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Nov. 25, 2003

Box Score

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) – Tarence Kinsey scored 15 points and freshman Renaldo Balkman came off the bench to contribute 13 points as South Carolina topped Richmond 67-61 in the Guardians Classic championship game Tuesday night.

Kinsey, who scored only 43 points as a freshman last year, has scored 79 points in the Gamecocks’ first five games. He was named the most valuable player of the tournament.

The game was halted for more than 10 minutes with 3:29 left when South Carolina junior guard Josh Gonner was injured in a backcourt collision on a fastbreak. Gonner was removed from the floor on a stretcher and taken to North Kansas City Hospital with a possible neck injury.

Richmond led 47-43 with just more than 10 minutes left, but two Brandon Wallace free throws with 7:22 left put the Gamecocks ahead 50-49 to stay.

Tony Dobbins led the Spiders with 15 points, while Mike Skrocki contributed 13 points. Eric Zwayer scored 10 of his 12 points in the first half, but got into foul trouble in the second half.

Joining Kinsey on the All-Tournament team were Carlos Powell, who had 12 points in the title game, Skorcki, Zwayer and Tommy Johnson of Southwest Missouri State, which finished third.

There were four lead changes and three ties in the first half, with the Gamecocks leading 33-32 at intermission. No more than seven points separated the two teams in the opening half.

South Carolina coach Dave Odom was called for a technical with 15:14 left in the half, leading to a five-point play by Mike Skrocki, who made a field goal and three free throws.

The Gamecocks countered with a four straight three minutes later when Tarence Kinsey was fouled while making a 3-pointer and made his free throw.

Eric Zwayer came off the bench to hit 5 of 6 from the field and led the Spiders with 10 first-half points.

The Gamecocks played the tournament without senior forward Rolando Howell, who is suspended for the first 10 games and is expected to return Dec. 20 for the North Carolina State game.