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Jan. 3, 2009

South Carolina at NC State | 2 p.m.
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Last Time Out
South Carolina opened well and held on late for a 58-50 win over Jacksonville on Tuesday afternoon at Colonial Life Arena. The Gamecocks’ three seniors all reached double figures as South Carolina shot 45.2 percent to Jacksonville’s 29.0 percent and out-rebounded the Dolphins 45-24. Brionna Dickerson led the way with 15 points, while Demetress Adams and C.J. Pace followed just behind with 14 and 13 points, respectively.

Series Notes
NC State leads the series 18-8 after winning eight of the last 10 meetings. The most recent Wolfpack victory came in the second round of the 2008 Women’s NIT, which was a 72-69 comeback on March 24. The Gamecocks are just 3-8 against the Wolfpack in Raleigh with their last road victory coming on Feb. 15, 1989, by a 67-62 score. South Carolina head coach Dawn Staley is 0-3 against Kay Yow’s NC State teams. The three Temple losses came by a combined 14 points, including a narrow 59-57 escape by the Wolfpack on Dec. 2, 2006. Staley’s first encounter with Yow came in her first season at Temple (2000-01), during which the Owls gave the then-No. 19 NC State a scare before falling 71-64.

Injury Report
Sada Wheeler is not with the team during the semester break for personal reasons, and the timeline for her return is undetermined.

A South Carolina Win Would …
• Be the Gamecocks’ fifth in the last seven games.
• Make the Gamecocks 75-71 against Atlantic Coast Conference teams and be their first win over an ACC team this season after going 1-1 against the league in 2007-08.
• Be head coach Dawn Staley’s first over NC State and her first over an ACC team (0-2 vs. Duke, 0-2 vs. Maryland and 0-3 vs. NC State).

The Gold Standard
While head coach Dawn Staley has become synonymous with Olympic gold, the entire South Carolina coaching staff boasts a wealth of experience and achievement. Including assistant coaches Lisa Boyer, Carla McGhee and Nikki McCray, the Gamecock women’s basketball staff has combined for 39 years of coaching experience, 29 years of playing professionally in the United States, seven Olympic gold medals and two NCAA National Championships.

Spread Offense
Opponents may find it difficult to scout the Gamecocks offense so far this season as the team has had seven different players lead the offense through 12 games. Players have shared the team lead in three games, and only two players have been the team’s sole points leader in multiple games ñ senior Brionna Dickerson and freshman LaKeisha Sutton.

Chairman of the Boards
Senior Demetress Adams fifth in the SEC with 8.4 rebounds per game. She was atop the standings in the category for much of the early season thanks to grabbing double-digit boards in five of the Gamecocks’ first eight games. Since tying her season high with 12 rebounds against USC Upstate, she has flirted with double figures just once in four games, snagging nine caroms in the win over Charlotte. Since returning from Cancun, Adams has picked up her offensive output as well, recording double-doubles in her first three games back in the U.S. In fact, she has scored 14 or more points in five of the last seven games and currently sits in 20th in the SEC with 11.3 points per game.

Upping the Pace
Senior guard/forward C.J. Pace enjoyed a career outing against Charlotte on Dec. 21, netting 16 points on 5-of-10 shooting, including 2-of-2 from 3-point range. She missed the USC Upstate game with an ankle injury and struggled to re-discover her shot against No. 3/4 Stanford, hitting just 2-of-10 from the field. She found her way against the 49ers, largely by crashing the boards as she snagged seven rebounds, including a career-high four on the offensive glass. She also answered the call against Jacksonville, scoring 13 points to go with seven rebounds and a career-high two blocked shots. The surge has lifted her scoring average to 6.5 points, fourth-best on the team.

Doing the Double-Double
South Carolina senior Demetress Adams is tied for second in the SEC lead with four double-doubles this season. Adams is one behind Kentucky’s Eleia Roddy and tied with Angel Robinson of Georgia, but has reached her number in fewer games than her nearest rivals. Roddy and Robinson both needed 14 and 13 games, respectively to get to their mark, while Adams has turned in four double-doubles in just 12 games. In her career, Adams has posted 16 double-doubles, and the Gamecocks are 13-3 in those games.

