Skip to main content
Partner logo
Mobile Icon Link Mobile Icon Link Mobile Icon Link Gamecocks+

Feb. 27, 2011

Box Score | Quotes | Box Score in PDF Format Get Acrobat Reader

South Carolina vs. Vanderbilt
February 27, 2011 • Columbia, S.C.
Team 1st 2nd OT Total
Vanderbilt 26 30 18 74
South Carolina 28 28 4 60
Coach Staley
L. Sutton & I. Walker

COLUMBIA, S.C. – South Carolina dropped its second-straight overtime decision in a 74-60 loss to Vanderbilt Sunday afternoon at Colonial Life Arena. The Gamecocks (16-13, 8-8 SEC) trailed for just the 24 seconds of regulation time and saw the Commodores (19-10, 10-6 SEC) rally from a 10-point deficit in the second half to send the game to overtime. South Carolina established its second-half lead behind the relentless pressure of junior guard La’Keisha Sutton who scored 13 of her game-high 20 points in the second period.

In the first half, South Carolina got 12 points from sophomore guard Ieasia Walker to build a nine-point lead with three minutes left in the period. She scored in a variety of ways – two 3-pointers, a pair of drives in the lane and two free throws, but Vanderbilt mounted a rally in the closing minutes that would portend events to come in the second half. The teams were tied 26-26 with 18 seconds left, and Walker hit a runner in the lane to send South Carolina into the locker room with a slim 28-26 lead.

The game grew decidedly more physical in the second half with both teams trying to control the interior. After Elan Brown knotted the game at 34-34, Sutton went to work, personally outscoring the Commodores 8-2 in a three-minute span. Walker’s layup off a steal and Markeshia Grant’s spin move to get in the lane for a bucket stretched the spurt to 12-2, which gave South Carolina a 46-36 advantage with 8:44 left to play.

The teams traded baskets to get to 48-38 when tempers flared, resulting in two technical fouls called within a minute of each other. The back-and-forth parade to the free throw line left the Gamecocks with a 50-41 edge with 5:25 on the clock. At that point, Vanderbilt locked down on its defensive glass, limiting the South Carolina to just one hotly-contested shot per possession.

Hannah Tuomi started the closing 15-6 run with a move on the right block. After Stephanie Holzer cleaned up a Gamecock miss, she hit a jumper from the free throw line then turned a South Carolina turnover into a layup to bring the Commodores within three at 50-47 with 3:37 to play. Sutton drove for a layup, but Gabby Smith answered with a mid-range jumper and Tuomi tied it up at 52-52 with a traditional three-point play on the next possession.

Again, Sutton provided the answer for South Carolina, turning a steal into a transition layup with just under two minutes remaining. On the other end, there was a scramble for a missed Vanderbilt shot that saw Courtney Newton get fouled. The junior calmed netted both the resulting free throws for a 56-52 Gamecock edge with 1:24 to play. Angela Puleo responded with a pair of free throws on the other end to cut the lead in half.

After a timeout, Walker’s 3-point attempt wouldn’t fall, and Jence Rhoads reeled in the rebound. Her jumper on the other end rimmed out, but she put back her own miss to tie things up 56-56 with 43 seconds to go. The Gamecocks called Sutton’s number to create an opportunity, but the Commodore defense forced her out of bounds on her baseline drive. South Carolina’s defense held up, not allowing Vanderbilt to get off a shot before time expired.

In overtime, Vanderbilt opened with a 3-pointer from Brown and never looked back. Trailing by nine, Sutton again tried to put the Gamecocks on her back with a 3-pointer from the right corner, but it was not enough as the Commodores picked up the victory.

Walker joined Sutton in double figures with 14 points, while Charenee Stephens crashed the boards for a game-high 10, including seven on the offensive end. Walker handed out six assists and picked up three steals as well.

With the game’s result, the Gamecocks draw the fifth seed in this week’s SEC Tournament and will face 12th-seeded Ole Miss at 6:30 p.m. (CT) on Thu., Mar. 3, in Nashville.