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Jan. 10, 2007

Box Score

ATHENS, Ga. (AP) -Georgia attacked with its 3-point shooting in the first half and then scored inside in the final 20 minutes while beating South Carolina 80-56 on Wednesday night to end a four-game losing streak.

Georgia, which fell to three Top 25 teams in its four-game losing streak, bounced back in its first Southeastern Conference home game. The Bulldogs took a 41-28 advantage in rebounds and held the Gamecocks to 35.1 percent shooting.

Georgia’s Mike Mercer scored 12 of his game-high 17 points in the second half. The Bulldogs (9-5 overall, 1-1 SEC) also had 15 points from Takais Brown and 12 points with eight rebounds from point guard Sundiata Gaines.

South Carolina (10-4, 0-1) was led by Dwayne Day’s 14 points on 5-for-15 shooting. Dominique Archie added 10 points.

The Gamecocks, who had a six-game winning streak end with Sunday’s loss to No. 9 Kansas, suffered their second straight loss.

Georgia, which leads the SEC with its 41.7 percent 3-point shooting, was 6-for-9 outside the 3-point circle in the first half and 10-for-25 for the game. Georgia’s 38-26 halftime lead matched its biggest lead of the half.

Mercer and Georgia’s other guards began driving to the basket past South Carolina’s zone defense in the second half. On three straight possessions, Mercer scored on a short floater, a drive to the basket and a tip, giving the Bulldogs a 49-31 lead that forced South Carolina coach Dave Odom to call time-out.

Georgia’s big lead was 29 points at 72-43.