Feb. 19, 2005
By JOHN ZENOR
AP Sports Writer
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. (AP) – Kennedy Winston and Earnest Shelton combined to hit seven 3-pointers in the second half and No. 16 Alabama routed South Carolina 87-68 on Saturday.
They each had three 3-pointers in the first 10 minutes of the half to ensure the Crimson Tide (21-4, 10-2 Southeastern Conference) wouldn’t even come close to becoming another high-profile victim of the Gamecocks.
Held to a combined six points in the first half, Winston finished with 19 and Shelton had 16 as Alabama remained unbeaten at Coleman Coliseum and won for the 10th time in 11 games. They were 0-for-7 between them in the first half.
Despite a strong start, the Gamecocks (14-9, 6-6) couldn’t duplicate Tuesday night’s 73-61 upset of No. 3 Kentucky, their first win over a ranked opponent in nearly 3 years. Alabama started a 33-8 run in the final 5 minutes of the first half to turn a one-point game into an easy win.
Chuck Davis had 18 points and five assists for the Tide, which hit 18 of 21 free throws and was 13-of-27 on 3-pointers. Ronald Steele had nine points and nine of Alabama’s 22 assists (on 28 baskets).
The Gamecocks, who were seeking their first back-to-back wins over ranked foes since 1997, fell to 1-7 on the road.
Carlos Powell had 15 of his 17 points after halftime for South Carolina, while reserves Josh Gonner had 15 points and Antoine Tisby added 12.
The Tide led 36-25 at halftime thanks to a late 10-0 surge sparked by Jean Felix over the final 3:14. Felix came off the bench to hit consecutive 3-pointers, win a scramble for a loose ball, collect two rebounds and hit two free throws during that span.
The Gamecocks’ didn’t hit a field goal after Tisby’s layup with 4:57 left. Powell made two free throws with 31 seconds to play but Shelton then rebounded his own miss and hit an off-balance shot at the buzzer for his only points of the half.
Shelton carried that momentum over, hitting two quick 3-pointers after Tarence Kinsey opened with a 3 to cut South Carolina’s deficit to eight points.
The Gamecocks couldn’t come closer than 18 points after the Tide pushed the lead to as many as 28, losing for the fifth time in the past six meetings.