Tigers Fall to Gamecocks, 81-59


by - Correspondent -
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CLEMSON - The most recent edition of the Clemson-South Carolina basketball rivalry again had a decidedly Gamecock flavor.


After snapping a six-game losing streak to the Tigers a year ago in Columbia, USC rolled into Littlejohn Coliseum Saturday night and waxed Clemson, 81-59. The win was South Carolina's first in Littlejohn since 1994, and just its second since 1972.


The Gamecocks (6-3) won because they did the things Clemson could not do - shoot and rebound. Clemson (6-3) shot just 36 percent from the field (22-of-61), including an abysmal 3-of-23 (13 percent) from the 3-point line.


Clemson's guard trio of Ed Scott, Tony Stockman and Chey Christie were a combined 0-for-14 from 3-point land.


In previous games, however, Clemson overcame its poor long-distance shooting by outrebounding its opponents and thriving on second shot opportunities. But USC put the clamps on the Tigers' inside game, controlling the boards 46-37, including 13-11 on the offensive end.


"Size, in the end, was probably the difference," Clemson head coach Larry Shyatt said. "We looked like the weaker team at times. (USC) played brilliantly...they executed well and are an experienced and physical ballclub."


The Gamecocks also hit Clemson with a balanced scoring attack, placing four players in double figures. The talented backcourt tandem of Aaron Lucas and Jamel Bradley led the onslaught with 20 and 18 points, respectively, countering the bruising inside play of Tony Kitchings (nine points), Rolando Howell (13) and Marius Petravicius (12) with a combined 8-of-16 effort from behind the 3-point line.


The inside-outside combination helped the Gamecocks build a 51-30 halftime lead, and Clemson never got closer than 14 points the rest of the way.


"I was especially pleased with our ball movement and our interior defense," said USC head coach Dave Odom. "They made a few adjustments and got a few easy dunks in the second half, but I was very happy with the way we passed the ball and played defense."


South Carolina could do little wrong in the first half.


Where Clemson shot a dismal 0-for-9 from the 3-point line, USC was 7-for-16. The Gamecocks held the rebounding advantage, 21-15, and had 11 assists to Clemson's three.


Lucas hit four of USC's 3-pointers and finished the half with 14 points. His trey at 13:02 another by Bradley at 10:02 were the bookends of an 14-0 run that turned a 16-12 Gamecocks' lead into a 30-12 advantage.


Later, Lucas sparked a quick 8-0 run with back-to-back 3-pointers that gave the Gamecocks their largest lead of the half, 51-28, with just under a minute left.


Chris Hobbs led Clemson with 14 points, while Jamar McKnight added 13 and Scott 10.


NOTES


- USC's Tony Kitchings took a shot to the head late in the game and had to be helped off the floor. He was taken to a local hospital for observation after the game. There was no word on his condition by press time.


- Henderson finished with a game-high 10 rebounds, while Scott led all players with nine assists.


BOX SCORE

South Carolina (6-3)	 51 	 30 	81
Clemson (6-3)    	 30 	 29 	59

South Carolina
PLAYER  	MIN	FGM-A	FTM-A	OFF	REB	AST	PF	PTS
Eidson  	25	1-5	0-0	0	5	5	5	2
R Howell	24	5-10	3-8	1	6	2	3	13
Petravicius	27	5-5	2-4	3	7	0	3	12
Lucas   	33	7-13	2-4	1	5	4	1	20
Bradley 	36	5-10	4-4	2	6	3	1	18
I Howell	1	0-1	0-0	0	0	0	1	0
Powell  	5	1-1	0-0	1	1	0	2	2
Taylor  	6	1-2	0-2	0	0	0	0	2
Warren  	7	0-1	0-0	0	0	1	0	0
Land    	1	0-1	0-0	1	1	0	0	0
Boynton 	12	1-3	0-0	0	2	2	1	3
Kitchings	23	3-8	3-4	3	9	1	2	9
Totals  	200	29-60	14-26	12	42	18	19	81
 	               .483	.538	 
TEAM REBS: 4
TURNOVERS: 15 (Kitchings 3, Boynton 2, Bradley 2, Lucas 2, Petravicius 2, Eidson, R Howell, Warren)
BLOCKED SHOTS: 2 (R Howell, Bradley)
STEALS: 10 (Bradley 2, Kitchings 2, Lucas 2, R Howell 2, Taylor 2)
3-PT FGS: 9-25, .360 (Eidson 0-3, Lucas 4-9, Bradley 4-7, I Howell 0-1, Taylor 0-1, Warren 0-1, Boynton 1-3)

Clemson
PLAYER  	MIN	FGM-A	FTM-A	OFF	REB	AST	PF	PTS
Hobbs   	29	5-10	4-6	2	6	0	4	14
Clifton  	15	0-5	0-0	0	2	1	0	0
R Henderson	23	2-6	0-0	3	10	0	3	4
Scott   	38	5-9	0-0	0	4	9	2	10
Stockman	27	3-11	0-0	1	2	0	0	6
Nagys   	18	0-0	6-8	1	4	0	5	6
Ford    	8	1-1	0-0	0	2	0	3	2
Babalola	6	0-1	0-0	2	2	0	1	0
Christie	19	1-8	2-4	0	1	0	1	4
Mcknight	13	5-9	0-0	0	1	0	1	13
J Hendrix	3	0-0	0-1	1	1	0	0	0
Douglas  	1	0-1	0-0	0	0	0	0	0
Totals   	200	22-61	12-19	10	35	10	20	59
 	                .361	.632	 
TEAM REBS: 2
TURNOVERS: 14 (Christie 3, Scott 3, Ford 2, Stockman 2, Clifton, Hobbs, J Hendrix, Mcknight)
BLOCKED SHOTS: 3 (Ford 2, Nagys)
STEALS: 6 (Nagys 2, Ford, Hobbs, Mcknight, Stockman)
3-PT FGS: 3-23, .130 (Clifton 0-2, Scott 0-3, Stockman 0-8, Babalola 0-1, Christie 0-3, Mcknight 3-5, Douglas 0-1)

Technicals: None
Attendance: 9,800 

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