Jermaine Couisnard and Wildens Leveque each scored 14 points to lead South Carolina to a 78-60 season-opening victory against visiting South Carolina Upstate on Tuesday night in Columbia, S.C.
James Reese V, a transfer from North Texas, and Erik Stevenson, a transfer from Washington, each scored nine points for the Southeastern Conference’s Gamecocks, who won despite hitting just 4 of 19 (21.1 percent) from behind the arc.
Josh Gray, a 7-foot transfer from LSU, added eight points and eight rebounds for South Carolina, which outrebounded USC Upstate 52-34 overall and 17-3 on the offensive boards. The Gamecocks scored 16 second-chance points.
Bryson Mozone scored 20 points and Jalen Breazeale had 17 for the Big South’s Spartans.
Dalvin White’s 3-pointer cut Upstate’s deficit to 63-55 with 6:32 remaining. Baskets by Couisnard and Leveque, however, increased South Carolina’s advantage to 12 with 5:56 showing, and the Spartans never threatened after that.
Reese scored nine points and Couisnard added eight to help the Gamecocks build a 43-34 halftime lead.
Mozone had 12 points and Breazeale added 10 for the Spartans, who shot 5-of-9 from 33-point range but were outrebounded 28-17 in the first half.
The Gamecocks outscored USC Upstate 26-10 in the paint with the help of 12 first-half offensive rebounds.
Trailing by a point, South Carolina used an 11-2 run to go up 29-21 with 6:20 to go in the half. TaQuan Woodley and Gray each scored four points during the spurt.
–Field Level Media