Dec. 14, 2004
COLUMBIA, S.C. - The University of South Carolina women's basketball team returned to the court after an 11-day break and captured a decisive victory over Florida A&M, 88-55, Tuesday night at the Colonial Center. Redshirt freshman Melanie Johnson produced a career-night to lead the way with a double-double (15 points, 11 rebounds) for the Gamecocks.
South Carolina moved its record to 2-4 on the season while FAMU slipped to 2-5 overall.
USC turned in a stellar offensive performance, shooting better than 53 percent from the field for the game, including 65 percent in the second half. Ten of USC's 11 players scored and for the first time this season, four Gamecocks reached double figures.
Carolina dominated the glass and in the paint. The Gamecocks drastically out-rebounded the Lady Rattlers, 49-18, and scored 44 points in the paint.
It was an even game for the opening 10 minutes, but USC built its lead and began to pull away in the duration, ending the half on a 19-9 run. The Gamecocks went into the locker room with a 35-24 advantage.
Johnson sparked Carolina off the bench with seven points in the opening stanza, including a 5-of-7 effort from the charity stripe, and five rebounds. The Barnwell, S.C., product also had four steals and a pair of blocks in 10 minutes of play. Johnson continued her outstanding play the rest of the way, finishing with 15 points and 11 rebounds. She also pocketed seven steals and dished out four assists to finish with career highs in all four categories.
Redshirt sophomore Angela Hunter netted a career-best 14 points and also led the team with a career-high five assists. Lauren Simms finished with 11 points. The sophomore captain has scored in double-figures in every game this season.
Sophomore Stacy Booker followed up her 28-point performance in USC's last outing by reaching double-figures again. Booker had 10 points and added four assists.
With today's win, Carolina improved to 15-2 in non-conference games at the Colonial Center and 6-0 all-time against Florida A&M.
Tuesday's game marked the first of five over the next nine days for the Gamecocks. USC will be back in action at the Colonial Center on Thursday, Dec. 16, against North Carolina State. Tip-off is scheduled for 7 p.m.
South Carolina vs. Florida A&M
South Carolina Head Coach Susan Walvius
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