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Nov. 14, 2014

South Carolina Game Notes Get Acrobat Reader

Game Information

Date: Saturday, November 15, 2014 | 7 p.m.
Site: Columbia, S.C.
Arena: Colonial Life Arena (18,000)
Tickets: $7 adult, $4 youth (17 and under) | Parking Information
Broadcast: SEC Network+ via WatchESPN (Brad Muller, play-by-play; Debbie Antonelli, analyst)
Radio: 107.5 The Game (Dan Wolfgang);
Live Stats:

South Carolina Notables

  • The Gamecocks launch their 41st season of women’s basketball tonight against the Trojans. It is the program’s 24th season in the SEC.
  • South Carolina enters its seventh season under head coach Dawn Staley, during which the Gamecocks have gone 121-71. South Carolina has played in the last three NCAA Tournaments, including two trips to the Sweet 16.
  • South Carolina is 28-12 all-time in season openers with a 13-1 record in openers played at home.
  • In a vote of student-athletes and coaches, the Gamecocks have four captains this season – Asia Dozier, Elem Ibiam, Tiffany Mitchell and Aleighsa Welch.
  • Staley enters the season with the highest national ranking of her coaching career at No. 2 in both the AP and USA Today Coaches Preseason Polls. Her previous high was No. 4, which the Gamecocks reached last season.
  • With the preseason ranking of No. 2, South Carolina has been in the AP top 10 for 12 straight weeks/polls. The Gamecocks ended the 2013-14 season ranked eighth. It is the longest top-10 stretch for the program since a 13-poll stay from Jan. 22, 1980 through Dec. 16, 1980.
  • The Gamecocks have won at least 25 games in each of the last three seasons, the first such stint in school history.
  • The Gamecocks have won their last 18 home games, including all 16 last season.
  • South Carolina returns 10 of the 12 letterwinners from last season’s SEC Championship team.
  • The Gamecocks were predicted to repeat as SEC Champions by both the league’s coaches and the media.
  • All five starters from last season’s NCAA Sweet 16 squad return for 2014-15 as well as the bench’s top scorer and rebounder in Alaina Coates.
  • The addition of the SEC Network has allowed for 24 of the Gamecocks’ 29 regular-season games to be broadcast nationally this season.


A South Carolina Win Would…

  • Be the fifth in a season opener in head coach Dawn Staley’s seven-year tenure, but just her third at home as the Gamecocks have opened three of her seven seasons on the road.
  • Give the Gamecocks a 29-12 all-time record in season openers.
  • Be the Gamecocks’ 19th straight at Colonial Life Arena, the longest stretch in facility history.

Southern Cal Series Notes
The Gamecocks and Trojans have squared off twice before tonight, but this is the first meeting in Columbia. The teams first met in the AIAW Satellite Tournament on March 12, 1980, with the Gamecocks advancing with a 70-60 victory. South Carolina again traveled to Los Angeles last season, coming away with a 70-50 win on Nov. 25, 2013, behind 22 points and five steals from Tiffany Mitchell. South Carolina went on to claim their first SEC regular-season championship, while Southern Cal brought home its first Pac-12 Tournament Championship.

Hall of Fame Hype
Tonight’s game pits a pair of Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame players against each other now as head coaches. Both Staley and Southern Cal coach Cynthia Cooper were international standouts for USA Basketball as part of their hall of fame careers as Staley succeeded Cooper as the point guard for the Americans.

For Openers
In its 41st season of women’s basketball, South Carolina is 28-12 in season openers, including a 4-2 mark under head coach Dawn Staley. The Gamecocks have lost just once in 14 season openers at home. Tonight is just the fourth time South Carolina has opened at home during Staley’s six seasons at the helm. South Carolina opened last season with a 99-29 win over Charleston Southern.