While the Winthrop win was decent, the Gamecocks scored an even bigger win tonight, an 85-70 over Gardner-Webb. Gardner-Webb recently took highly ranked Oklahoma down to the wire in Norman, and many thought they stood a good chance of upsetting the Gamecocks. It didn't happen, though. Gardner-Webb held a lead throughout the early part of the first half, but the Gamecocks built a double-digit lead by halftime that they would not relinquish in the second half. Devan Downey led the way with 25 points, most of which came during a hot streak in the second half. Zam Fredrick and Mike Holmes also chipped in double-digit scoring, while Austin Steed produced 11 rebounds.
While Gardner-Webb was likely the toughest team the Gamecocks have faced so far, we should be aware that this is a team we matched up well with. On defense, the Bulldogs like to play zone and prefer to give their opponents outside shots rather than letting them move the ball around the basket. This approach played to our strengths, so all we had to do was hope we didn't have an off night shooting the ball, and we didn't.
Our next opponent is at College of Charleston. The Cougars, who are 4-1 so far and will be looking to please the locals with an upset of USC, will be another stiff test for us.