COLUMBIA, S.C. - South Carolina hosts Auburn for the first of two matchups between the schools this season. The Tigers posted a 74-71 victory over the Gamecocks in Columbia in last season's only contest between the two schools. Wednesday's game will be broadcast on ESPN3.
OPENING TIP Date: Wednesday, Feb. 5, 2014 Tipoff: 7:30 p.m. ET Location: Columbia, S.C. Arena: Colonial Life Arena (18,000) Series: Auburn leads 20-14 Last Meeting: Auburn win, 74-71, on Jan. 12, 2013, in Columbia, S.C. (Colonial Life Arena) Broadcast:ESPN3 Talent: Roy Philpott (pxp), Stan Lewter (analyst) Radio: Gamecock Radio Network/107.5 The Game in Columbia Sirius: 110; XM: 99 Talent: Andy Demetra (pxp), Casey Manning (analyst) Game Notes | Live Stats | @GamecockMBB on Twitter | Tickets
Carolina Quick Hits - South Carolina is in its 106th season of basketball. - The Gamecocks are led by Frank Martin in his second year. Matt Figger is the associate head coach, and Perry Clark and Lamont Evans are assistant coaches. Andy Assaley is in his second year as the director of operations for the Gamecocks. - The Gamecocks are in their 23rd season of competition in the Southeastern Conference in 2014. Carolina owns a 134-228 (.370) all-time record in SEC play. - Frank Martin owns a 55-53 (.509) all-time record in conference play. - South Carolina held a 15-point lead with just under 11 minutes to play at Ole Miss, but a late run from the Rebels turned the game in the home team's favor as South Carolina fell 75-71 on Saturday. Senior guard Brenton Williams led all scorers with 23 points as he hit 5-of-8 from 3-point range. Freshman guard Sindarius Thornwell added 20 points and a career high six assists. - The Gamecocks earned their first conference win of the season last Wednesday in an 80-52 win over Texas A&M, after holding a 20-point halftime lead. Freshman guards Duane Notice and Sindarius Thornwell paced the Gamecocks with 19 points, four rebounds and three assists apiece. - Carolina's defense held the Aggies to 35.6 percent shooting from the field, and did not a allow a double-digit scorer for the first time this season. - It was announced on Jan. 16 that junior guard Tyrone Johnson suffered a right foot fracture in the Jan. 15 game at Texas A&M, which required surgery. Johnson is out indefinitely. The Plainfield, N.J., native has played in 16 contests this season for Carolina, averaging 11.2 points and a team best 3.4 assists per game. He tallied 11 double-figure scoring games and 11 games with at least three assists prior to his injury. - After hitting 6-of-6 from the free throw line last week at Ole Miss, senior guard Brenton Williams continues to lead the nation in free throw percentage at 95.8 percent (69-of-72/Feb. 1). - Senior guard Brenton Williams posted the second 30-point game of his career last Saturday at Missouri, hitting a career high seven 3s, while adding a perfect 9-of-9 mark from the free throw line. Williams scored 22 of those points and hit five 3s in the second half. - Despite 32 points from Williams and sophomore forward Michael Carrera's first double-double of the year with 16 points and 11 rebounds, South Carolina fell to 0-6 in league play with an 82-74 loss at Missouri on Jan. 25. The Gamecocks dished 12 assists, and committed just 11 turnovers, but poor shooting in the contest - 23-of-59 (39.0%) from the field - saw the home team post the win.
Scouting Auburn The Tigers enter Wednesday's matchup with a 10-9 overall record, which includes a 2-6 mark in SEC games ... Auburn, however, has won its last two games, topping Alabama and Georgia on its home court ... The squad is led by head coach Tony Barbee in his fourth season ... The Tigers are led by the scoring duo of Chris Denson (19.5 ppg) and KT Harrell (19.2 ppg) who are averaging a combined 38.7 points per game which ranks in the top 10 nationally in scoring duos ... Denson ranks second in the SEC in scoring, while Harrell is fifth ... On the front line, 7-footer Asauhn Dixon-Tatum leads the team with 6.3 rebounds and two blocks per game ... Freshman point guard Tahj Shamsid-Deen averages 3.1 assists per contest along with 8.9 points.
Auburn Series Wednesday's meeting vs. Auburn marks the 35th all-time between the two schools. The Rebels won the last meeting, 74-71, on Jan. 12, 2013, at Colonial Life Arena to take a six game lead in the series (14-20), however, the two teams have split the last 10 games in the series.
By The Numbers 3 - The Gamecocks have won three of 10 games when the scoring margin is 10 points or less. 4 - Senior guard Brenton Williams has recorded at least four 3-pointers in four consecutive games after hitting 5-of-8 on Saturday at Ole Miss. 6 - The Gamecocks have played six of their eight SEC games against teams that reside in the top half of the conference. 6 - Freshman Sindarius Thornwell recorded a career-high six assists at Ole Miss. 7 - Thornwell has recorded double-figures in seven of eight SEC games, including four with 20-plus points. 11 - After grabbing 11 rebounds at Ole Miss, sophomore Michael Carrera has pulled down 11 rebounds in two of the last three games. 40.6 - Since the injury to Tyrone Johnson on Jan. 15, Thornwell and Williams have stepped up their scoring numbers. The duo is averaging a combined 40.6 points over the last five games, 13.8 points above their combined season average.
Up Next The Gamecocks travel to Tennessee on Saturday for the only meeting between the two schools this season. Game time is set for 3 p.m. ET, and the game will be broadcast on ESPNU.