COLUMBIA, S.C. - South Carolina returns from a week-long holiday break to host Presbyterian in non-conference play at Colonial Life Arena on Saturday in a mid-day matinee. The meeting marks the 39th all-time between the two schools and the second-straight season with a contest between the two intrastate rivals. South Carolina won last season's meeting 66-58 behind 15 points from Bruce Ellington. The contest will be televised on CSS, which will be broadcast on Time Warner Cable channel 506 with a digital converter. Matt Stewart (play-by-play) and Kyle Macy (analyst) will handle the call for Saturday's contest. Fans can also listen on GamecocksOnline.com, and the Gamecock IMG Sports Network with Andy Demetra (play-by-play) and Casey Manning (analyst) on the call.
OPENING TIP Date: Saturday, Dec. 29, 2012 Tipoff: 1 p.m. ET Location: Columbia, S.C. Arena: Colonial Life Arena (18,000) Series: South Carolina leads 31-7 Last Meeting: South Carolina win, 66-58, Dec. 13, 2011; in Columbia, S.C. Television: CSS (Time Warner Cable channel 506) Talent: Matt Stewart (pxp), Kyle Macy (analyst) Radio: Gamecock IMG Radio Network Sirius: 93; XM: 199 Talent: Andy Demetra (pxp), Casey Manning (analyst) Tickets | @GamecockMBB | Live Stats | Game Notes
Carolina Quick Hits
- South Carolina is in its 105th season of basketball.
- The Gamecocks are led by first-year head coach Frank Martin. His associate head coach is Brad Underwood and his assistant coaches are Matt Figger and Lamont Evans. Andy Assaley is the director of basketball operations.
- South Carolina earned a 63-57 victory vs. Manhattan last Saturday prior to the holiday break in a neutral site non-conference matchup at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, N.Y., competing in the BROOKLYN HOOPS Holiday Invitational. Junior guard Brenton Williams led a trio of Gamecocks in double figures with 17 points in the contest. It was the fourth time this season he has led or shared the team lead in scoring.
- Senior guard LaShay Page, a post-graduate student from Dillon, S.C., did not participate in South Carolina's contest versus Manhattan due to an academic issue.
- Senior forward Lakeem Jackson pulled down a game-best 11 rebounds vs. the Jaspers. Over the course of the last two games (App State, Manhattan), Jackson is averaging a team best 9.0 rebounds per game, while his 12.5 points per contest is second on the team during the stretch.
- South Carolina scored 22 second chance points vs. Manhattan, marking the second-most in the category in a game this season (23 vs. St. John's).
- Jackson ranks fifth in the SEC with 7.9 rebounds per contest.
- Freshman forward Mindaugas Kacinas posted the first double-double of his career with 12 points and a game-best 12 rebounds vs. Appalachian State on Dec. 19. He also played a season high 34 minutes, posting three assists and three blocks as well.
- Junior guard Eric Smith dished a career high nine assists vs. Appalachian State, including seven in the first half, which matched his previous career high. Smith leads the Gamecocks with 3.9 assists per game.
- Jackson posted a season high 16 points vs. App State on 8-of-11 shooting from the field. Jackson ranks among SEC leaders with a 64.1 shooting percentage (50-78).
- Carolina owns a 70-16 all-time record against current schools in the Big South.
Presbyterian enters Saturday's contest with a 2-10 overall record after most recently suffering a 78-70 loss at Appalachian State on Dec. 22. The Blue Hose began the season with six-straight contests away from home, going 0-6 in those games. PC has wins this season vs. Toccoa Falls and North Greenville. Senior guard Khalid Mutakabbir leads the squad with 14.7 points per game, while also providing 3.3 assists per contest. The Blue Hose is led by head coach Gregg Nibert in his 24th season.
By The Numbers 100 - Senior forward Lakeem Jackson will play in his 100th career game in the Garnet and Black on Saturday vs. Presbyterian. Jackson is enjoying a career season in 2012-13 thus far, posting 9.7 points and a team-best 7.9 rebounds per game. 42-23 - South Carolina out-rebounded Manhattan by 19 boards last Saturday, the greatest margin in the category for Carolina this season. It was the highest margin for a Gamecocks squad since out-rebounding USC Upstate 55-34 (+21) on Nov. 23, 2010. 3-straight - Junior guard Brian Richardson has posted three-straight double-figure scoring contests entering Saturday's contest vs. PC, marking the first time since the first three games of his career in the Garnet and Black that he has posted three-consecutive games with double-figure points. Richardson contributes 7.6 points per game this season. 20 - South Carolina scored 20 points off of 13 Manhattan turnovers in last Saturday's contest. 45.9% - South Carolina ranks fourth in the SEC with a 45.9% field goal percentage entering Saturday's game. +10.3 - South Carolina ranks 12th in the nation and second in the SEC in rebounding margin with a mark of +10.3.
Up Next For The Gamecocks
South Carolina concludes non-conference play when it hosts SC State on Jan. 5 at 1:30 p.m. ET. The contest will be televised on FSN.