After a nice bounce back victory against Vanderbilt at home, the South Carolina Gamecocks hit the road to Tuscaloosa with a little more pep in their step. Unfortunately, the Alabama Crimson Tide made sure the Gamecocks got their road trip off on the wrong foot, rolling past South Carolina 76-62.
Although the Tide led by a modest 40-33 margin at halftime, Alabama never trailed and the Gamecocks never posed a serious threat, at times facing deficits as large as 20 points. Despite South Carolina holding the SEC’s leading scorer, Collin Sexton, to a season-low five points, Bama’s bench responded with a 35-point outburst to compensate. John Petty led the Tide with 15 points, while Donta Hall added 13 and Avery Johnson Jr. 10. Overall, Alabama shot a sizzling 59% from the floor to the Gamecocks’ paltry 36%.
Wes Myers stepped up to provide another productive game for South Carolina, scoring 15 points and making two of his three 3-point attempts. Maik Kotsar was next with 10 points and five rebounds. Chris Silva, after posting a career-high 27 points against Vanderbilt, had a quiet 9-point, four-rebound performance and fouled out, which is exactly the kind of thing that can’t happen if South Carolina wants to be competitive.
The Gamecocks’ backcourt depth got a boost with the return of Hassani Gravett from his ankle sprain, and he came off the bench to post seven points and an assist. Frank Booker also came off the bench with a six-point effort, still trying to rediscover the 3-point shooting touch that had helped anchor the Gamecocks earlier in the season.
Frankly, there’s not a whole lot to say about this one; South Carolina was just flat out whipped by a deeper and more athletic team. The Tide has been a bad matchup for the Gamecocks for a few seasons now, and the losing streak in Tuscaloosa — dating back to 2009 — unfortunately continues.
Up next: The Gamecocks travel to Georgia on Saturday at 1 p.m.