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#5 South Carolina cruises past Georgia into SEC women’s basketball tournament semifinals

Coates sits as Wilson and Gray lead USC into the next round.

NCAA Womens Basketball: NCAA Tournament-Sioux Falls Regional-South Carolina vs Syracuse Steven Branscombe-USA TODAY Sports

The South Carolina Gamecocks advance to the semifinals of the SEC women’s basketball tournament with a dominant 72-48 win over Georgia. Carolina got going early and rode a huge halftime lead into the next round.

With Alaina Coates nursing an ankle injury, Carolina was always going to rely on A’ja Wilson to provide the inside scoring. The SEC player of the year responded with fast start, scoring 12 first half points. Allisha Gray led USC at the break with 13 points, shooting 3-5 from beyond the arc. Mikiah Herbert Harrigan stepped up in the absence of Coates, scoring five points while grabbing six first half rebounds.

With a 42-16 halftime lead, USC was able to rest key players in the second half. Wilson was limited to nine minutes in the second half as Herbert Harrigan was the only Gamecock to play more than 14 minutes in the final two periods.

Wilson led the way for USC with 18 points and seven rebounds in only 21 minutes of action. Gray finished with 17 points on ten shots while Doniyah Cliney was the third and final Gamecock in double-figures with 11. Herbert Harrigan finished five points and a game-high 10 rebounds. Carolina shot 6-14 from three and shot 20-25 at the foul line, outscoring Georgia by 12.

Georgia was unable to match Carolina’s energy early with it being their second game in as many days. The Bulldogs were led by Pachis Roberts with 15 points on 17 shots. Caliya Robinson was the only other player in double figures with 12 points on 14 shots.

South Carolina will play tomorrow at 5 p.m. on ESPNU against the winner of Kentucky and Alabama.