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Feb. 21, 2010

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LEXINGTON, KY – South Carolina suffered a 71-50 loss at No. 16 Kentucky Sunday afternoon at Memorial Coliseum as the Gamecocks (13-13, 6-8 SEC) had difficulty shooting the ball throughout the contest, hitting just 32.3 percent from the field, including a season-low 8.3 percent from 3-point range. Sophomore Charenee Stephens provided the most impassioned effort, collecting her third double-double of the season with 11 points and 10 rebounds, while Kelsey Bone added 13 points.

The Gamecocks struggled offensively in the first half, shooting just 30 percent with the Wildcats out-rebounding them 27-16. Kentucky, meanwhile hit 41.7 percent of its shots, most of those coming in transition as the Wildcats were quick to turn a rebound or a turnover into a fast break. South Carolina did avoid any unanswered Kentucky run more than seven points, but the Gamecocks could not put together back-to-back buckets the entire period and went into the locker room trailing 36-20.

In the second half, the Gamecocks made a concerted effort to find Bone on the inside, and the freshman netted nine points in the final 20 minutes. The defensive effort slowed down Kentucky’s offense, especially in transition, but the Wildcats’ shots continued to fall at a high rate – 45.5 percent for the half – and South Carolina made little headway, drawing no closer than 12 points at 46-34 on Samone Kennedy’s shot-clock beating 3-pointer with 13:07 left in the game.

South Carolina returns home for its final regular-season game at Colonial Life Arena when the Gamecocks host the No. 20/20 Georgia Bulldogs at 7 p.m. on Thu., Feb. 25.