A crazy week of college basketball in the Palmetto State wrapped up Saturday with a full slate of games involving local teams. USC found a way to bounce back from a quadruple overtime loss against Alabama, but Clemson’s season of near misses and heartbreak extended at Duke. Plus there was big story lines to follow out of Furman, Winthrop and College of Charleston and a whole lot more to follow, and we have it all covered for you and more in our latest hoops recap. Let’s dive in.
USC gets key road win in Starkville
Coming off a gruling 4 OT home loss to Alabama, #19 USC needed to get back on track at Mississippi State Saturday night. Sindarius Thornwell made sure that happened. Thornwell scored 28 points in a 78-73 win over the Bulldogs. The senior guard also drew the defensive assignment against MSU’s best player, Quinndary Weatherspoon, and held him to just five points. The Bulldogs made the Gamecocks fight hard to get the win, but Carolina pulled ahead for good late and held on in Starkville. A 9-0 run with just over five minutes to play did the trick. Chris Silva managed to post 15 points before he fouled out. USC is 20-5 and 10-2 in the SEC. They return home Wednesday night for a matchup with Arkansas.
Check out what what Frank Martin had to say after the game here.
Clemson can’t catch a break
Clemson rallied from 14 down against #18 Duke, but in the end it was just another close, gut wrenching loss for the Tigers. The Blue Devils won 64-62 at Cameron Indoor Stadium, handing the Tigers its 6th ACC loss by five points or less. Clemson had a chance to tie or win it on their final possesion, but Dante Grantham wasn’t able to get a clean shot as time expired. Shelton Mitchell had a career high 23 points for the Tigers; Elijah Thomas added 15. Jaron Blossomgame didn’t deliver his normal contribution, finishing with just seven points. The Tigers are 13-11 and 3-9 in the ACC. They have a home game with Wake Forest coming up Tuesday night.
Check out Brad Brownell’s post game interview courtesy of Learfield Sports:
Winthrop bounces back
Coming off an overtime loss to UNC Asheville, Winthrop bounced back with a 77-71 win over Gardner-Webb. Xavier Cooks led the Eagles with 23 points. Keon Johnson, who became Winthrop’s all-time leading scorer this week, added 15. The Eagles are 19-6 and 11-3 in the Big South.
Two straight losses for CofC
The College of Charleston was on the wrong end of a buzzer beater Thursday against Northeastern and the Cougars suffered another setback Saturday with a 89-79 loss at William & Mary. Jarrell Brantley had 20 points and 10 rebounds for the Cougars who are now 19-8 overall, and 10-4 in the CAA.
Eight straight for Furman
Furman’s magical season continued Saturday with a 90-73 home win over Samford. John Davis III had 24 points to led the Paladins; Devin Sibley added 22. Furman is 18-8 and lead the Southern Conference with an 11-2 record.
Wofford runs out of gas
Wofford played in a four overtime thriller Thursday night, but couldn’t keep the magic going Saturday at home against Chattanooga. The Mocs knocked of the Terriers 73-65. Fletcher Magee had 26 points for Wofford; Ryan Sawvell had a double-double with 16 points and 11 rebounds. The Terriers dropped to 13-14 overall and 8-6 in the SoCon.
Citadel no match for VMI
The Citadel couldn’t keep up with the Keydets in a 101-78 road loss. The Bulldogs are 9-18 this season and 2-12 in the SoCon.
Cunningham leads USC Upstate to win
Mike Cunningham had a career high 28 points to lead USC Upstate to a 84-71 win over North Florida Saturday night. The Spartans are 17-11 overall and 7-4 in the Atlantic Sun.
Charleston Southern struggles
Charleston Southern couldn’t stop a hot Liberty squad Saturday in a 76-69 loss. The Bucs are now 4-10 in the Big South and 8-17 overall.
Coastal Carolina tops Georgia Southern
Coastal Carolina moved two games over .500 in the Sun Belt with a 82-70 win over a very good Georgia Southern team. Colton Ray-St Cyr and Jaylen Shaw each scored 16 points for the Chanticleers who are 12-13 and 7-5 in league play.
PC loses (again)
PC lost at home to Campbell, 70-57. The Blue Hose are 5-20 and just 1-13 in the Big South.
SC State falls in MEAC match up
SC State lost to North Carolina Central 85-62. The Bulldogs are 7-17 and 4-7 in the MEAC.
Newberry College can’t spring upset
Newberry College gave #16 Lincoln Memorial all they wanted, but came up short in a 92-85 loss.