It’s a Block Party!
After recording 55 blocked shots in 2007-08, the third-most in school history, senior Demetress Adams looks to continue her charge up the Gamecocks’ career blocked shots list. She needs just three to meet former teammate Ilona Burgrova’s 133 in third place.
Career Blocked Shots
1. 177 Lakesha Tolliver (2004-08)
2. 148 Michelle Murray (1989-93)
3. 133 Ilona Burgrova (2004-08)
4. 130 Demetress Adams (2005-present)

Judging January
The Gamecocks are 161-158 all-time in the month of January. South Carolina’s best record in the first month of the year came in the 1979-80 season when the Gamecocks were 10-1. In January, Carolina is 99-66 at home, 49-84 on the road and a perfect 4-0 at a neutral site (In the Gamecock history books, 17 games played in January do not indicate the site of the contest, during which Carolina is 9-8.) The Gamecocks are slated to play eight games in January this season.

Deciding December
The Gamecocks have a 136-73 record all-time in the month of December, including Tuesday’s win over Jacksonville. South Carolina has gone undefeated in the last month of the year four times, including a 7-0 mark in the 2001-02 season. The most recent perfect December was a 6-0 record in the 2005-06 season. The Gamecocks are 76-21 at home in December and 31-28 on the road. The gap narrows to 22-20 in December games played at a neutral site. (Seven December games in the Gamecock history books do not indicate the site of the contest, during which Carolina is 5-2.) This season, the Gamecocks recorded a 4-3 record in December with a 4-2 mark at Colonial Life Arena.

The Adams Family
Senior Demetress Adams (Bishopville, S.C./Lee Central) is fifth in the SEC with 8.4 rebounds per game … leads the team and ranks 20th in the SEC with 11.3 points per game … is fifth in the league with 30.6 minutes per game … has recorded four double-doubles this season and has been the team’s leading rebounder seven times … shot 5-of-7 from the field for 14 points to go with eight rebounds against Jacksonville … tied for team-high honors with five rebounds to go with six points against No. 1 UConn.

What Do You Serve With Brie?
Senior Brionna Dickerson (Columbia, S.C./Heathwood Hall) is second on the team and ranks 21st in the SEC with 11.3 points per game … is second in the league with 33.1 minutes played per game … led the team with 15 points and four assists against Jacksonville … netted seven points on 2-of-4 shooting against No. 1 UConn.

You Can Call Me Cocoa
Sophomore Lauren Falohun (Atlanta, Ga./Pace Academy) averages 3.7 points and 1.8 assists.

The Kennedy Legacy
Sophomore Samone Kennedy (Birmingham, Ala./Ramsay) has started the last five games … leads the team with 2.0 assists per game … tied for the team lead with 11 points against No. 1 UConn.

Jewel of the Nile
Sophomore Jewel May (Conyers, Ga./Heritage) is second on the team with 6.1 rebounds per game, 16th-best in the SEC, to go with 5.5 points per outing … grabbed a game-high nine rebounds against Jacksonville, narrowly missing her second career double-double with nine points as well … returned to the starting lineup against No. 1 UConn and added eight points and a team-high tying five rebounds.

A Newton of Force
Redshirt freshman Courtney Newton (Flowery Branch, Ga./Flowery Branch) has played in nine games after missing the first two games with a right knee injury … battled for a pair of rebounds and swiped a steal against Jacksonville.

Set the Pace
Senior C.J. Pace (Snellville, Ga./Chipola College) averages 6.5 points and 5.6 rebounds … has reached double-digit points in two of the last three games … had a solid all-around game against Jacksonville with 13 points, seven rebounds, two blocked shots and two steals.

CSI: Columbia
Freshman Charenee Stephens (Decatur, Ga./Southwest DeKalb) made her season debut on Dec. 28 after sitting out the first 10 games for personal reasons … recorded her first career blocked shot against Jacksonville … grabbed two offensive rebounds against UConn.

Jersey Girl
Freshman LaKeisha Sutton (Trenton, N.J./Trenton Catholic) is the team’s third-highest scorer with 8.3 points per game … is 14th in the SEC with a .636 free-throw percentage … grabbed a career-best three defensive rebounds against Jacksonville … tied for the team lead with 11 points against No. 1 UConn on 4-of-8 shooting and blocked two shots.

Miranda Rights
Freshman Miranda Tate (Bolingbrook, Ill./Bolingbrook) is scoring 2.8 points per game … returned to the court against No. 1 UConn after suffering a left knee injury against No. 3/4 Stanford.

T Time
Freshman Tonia Williams (Warner Robins, Ga./Houston County) has come off the bench in five of six games this season.