No. 5 South Carolina women rally past No. 10 Kentucky 75-70
AP Sports Writer
LEXINGTON, Ky. (AP) Destanni Henderson scored 22 points and Aliyah Boston added 20, including 10 in the third quarter to put No. 5 South Carolina ahead to stay as the Gamecocks rallied for a 75-70 victory over No. 10 Kentucky on Sunday night.
The Gamecocks trailed 41-32 at halftime and 54-46 late in the third before closing the quarter with an 11-2 run, including five by Boston, for their first lead since the opening minutes.
Boston and Henderson then added four points each during an 12-2 spurt to open the fourth that helped withstand Kentucky’s late rally.
Chasity Patterson scored eight consecutive points to get Kentucky within 69-68. LeLe Grissett answered with a baseline drive and Boston made a layup before Zia Cooke sealed it with two free throws with 10.3 seconds remaining.
First-place South Carolina (8-1, 3-0 Southeastern Conference) won its fifth in a row just days after postponing a game against Georgia because of a positive coronavirus test in the program.
Rhyne Howard had 32 points and Patterson and Dre’Una Edwards 12 each for the Wildcats (9-3, 2-2 SEC), who lost their second consecutive game in a four-game stretch against top 15 opponents.
After sitting for most of the first half with a pair of early fouls, sophomore Aliyah Boston locked in after the break scoring 10 points in the third to help Carolina regain the lead ahead of the fourth quarter. Boston scored 16 of her 20 points in the second half and pulled down 12 rebounds to earn her fourth double-double of the season and second since conference play started.
Carolina once again used its prowess on the glass to out-rebound Kentucky, 46-31, including a 17-15 advantage on the offensive side. Though the Gamecocks only had two more offensive boards than the Wildcats, the Garnet and Black made the most of those opportunities with a 23-10 edge in second chance points.
- South Carolina dominated Kentucky in the paint, outscoring the Wildcats 56-34.
- The Gamecocks had a 20-point scorer for the fourth time in as many games, and a pair of 20-point scorers for the second time in three conference games.
- Junior Destanni Henderson was steady all night for Carolina, leading the team in scoring for the second straight game with 22 points tonight in addition to her eight rebounds.
- Sophomore Aliyah Boston fueled the Carolina rally in the second half, scoring 10 of her 20 points in the third quarter and finishing the game with her fourth double-double of the season after pulling down 12 rebounds. Her offense sparked the rally, but her block of a Rhyne Howard shot with 51 seconds remaining and the Gamecocks leading by three showed how her defense is just as important as her offense.
- Sophomore Laeticia Amihere kept the Garnet and Black in the thick of things with eight first-half points on her way to 10 for the game.
The No. 5/4 Gamecocks (8-1, 3-0 SEC) are set for a trip to Nashville to face Vanderbilt on Thursday, Jan. 14. Tipoff is set for 8 p.m. ET with the game airing on SEC Network+.
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