Jan. 21, 2004
The South Carolina Gamecocks travel to Gainesville, Florida, to meet the Gators in a Thursday night SEC contest. Game time is set for 7:00 p.m. with all the contest broadcast on WISW Radio (1320 am) with Andy Demetra and Robin Muller providing the commentary.
After winning eight of nine games to start the season, South Carolina (8-7, 0-3) has fallen into a six-game slide over the last month and will try to reverse its fortunes on the road Thursday night against Florida.
On Sunday, USC lost at home against Arkansas for the first time in five years (January 1999) as the Lady Razorbacks escaped Columbia with a 66-52 victory. Kelly Morrone led the Gamecocks with 15 points while Lauren Simms chipped in 11. Iva Sliskovic grabbed 11 boards for her fourth double-figure rebound game of the season.
The SEC’s fourth-ranked scoring offense, the Gamecock attack is led by three players averaging in double figures. The two USC seniors are one-two in the team statistics with Cristina Ciocan first in scoring with an average of 14.1 points per game and Kelly Morrone second at 12.6 per game. Ciocan only needs seven more assists to become South Carolina’s career leader in assists at 596. Freshman Iva Sliskovic is third at 12.3 while Lauren Simms and Olga Gritsaeva are tied for fourth on the team as they both contribute 9.7 points per outing. Iva Sliskovic averages 7.6 rebounds per game to lead the team.
Florida enters Thursday night’s game after upsetting ninth-ranked Georgia Sunday in Athens, 83-73. The Gators (12-5, 2-2) had four players score in double figures with junior forward Tashia Morehead registering a double-double with 22 points and 12 rebounds. With a 2-2 record in the conference so far, the Florida scoring and rebounding is led by senior Vanessa Hayden’s 19 points and 11.4 boards per game. Bernice Mosby is second in scoring as the sophomore is contributing 13.0 points per game off the bench.
The 1999 WBCA National Coach of the Year at Purdue, head coach Carolyn Peck has the Gator program back on track after suffering through a 9-19 record last year during her first season at Florida.
South Carolina has captured the last two USC-UF games with a January 30th 78-64 win in Peck’s first visit to Columbia last season. During the 2001-02 season, South Carolina captured its first win in Gainesville in 10 years with a 69-59 victory. Florida leads the overall series 12-5 and has won five of the seven Gainesville contests.