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Dec. 18, 2012

December 18, 2012

COLUMBIA, S.C. – South Carolina returns from a 12-day break to host Appalachian State on Wednesday in the first part of a doubleheader with the Gamecock women’s team. Wednesday’s meeting, Carolina’s first after the break for final exams, marks the fourth meeting all-time between the Gamecocks and Mountaineers. The contest will be televised on Fox Sports Carolinas/Fox Sports South with Andy Demetra (play-by-play) and Eddie Fogler (analyst) on the call. Thirty minutes after the conclusion of the men’s contest, Dawn Staley will lead the Gamecock women’s team against No. 1 Stanford. Below are game notes and details.

The South Carolina men’s and women’s basketball teams and staff will wear green ribbons during Wednesday’s doubleheader to honor the victims of the tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn.

Date: Wednesday, Dec. 19, 2012
Tipoff: 5 p.m. ET
Location: Columbia, S.C.
Arena: Colonial Life Arena (18,000)
Series: South Carolina leads 3-0
Last Meeting: South Carolina win, 91-57, Dec. 1, 2004 in Columbia, S.C.
Television: Fox Sports Carolinas/Fox Sports South
Talent: Andy Demetra (pxp), Eddie Fogler (analyst)
Radio: Gamecock IMG Radio Network
Sirius: 123; XM: 199
Talent: Derek Scott (pxp), Casey Manning (analyst)
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Carolina Quick Hits
– South Carolina is in its 105th season of basketball.
– The Gamecocks are led by first-year head coach Frank Martin. His associate head coach is Brad Underwood and his assistant coaches are Matt Figger and Lamont Evans. Andy Assaley is the director of basketball operations.
– South Carolina hosts Appalachian State on Wednesday before traveling to New York City for the second time this season to face Manhattan in the Brooklyn Hoops Holiday Invitational on Saturday at 5:30 p.m. ET, at the Barclays Center. The meeting vs. the Jaspers will be the eighth all-time for Carolina, and the first since the 1981 season.
– The Gamecocks errupted for a season-high 91 points in a 17-point victory vs. Jacksonville on Dec. 7. Freshman forward Michael Carrera paced four Gamecocks in double-figures with 17 points, while he also collected a team high nine rebounds.
– Junior guard Eric Smith matched a career high with seven assists vs. Jacksonville. He only committed one turnover in 24 minutes in the contest as well. He paces the Gamecocks with 3.4 assists per game.
– South Carolina hit a stellar 62.5 percent (10-16) from 3-point range vs. Jacksonville, led by a perfect 4-of-4 effort from junior guard Brian Richardson, and a 4-of-5 performance from Brenton Williams. The duo lead Carolina in shooting percentage from beyond the arc, as Richardson has hit 48.3 percent (14-29) and Williams 47.1 percent (16-34).
– Among freshmen in the SEC, Michael Carrera ranks fourth in scoring (11.3 per game) and second in rebounding (8.0 per game). He has two double-doubles and has posted four double-figure scoring games entering Wednesday’s contest vs. App State.
– Also among freshmen in the SEC, Mindaugas Kacinas ranks third in field goal percentage (61.9 percent), which is a South Carolina best.
– Junior guard Brenton Williams suffered a neck injury midway through the second half vs. St. John’s on Nov. 29. He was transported to a local hospital and further evaluated. He was released and traveled home with the team. He returned vs. Clemson and led the team in scoring with 16 points, his sixth double-figure scoring game of the year.
– South Carolina posted a 74-62 victory over Arkansas Little-Rock on Nov. 25 to claim the 2012 Hoops For Hope Classic tournament title in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico. Senior guard Lakeem Jackson was named to the All-Tournament Team and senior guard LaShay Page was named the tournament’s Most Outstanding Player.
– Senior forward Lakeem Jackson collected his second double-double of the season vs. UALR, scoring 10 points and collecting a career-high 15 rebounds. It was the most rebounds in a contest for Jackson since he collected 14 vs. Alabama on March 11, 2010.
– Senior guard LaShay Page led the Gamecocks with 19.0 points per game in two contests in Puerto Vallarta, including a team high 22 vs. Missouri State.
– Junior guard Brian Richardson scored 14 points vs. Missouri State, including four 3s, just one shy of matching his career high. Richardson played a career-high 38 minutes in the contest.
– Carrera, the Nov. 12 SEC Freshman of the Week, did not play vs. Morgan State, Rider or Elon due to a concussion suffered in practice on Wednesday, Nov. 14. He returned to score 18 points vs. Missouri State, including the game-tying 3-pointer at the end of regulation to send the contest into overtime.
– In two overtime games this season, Carolina has hit an impressive 22-of-24 (91.7%) attempts from the free throw line during OT.
– Carolina owns a 285-130 all-time record against current schools in the Southern Conference.

Scouting Appalachian State
Appalachian State enters Wednesday’s contest with a 2-7 record after breaking a seven-game winless streak on Sunday with an 81-71 victory at UMKC. The Mountaineers shot 61.9 percent (13-of-21) in the second half and connected on each of their final 17 free throws in the victory. Sophomore forward Jay Canty paces ASU with 17.9 points, 6.4 rebounds and 3.2 assists per game, which places him among Southern Conference leaders in each category. He has five 20-point games this season, including a season-best 29 points at Missouri on Dec. 1. Senior forward Nathan Healy (13.2) and sophomore guard Tab Hamilton (12.3) average double-digit points as well. The Moutaineers, picked to finish fourth in the SoCon North Division in the 2012-13 preseason poll, are led by Jason Caple in his third season.

By The Numbers
91 – South Carolina’s 91 points scored vs. Jacksonville on Dec. 7 marked the most points scored by Carolina since posting 91 vs. SC State on Jan. 4, 2011.
38.2% – South Carolina held Jacksonville to just 38.2 percent shooting (26-68) from the field, marking the third opponent this season that the Gamecocks have held to under 40 percent from the field.
62.5% – The Gamecocks shot a blistering 62.5 percent (10-16) from 3-point range vs. Jacksonville, the best percentage with at least 10 attempts from Carolina since hitting 66.7 percent (8-12) at The College of Charleston on Nov. 28, 2008.
20 – For the second time this season the Gamecocks posted 20 assists in a game, hitting the mark vs. Jacksonville on Dec. 7 (Rider, 22). Junior guard Eric Smith dished a team-best seven, while senior forward Lakeem Jackson collected five.
+10.8 – South Carolina ranks 11th in the nation in rebounding margin with a mark of +10.8. The Gamecocks have out-rebounded each of their nine opponents this season.

Up Next For The Gamecocks
South Carolina travels to Brooklyn, N.Y., on Saturday for a 5:30 p.m. ET, neutral site matchup vs. Manhattan. The contest will be played at the newly opened Barclays Center.