Gamecocks Outlast Clemson 69-57
COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) – South Carolina's sloppy 69-57 win over Clemson on Thursday night was one of those games where the Gamecocks were thankful to get a win and move on.
The Gamecocks (2-0) are still trying to adjust to a new style of play. They were dominant inside the past few years, but now are focusing more on faster guard play. It's still a work in progress. The Gamecocks turned the ball over 27 times and shot just 36 percent.
''She was stressing everything we didn't do,'' guard Te'a Cooper said when asked what coach Dawn Staleywas asking them in the huddle during a miserable second half.
South Carolina led Clemson 41-25 at the break, but scored just 12 points over the next 15 minutes. They made just three shots and turned the ball over 10 times in a third quarter where they looked totally befuddled by the Tigers zone. There were turnovers trying to pound the ball inside and bad cross court passes as Clemson (2-1) tried to force everything to one side.
''We didn't handle their zone very well,'' Staley said.
Cooper led South Carolina with 15 points.
The Tigers battled back from a slow start. Clemson missed 15 of 17 shots during one first half stretch, falling behind by as much as 21 in the second quarter.
Simone Westbrook had 14 points and five steals and Kobi Thornton added 11 for the Tigers.
South Carolina has won nine in a row over Clemson, the longest streak in the bitter in-state rivalry.
Clemson has lost 90 of its last 91 games against AP Top 25 teams.
The teams combined for 53 fouls, 33 of them by the Tigers.