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March 1, 2003

Recap | Box Score

Dave Odom, South Carolina:
“This was not an easy win by any means, but it was a much-needed win. Our team responded when they had their backs to the wall. I thought a big key was when (Matt) Freije hit the three to put them up by six (39-33) and then we went on a 14-2 run. We had struggled to keep the lead and they managed to have their way with us early in the second half. I would like to salute Mike Boynton. When we needed some senior leadership in the second half, he helped provide it. He came through for us. That’s a hard thing he did today. He hadn’t played much lately and to come in and be counted on like that was key. Mike is a smart player who knows where ever player is supposed to be on every play. Chris Warren kept us going with a couple of threes in the second half. We have lost our effectiveness inside and Tony Kitchings is struggling. We need to do something to help him out. It’s been a tough year but the players have been resilient.”

Kevin Stallings, Vanderbilt:
“I thought a key point in the game was when Lakey was fouled driving to the basket and the referees took his free throws away. Then we turned the ball over and they hit a 3-pointer. They hit us with a bunch of shots after that. That was the turning point because [South Carolina] had all the momentum and we were fighting to stay in the game with Freije on the bench. This was a typical game for us. We have a 2-3-5 minute stretch where we can’t score, and USC took advantage of that to extend the lead and we were struggling to get back into it all night. We are frustrated right now, but you can’t focus on that, you have to look ahead. We have been frustrated for a long time now.”