Sports

Jovanovic scores 23 points to lead Southern California over California 77-69

  • Southern California's J.T. Terrell, left, gets his shot blocked by California's David Kravish during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game on Wednesday, Jan. 22, 2014, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)

    Southern California's J.T. Terrell, left, gets his shot blocked by California's David Kravish during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game on Wednesday, Jan. 22, 2014, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)  (The Associated Press)

  • California's Justin Cobbs, left, goes up for a basket as Southern California's Pe'Shon Howard watches during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game Wednesday, Jan. 22, 2014, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)

    California's Justin Cobbs, left, goes up for a basket as Southern California's Pe'Shon Howard watches during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game Wednesday, Jan. 22, 2014, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)  (The Associated Press)

  • Southern California's Omar Oraby reacts after making a basket during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game against California on Wednesday, Jan. 22, 2014, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)

    Southern California's Omar Oraby reacts after making a basket during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game against California on Wednesday, Jan. 22, 2014, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)  (The Associated Press)

Nikola Jovanovic scored a career-high 23 points and Southern California led all the way in beating California 77-69 Wednesday night for the Trojans' first Pac-12 victory after an 0-5 start.

Byron Wesley added 14 points and seven rebounds, Julian Jacobs and Pe'Shon Howard had 12 points each, while Howard had 10 assists for the Trojans (10-9, 1-5). They ended their worst start in league play since 2012. Jovanovic made 8 of 10 field goals and all seven of his free throw attempts.

Justin Cobbs scored 22 points and Jordan Mathews added 18 for the Golden Bears (14-5, 5-1). The loss left idle No. 1 Arizona as the league's only undefeated team. The Bears had their six-game overall winning streak snapped and their four-game streak against USC ended.

Cal big men Richard Solomon and David Kravish combined for 19 points. They had been averaging a combined 33.8 points. Solomon had 13 rebounds.

The Trojans had lost a season-high five straight by an average of 22.4 points under first-year coach Andy Enfield. But they came out energized from the opening tip, racing to a 19-8 lead.

Led by Jovanovic, a 6-foot-10 freshman from Serbia, and Omar Oraby, a 7-2 senior from Egypt, the Trojans were able to control the boards, 37-33, while limiting the shots of the 6-10 Solomon and 6-9 Kravish. USC dominated the paint, 44-26. Oraby finished with nine points and seven rebounds.

Solomon fouled out with 1:07 to go after scoring four points on 2-of-2 shooting in the second half.

The Trojans shot 56 percent in the first half. USC stretched its lead to 35-22 — largest of the half — on Howard's 3-pointer.

The Bears got within five points late in the half before USC closed with a 6-2 spurt to lead 41-32 at the break. Cal was held to 32 percent shooting.

Cal got no closer than seven points twice — the first time on Kravish's first basket of the game to open the second half and later on a 3-pointer by Tyrone Wallace with 1:36 left. The Bears were seeking their first 6-0 start in league play since 2003 when they began 7-0.

USC built its largest lead, 64-49, on a basket by Jacobs with 8 ½ minutes to go.