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March 18, 2007

Recap | Box Score | Quotes

Final Score: South Carolina 81, Hartford 40

Updated Records: South Carolina: 18-14, Hartford 25-8

What’s Next: South Carolina vs. Hofstra (Women’s NIT third round) Wed., March 21 at 7 p.m.

With Sunday’s win over Hartford…

— South Carolina set up a third-round matchup with Hofstra, who knocked off Seton Hall by a 64-52 margin Saturday night.

— South Carolina picked up its third win in its last four games, as Carolina finished the regular season with a win over Mississippi State and beat Auburn in the first round of the SEC Tournament before losing to Tennessee in the second round of the conference tournament.

— The Gamecocks improved to 3-0 all-time against teams from the America East Conference. Carolina had previous wins over Maine in 1991 and over New Hampshire in 1997.

— The Gamecocks picked up their 18th win of the season, marking Carolina’s third-highest win total since joining the SEC in 1991-92. The Gamecocks won 25 games in 2001-02 and won 22 games in 2002-03.

Carolina Has Its Way Against A Good Defense

:: South Carolina sliced through a very good Hartford defense Sunday, as the Hawks entered the game ranking third nationally in scoring defense, allowing the opposition to score only 52.4 points per game. The Hawks also ranked 13th nationally in field goal percentage defense, holding the opposition to .355 pct shooting from the field entering the game. Carolina converted on 34-of-55 from the field Sunday (.618 pct.) Entering Sunday’s game, Hartford had limited 32 of its 33 opponents to 70 points or less. Purdue (83 points scored against Hartford on Nov. 12) was the only other team to surpass the 80-point mark against the Hawks this year.

One For The Record Books

:: South Carolina converted on 34-of-55 from the field Sunday (.618 pct), marking the sixth-highest field goal percentage in school history and the highest ever at the Colonial Center.

Fabbri Gets Starting Nod

:: Lea Fabbri returned to the starting lineup for the first time since Carolina’s game at Vanderbilt on Feb. 18. The move was a beneficial one, as Fabbri dished out five assists in the first half and finished the game with nine, a total that was her second-highest of the season trailing only the 11 assists she dished out against North Carolina A&T on Nov. 17.

Game-Changing Run

:: South Carolina went on a 20-0 run midway through the first half to take a 12-10 lead at the 13:54 mark and turn it into a 32-10 advantage at the 5:22 mark. The Gamecocks held the Hawks scoreless for about eight and ½ minutes during that stretch.

At The Half

:: South Carolina took a 40-19 lead into the locker room at halftime. Including Sunday’s win, the Gamecocks improved to 14-1 when leading at intermission. Carolina’s 40 first-half points marked their highest halftime output since the Gamecocks scored 42 points in the opening stanza in their 95-35 beating of Alabama on Jan. 14. Carolina’s 40 first-half points also marked the most allowed by Hartford in the first half of any game this year. South Carolina’s Melanie Johnson led all scorers with 13 points in the first half

Women’s NIT Tidbits

:: Sunday’s game marked the first-ever meeting between South Carolina and Hartford and marked the Gamecocks’ second straight appearance in the Women’s NIT. Carolina has been to the post-season four of the last six years. The Gamecocks won the 1979 Women’s NIT title (then referred to as the NWIT) by beating California, Oregon and Drake in succession to claim the title. Sunday’s win moved the Gamecocks to 4-1 all-time in Women’s NIT play.