For anyone who was in desperate need of a palate cleanser after the football team’s latest disaster, South Carolina’s men’s basketball team was happy to provide a distraction with a dominant 66-32 showing over the Wyoming Cowboys on Sunday afternoon.
The Gamecocks held the Cowboys to 23% shooting from the field and the lowest scoring output in the Frank Martin era, made even more impressive in this context:
How historic was @GamecockMBB defensive performance today?— Mike Uva (@Mike_Uva) November 10, 2019
Wyoming's 32 pts are the fewest an opponent has scored against the Gamecocks under @FrankMartin_SC & the fewest an opponent has scored since Jan. 9, 1971 when USC held Maryland to 31 pts... & that was pre-shot clock era
Four South Carolina players hit double figures, with A.J. Lawson and Jermaine Couisnard each posting 12 points while Jair Bolden had 11 and Alanzo Frink put up 10. Overall, the Gamecocks shot 42% from the field and had an improved showing from 3 (33%), although they had another middling performance at the free-throw line (58%).
But hey, how much does that matter when you’re absolutely smothering your opponent? The Gamecocks out-rebounded the Cowboys 41-21 and committed just 11 turnovers while harassing Wyoming into 15. USC went on an 18-1 run in the first half, then followed that offense with forcing an 8-minute Wyoming scoring drought in the second.
In any event, this was some cathartic revenge for last year’s game against the Cowboys, which was a maddening, come-from-behind 73-62 loss that aged poorly and dogged the Gamecocks all season.
South Carolina (2-0) hosts Cleveland State (1-1, with a loss to Minnesota) at 7 p.m. on Friday.