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Gamecocks fall in first round of SEC Tournament to Ole Miss 67-61

It was fun while it lasted

NCAA Basketball: SEC Conference Tournament First Round - South Carolina vs Ole Miss Steve Roberts-USA TODAY Sports

South Carolina’s season comes to an end as they lose in the first round of the SEC Tournament to Ole Miss 67-61. This concludes head coach Lamont Paris’ first year campaign, finishing with an overall record of 11-21.

Freshman guard Amaree Abram had a coming out party against the Gamecocks tonight. Abram dropped a team high of 20 points, his highest scoring mark since November, on 7-11 shooting from the field. Abram was also able to connect on five of his eight three-point attempts. To go along with that, Abram knocked down a key free throw to sink the Gamecocks in the final seconds of the game. I think it’s safe to say the Rebels have got a good one in Abram.

Jaemyn Brakefield also showed up big time for the Rebels. Brakefield was everywhere on the court, putting up a statline of 16 points, 7 rebounds, and 2 assists. Brakefield was also great on defense, being a pest to every Gamecock and recording a steal. While the Gamecocks were able to hold Matthew Murrell to only 2-10 shooting, Brakefield and Abram stepped up when it mattered most.

GG Jackson showed a great effort tonight in the loss. Jackson posted a game high of 24 points, while also grabbing 5 rebounds. Jackson’s 24 point performance is his highest since his 30 point game against Auburn in January. Now we are left with the question of what GG Jackson will decide to do in the offseason: declare for the draft, or elect to stay another year in college? We shall see.

Meechie Johnson Jr. was also everywhere on the court tonight for the Gamecocks. Contrary to his 4-13 shooting night, Johnson posted 3 rebounds, 5 assists, and 2 steals to go along with 13 points. It will be exciting to see Johnson back in Gamecock gear next season, as he has a lot of room for improvement.

Overall, it wasn’t the best season, but I think I speak for all Gamecock fans when I say that it can only go up from here. Coach Paris will be better, more recruits will come in, and there will be an actual team, not just a bunch of players thrown together from the transfer portal. It will for sure be interesting to see where we go from here.

So long, basketball season. Go Gamecocks.