USC couldn’t avoid an 0-2 SEC start Saturday, dropping a tilt with LSU 71-68 Saturday afternoon at Colonial Life Arena. It tight battle for most of the game. LSU lead by two at the half and the margin stayed within a few points until the Tigers stretched the lead to double digits around the five minute mark. LSU lead by as many as 14 before the Gamecocks scratched back to make it interesting late, but they never had a chance to make a serious claim at the win down the stretch.
Sindarius Thornwell led the Gamecocks with a career high 25 points. Tyrone Johnson scored 15 points and Brenton Williams added 11. After that trio no other Gamecock had more than Michael Carrera’s five points.
Take a listen to some of what Frank Martin had to say here:
- LSU was led by its bigs: Highly touted freshman Jarell Martin scored 18, All-SEC forward Johnny O’Bryant scored 13, and freshman Jordan Mickey added 13.
- USC’s big men struggled against LSU. Demetrius Henry didn’t score a point and had four fouls in 11 minutes. Mindaugas Kacinas only had four points and Desmond Ringer had two points. “Our inside play is just atrocious right now,” Martin said.
- LSU grabbed 16 offensive rebounds that lead to 10 second chance points. USC only had seven offensive rebounds. LSU won the overall rebound battle 42-32.
- Frank Martin applauded the crowd and said it was the first time since he’s been at USC that he felt they had a home court advantage. He said he hopes the fans don’t give up on them. The announced attendance was 12,071.
- Martin said he would go to church Sunday and ask for some strength and get back to work Monday. “I’ll be optimistic Monday. It’s hard for me to be optimistic now.”
- Former North Carolina coach Matt Doherty was on press row. He was sitting next to former Gamecock player and coach George Felton.
Below is our SportsTalk at the Stadium recap of the game: