After dropping a decision to UConn just days prior, the South Carolina Gamecocks were able to take out their frustrations on an overmatched Vanderbilt team, coming away with an 82-51 blowout victory at Colonial Life Arena.
The Gamecocks practically controlled the game from the opening tipoff as they forced the Commodores into nine first-quarter turnovers. They opened up a 23-6 lead after ten minutes to take Vandy out of the game early by getting solid contributions from all five of their starters. The Commodores pulled to within 10 (27-17) after a 11-4 run to start the second, but Carolina would assert itself once more and take a 20-point lead into the locker room. Vandy was held to just twelve field goals tonight - six in each half - and a 23% field goal percentage (19.4% in the second half) as the Gamecocks cruised to an easy win behind a 48% shooting night and an incredible 50-10 advantage in the paint. They played nearly mistake-free basketball the entire evening (just five turnovers) while frustrating the ‘Dores into 20 miscues.
I mentioned that the Gamecocks got solid contributions from their starters, but in reality it was a true team effort as four players hit double figures and all but four of the eleven players that saw the court scored at least seven points. Alaina Coates scored 15, but she was tied for the game high with Kaela Davis. Davis had a brutal outing against the Huskies a few nights ago (1-10 FG, three points, five turnovers) but shook it off to go 6-14 from the floor while turning the ball over zero times. Mikiah Herbert Harrigan was a spark off the bench, scoring 12 points and putting together a perfect 5-5 shooting night.
The Gamecocks have three games remaining on their regular season schedule before the SEC Tournament: at Mizzou on Sunday, at Texas A&M next Thursday, and Senior Day against Kentucky on the 26th to wrap up the slate. Sunday’s tipoff against the Tigers is set for 3pm ET on ESPN2.