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March 13, 2016

COLUMBIA, S.C. – The South Carolina men’s basketball team will host High Point (21-10) on Tuesday in the opening round of the 2016 National Invitation Tournament at Colonial Life Arena. Tuesday’s matchup will be broadcast on ESPNU and will tip at 7 p.m. ET. South Carolina’s appearance in the NIT marks the Gamecocks’ first postseason appearance since the 2008-09 campaign. The Gamecocks have earned a No. 1 seed in the NIT after posting a 24-8 record this season, with those 24 wins setting a regular-season record for victories. Carolina will look to match the school record for wins in a season on Tuesday versus the Panthers. The winner of the Carolina versus High Point matchup will face the winner of No. 4 seed Georgia Tech versus fifth-seeded Houston.

Tuesday’s meeting marks the first all-time between the Gamecocks and Panthers. High Point claimed a share of the 2015-16 Big South regular-season title and became one of just three programs ever to win four-straight Big South regular-season championships. Since the start of the 2012-13 campaign, HPU leads the Big South in league wins with 50. Redshirt-senior John Brown was named the Big South Player and Big South Defensive Player of the Year this season. The Panthers are led by former Gamecock assistant, Scott

The Gamecocks are one of four No. 1 seeds, joined on the line by Monmouth, St. Bonaventure and Valparaiso. First-round games will be played March 15 and 16, second-round action will be March 17-21 and the quarterfinals on March 22-23 at campus sites. The semifinals and NIT finals will be held at Madison Square Garden, March 29-31.

South Carolina’s appearance in the NIT is its 12th all-time, and the first since 2009. South Carolina owns an all-time record of 21-9 in the NIT and has won the event twice (2005, 2006) and finished as the tournament’s runner-up in 2002.

South Carolina concluded an historic regular season on March 5 with a 76-61 win on the road at Arkansas. That victory set the school record for regular-season wins at 24. The Gamecocks began the season 15-0, their best start since the 1933-34 campaign, and the 24 wins are the most since the 1996-97 squad also posted 24 victories. In addition, South Carolina’s 11 SEC wins marked the most since 1998, match the second-most ever by a Carolina team and mark just the fourth time that the Gamecocks have had double-digit SEC wins in their 25 years in the league. The Gamecocks suffered a one-point loss in the SEC Tournament Quarterfinals to Georgia last Friday.

Tickets for the NIT are on sale for $15 with all seating general admission. Student tickets are available for $4. Gamecock Club members and Gamecock season ticket holders should keep an eye on their email for ticket information.

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