WASHINGTON, D.C.: The Gamecocks trailed by 11 points at halftime but fought their way through adversity with clutch shooting and timely defense to come away with a 74-71 victory at Georgetown, Saturday. GG Jackson led the second-half comeback before Meechie Johnson capped it with a clutch 3-pointer in the final minute of overtime.
There wasn’t much that went right for the Gamecocks in the first half as they trailed the Hoyas in almost every statistical category. South Carolina shot just 32% from the floor and turned it over ten times before the break. Worse yet, USC’s star freshman and leading scorer, GG Jackson, was held scoreless in the first half and looked to be in for his worst game. But Jackson made amends in the second half, scoring 22 points to lead the comeback and help force overtime.
Despite the rough start, USC briefly led the Hoyas in regulation. Hayden Brown’s layup gave the Gamecocks a 62-61 lead with 3:08 left. Moments later, Chico Carter found Jacobi Wright for a short jumper, extending South Carolina’s lead to three. But USC missed its next two shots from the floor and Johnson missed the front end of a one-and-one to open the door for Georgetown. The Hoyas retook the lead on Primo Spears’ jump shot with just five seconds left. Hayden Brown split a pair of foul shots on the other end, sending the game into overtime.
The teams traded baskets in the extra period with neither team taking control entering the final minute. With less than 30 seconds remaining, Benjamin Bosmans-Verdonk rebounded Carter’s miss and pitched it out to Johnson. Johnson seized on the opportunity, drilling the go-ahead 3-pointer and delivering the knockout blow. The Gamecocks withstood a couple of desperation shots from the Hoyas in the final seconds to claim their first road victory under Lamont Paris.
Jackson grabbed eight rebounds to go with his 22 points and Johnson (17 points) dished out a career-high eight assists before sinking the game-winner.
South Carolina (4-4) is off until Sunday, Dec. 11th, when Presbyterian College will pay a visit to Columbia. Tipoff from the Colonial Life Arena is set for 6 p.m.