpson and USC’s Johnson with the game high of four assists.

The win snapped a three-game skid for Colorado.