clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Gamecocks turn in lackluster effort against Missouri, fall 79-68

New, comment

South Carolina dropped its SEC home opener to the Tigers in a disappointing showing.

Jeff Blake-USA TODAY Sports

The South Carolina Gamecocks lost their first two season-opening SEC games since 2015 and the Missouri Tigers picked up their first SEC road victory in nearly four years, handing South Carolina a 79-68 defeat on Wednesday.

To be frank, there wasn’t much in this game the Gamecocks did well. The incessant foul calls were enough of a threat to a fan’s enjoyment, but the play on the court was even harder to stomach. If you’re looking for positives, South Carolina went 19-of-26 from the free-throw line and outrebounded Missouri, a good rebounding team in their own right, 32-31. But that’s about where it ends.

The Tigers (11-3, 1-0 SEC) were scorching behind the arc, draining 13 of their 24 3-pointers. In contrast, the Gamecocks (9-5, 0-2) were an abysmal 28% from that distance: Frank Booker, who made a career-high six 3s in the previous game, missed all three of his attempts, and two of South Carolina’s five 3s were courtesy of big man Felipe Haase. Overall, Missouri shot 47% from the floor, while the Gamecocks turned in another sub-40 percent performance (38%). South Carolina often appears intent on living and dying by the 3, but unfortunately, it’s been more on the dying end of the spectrum. Coach Frank Martin’s preseason comment that this team was his best collection of shooters is, uh, not aging well.

With starting point guard Hassani Gravett still out and nursing an ankle sprain, the Gamecocks’ backcourt struggles were thrown in sharper relief. Gravett’s play has been streaky at best and the guard spots are a major weakness for this team regardless, but it goes without saying that injury and depth issues on top of that are not a key to success. Hopefully Gravett can return to the lineup sooner rather than later.

Chris Silva led the Gamecocks with 18 points, and Wesley Myers was the only other Gamecock to join him in double figures (10).

Up next: South Carolina concludes a two-game homestand against Vanderbilt on Saturday.