LOS ANGELES — Mikayla Pivec had to watch the last nine minutes of the first half on the bench after picking up her second foul.
Without Pivec on the floor, No. 10 Oregon State was unable to gain much separation from USC and the Beavers led just 34-29 at the half.
Pivec made sure the game would not stay that way as the Beavers’ junior guard scored 14 of her 21 points in the third period to help Oregon State break the game open.
The Beavers didn’t let a big lead slip away this time as Oregon State completed a Pac-12 women’s basketball road sweep of the Los Angeles schools with a 76-52 victory over USC at the Galen Center on Sunday afternoon.
Oregon State (14-2, 4-0) returns home to host the Arizona schools this coming weekend, beginning with a 7 p.m. tip with Arizona (13-3, 3-2) on Friday.
Minyon Moore scored 21 points for USC (10-6, 0-5), which shot just 16 for 64 from the floor (25 percent).
Pivec was 6 for 10 from the field and 8 for 8 from the free-throw line overall and played all 20 minutes in the second half. She chipped in seven rebounds and two assists.
“She’s the most versatile, the most valuable player that not enough people are talking about in our sport in the country,” coach Scott Rueck said.
“What she does for our team, any coach would just, you pray to have players that give you what she gives you day in and day out. And one of the biggest things is the confidence and the strength that she provides for this team.”
Pivec wasn’t the only Beaver to come up big. Junior Maddie Washington had a career-high 19 points and grabbed seven rebounds a day after her 21st birthday.
Washington was 8 for 10 from the field and 3 for 4 from the foul line.
“It felt like she was scoring every other second,” Rueck said. “I’m so proud of her just for embracing this new role the way that she has and seeing herself within our system.
“Just to be a go-to scorer, which we know she can, we see it every day in practice, it’s neat to see her see herself in that way and demand the ball like she did today.”
Washington, who admitted she was a little under the weather, said she is finally getting comfortable playing the five role.
“Scott always says you have to be what this team needs and if my team needs me to get down there, grab a few rebounds and put the ball in the hoop then I’ll do that,” Washington said.
Aleah Goodman also provided a big lift early in the game to get the Beavers going offensively. The sophomore guard hit three 3-pointers in the first quarter and scored 14 of her 17 points in the opening 20 minutes.
“She’s one of the best shooters in the country,” Rueck said. “We needed that spark. She got to sit and watch for five minutes and clearly was ready to play. They gave her a little space and that’s something that Aleah can do. She can knock 3s down from anywhere and she was a real spark for us in that first quarter.”
Goodman finished 6 for 10 from the field, including 5 for 7 from 3.
“My teammates did a great job kind of attacking and getting them to suck in and open it up for me and I just knew one of my roles on the team is to hit shots and so I had to come in and do that,” Goodman said.
The Beavers led 34-29 at the half before a USC 3-pointer to start the third made it a two-point game.
But the Beavers embarked on a 12-2 run that gave them their largest lead at 46-34 with 4:17 left in the period. Pivec had an old-fashion three-point play and two free throws, Goodman her fifth 3 and Washington added two buckets in the run.
The run extended to 24-4 as Pivec scored nine more to give her 14 in the third.
OSU was 7 for 12 from the floor and 8 for 9 from the foul line after not attempting a free throw in the first half.
USC was dismal 3 for 17 and did not attempt a free throws after going 11 for 12 in the first half.
The Beavers never let the Trojans sniff a comeback in the fourth quarter. Last year, USC rallied from 18 down in the third for a win.
The Beavers turned the ball over five times in the first five minutes and trailed 8-7. But Goodman jump-started the offense hitting three 3s as the Beavers used a 12-3 run to take a 19-11 lead before settling for a 19-13 edge at the quarter break.
OSU was 5 for 5 from 3 in the first quarter. USC was just 5 for 15 in the first and 0 for 4 from 3.
The Beavers battled some early foul trouble as Katie McWilliams had two in the first quarter and Pivec picked up her second less than a minute into the second. Washington was whistled for her second midway through the second quarter.
Still, despite the foul trouble and 11 turnovers, the Beavers took a lead into the half.
The Beavers were 14 for 28 from the floor, 6 for 13 from 3, while USC was just 9 for 26 from the floor, 0 for 7 from 3.
However, The Trojans hit 11 of 12 free throws and had nine offensive rebounds that led to 10 second-chance points. USC also turned those 11 OSU turnovers into eight points.