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March 12, 2015

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – South Carolina posted a 63-54 victory over 14th-seed Missouri on Wednesday night to advance to tonight’s second-round matchup vs. sixth-seeded Ole Miss. The Rebels won the only regular-season meeting between the two schools, 65-49 on Jan. 10. Thursday’s contest will be broadcast on the SEC Network with Dave Neal (pxp), Darrin GAME INFORMATION
Game Date: Thursday, March 12, 2015
Game Time: 9:30 p.m. ET
Arena: Bridgestone Arena (19,395)
Broadcast: SEC Network/WatchESPN/ESPN3
Talent: Dave Neal (pxp), Darrin Radio: Gamecock Radio Network
Talent: Andy Demetra (pxp), Casey Manning (analyst)
Sirius: 93; XM: 190
Series: Ole Miss leads 18-15
Last Meeting: 65-49 Ole Miss win, Jan. 10, 2015, in Oxford, Miss.

| Tickets | Game Notes | @GamecockMBB | SEC Tournament Bracket (printable)

– South Carolina is in its 107th season of varsity basketball in 2014-15.
– The Gamecocks are led by third-year head coach Frank Martin. His associate head coach is Matt Figger, his assistant coaches are Perry Clark and Lamont Evans, and his director of operations is Andy Assaley.
– The 11th-seeded Gamecocks posted a 63-54 victory over Missouri on Wednesday night in the opening round of the 2015 SEC Tournament behind 18 points from sophomore guard Sindarius Thornwell. Thornwell hit a season high, and matched a career high with four made 3s in the contest. The Gamecock defense allowed the Tigers to hit just 36.0% (18-50) from the field, compared to a solid effort from Carolina, connecting on 45.7% (21-46) in the win.
– The Gamecocks are 3-4 all-time vs. Ole Miss in SEC Tournament play. Thursday’s matchup will be the first in the postseason event between the two schools since 2011 when the Rebels posted a 66-55 victory. That contest was played in Atlanta at the Georgia Dome.
– South Carolina has won three of its last four games – vs. Mississippi State (Feb. 28), at Tennessee (March 7) and vs. Missouri (March 11). The loss in the stretch came against 18th-ranked Arkansas (March 5).
– Sophomore forward Reggie Theus Jr. will not be available for games at the SEC Tournament due to a concussion.
– In the Jan. 10 matchup vs. the Rebels, the Gamecocks hit just 36.7% (18-49) from the field. Carolina out-scored Ole Miss 26-12 in the paint, but the Rebels held a 17-13 edge in points off of turnovers, and also a 10-4 upperhand in second-chance points.
– The Gamecocks concluded the regular season with an 11-point victory on the road at Tennessee on March 7. The win, Carolina’s first in Knoxville since the 2002 campaign, broke a 15-game Volunteer win streak in the series between the two schools. Four Gamecocks recorded double-figures in that contest, including junior forward Michael Carrera who posted team highs with 14 points and seven rebounds. Senior guard Tyrone Johnson and sophomore guard Duane Notice each dished a team high five assists.
– South Carolina’s six SEC wins in 2015 marked the most since the 2010 campaign (also six).
– South Carolina owns a 19-23 (.452) all-time record in the SEC Tournament, which includes two victories last season at the event in Atlanta. The first-round win versus Auburn in 2014 marked Carolina’s first tourney win since the 2008 campaign, and with its second-round win over Arkansas, Carolina clinched multiple tournament wins for the first time since 2006.
– After Wednesday’s win vs. Missouri, the Gamecocks own an 1-2 record all-time in SEC Tournament games played at Bridgestone Arena, and a 5-4 mark in games played in Nashville (Carolina is 4-2 in games played at the Sommet Center). The Tournament was last held in the Music City in 2013.
– The Gamecocks are 3-2 in netural site games this season after the win vs. Missouri on Wednesday. Carolina was 1-2 in three games at the Charleston Classic in late November, posting a win vs. Cornell, and suffering losses to Charlotte and Akron. South Carolina rebounded with an impressive 64-60 upset win over then-No. 9 Iowa State at the Barclays Center on Jan. 3 in the non-conference finale.

The Rebels are 20-11 this season and finished the SEC campaign with an 11-7 record. Entering Tournament play, Ole Miss has lost three of its last four games, including an 86-77 loss to Vanderbilt in the regular-season finale at home last Saturday. Junior guard Stefan Moody ranks among SEC leaders with 16.6 points per game this season. Moody’s 18.6 points per SEC game were tied for a league high. He was named to the All-SEC First Team earlier this week. Senior guard Jarvis Summers also provides double figures with 12.3 points per outing, while his 4.7 assists per game are also among league leaders. As a team, Ole Miss ranks third in the nation in free throw percentage, hitting 77.7 percent on the year. Moody is stellar from the line, as he has hit 145-of-159 attempts (91.2%) from the charity stripe. The Rebels are led by head coach Andy Kennedy in his ninth season.

Ole Miss owns an 18-15 upperhand in the all-time series with the Gamecocks and has won four of the last five meetings, including three straight. The series is tied at 4-4 in neutral site games.

64.4 – South Carolina averages 64.4 points per game in neutral site matchups this season. Sophomore guard Sindarius Thornwell leads the Gamecocks with 15.6 points per game in those contests.
61.9% – The Gamecocks hit 61.9% from the field in the first half at Tennesse on March 7, connecting on 13-of-21 attempts. It marked the highest mark in a half for Carolina since hitting 62.5% (15-24) in the second half vs. Longwood in the 2013-14 season opener.
14-8 – South Carolina is 14-8 this season when forcing at least 12 turnovers.
73.8% – South Carolina ranks second in the SEC (overall games), hitting 73.8% (461-625) from the free throw line this season. That number currently ranks tied for second all-time in Carolina history. The 1971 squad holds the school record, as it hit 74.3% (635-855) from the charity stripe.
18 – Junior forward Laimonas Chatkevicius posted a career high 18 points at Alabama on Feb. 24 and hit the same mark on Feb. 28 vs. Mississippi State. He hit 7-of-12 attempts from the floor and was a perfect 4-of-4 at the free throw line vs. the Crimson Tide, and connected on 8-of-13 attempts from the floor vs. the Bulldogs.
4th – South Carolina ranks fourth in the SEC in average home attendance, as an average of 11,520 fans attend Carolina home games this season.
61.7 – South Carolina ranks third in scoring defense in the SEC (overall games), as opponents average just 61.7 points per game.
21 – Sophomore guard Sindarius Thornwell has scored in double figures 21 times this season, which is a team high.
23 – Sophomore guard Duane Notice scored a then-career high 23 points vs. Auburn in the 2014 SEC Tournament. In three games last season at the event, Notice averaged 14.0 points per game.

The winner of the South Carolina vs. Ole Miss contest on Thursday will advance to play third-seeded Georgia on Friday night in the quarterfinals of the SEC Tournament. That contest will be broadcast on the SEC Network with a tip time of approximately 9:30 p.m. ET. The Gamecocks swept the season series vs. the Bulldogs, posting a 67-50 home win on Jan. 31, and a 64-58 victory at Stegeman Coliseum on Feb. 17.