The USC basketball team’s season came to a screeching halt Thursday in the first round of the SEC tournament in Nashville. The Gamecocks blew an 18 point lead in the final 11 minutes of a 68-63 loss to Alabama. The loss drops Carolina to 15-16 on the season and all but eliminates them from any hope of an NIT bid.
Darrin Horn discusses loss to Alabama
Devon Downey finished with 21 points and 8 rebounds in what will likely be his final collegiate game. Alabama mixed up its pressure on Downey in the final ten minutes and it threw the entire Gamecock offense off kilter. The Tide went on a 26-5 run to take the lead with 2:07 left.
Devon Downey postgame interview
On a brighter note, especially as you look ahead to the future for USC, the freshmen duo of Lakeem Jackson and Ramon Galloway played well today. Jackson scored 9 points and grabbed a career high 14 rebounds. Galloway came off the bench and scored 14 points.
Lakeem Jackson postgame interview
Ramon Galloway postgame interview
Horn will be counting on Jackson and Galloway to continue their rapid improvement as the program will begin life without Devon Downey next season. It is too early to predict what this team will be like next year, especially since it still isn’t clear if Dominique Archie will be back for a sixth year (unlikely) and how much of an impact the freshman will have. Horn will certainly have his work cut out for him though because the SEC, particularly the SEC East, could be even tougher next season.