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Gamecocks Open SEC Action at Home Thursday
Gamecocks Open SEC Action at Home Thursday
Women's Basketball  . 

Gamecocks Open SEC Action at Home Thursday

COLUMBIA, S.C. – No. 1/1 South Carolina opens SEC play Thursday night at Colonial Life Arena. Tipoff against Texas A&M is set for 7 p.m. with the game airing on SEC Network.

 

Traffic Advisory
Fans, please be aware of traffic pattern changes around the arena. More info at: https://gamecocksonline.com/news/2022/12/09/changes-to-colonial-life-arena-traffic-patterns/

#1 South Carolina Gamecocks
#1 South Carolina Gamecocks
vs.
Texas A&M Aggies
Texas A&M Aggies
Columbia, S.C.

The Texas A&M Series
South Carolina is 9-4 against Texas A&M since the series began when the Aggies joined the SEC for the 2012-13 season. The Gamecocks lost that series opener at home but have won all five meetings in Columbia since then. South Carolina has won nine of the last 10 outings.

South Carolina swept the Aggies in 2021-22, avenging an eight-point loss in College Station to close out the 2020-21 season and give Texas A&M its first SEC regular-season title.

By the Numbers

2 – Only two teams have scored 60 or more points against South Carolina this season, helping it lead the nation in opponent ppg (43.8).

27 – The Gamecocks’ 27 consecutive weeks at No. 1 in the AP Poll is the fifth-longest streak in that poll’s history.

47.6 – South Carolina is shooting 47.6 percent from the field this season to rank 16th in the nation

Gamecock Notables

  • South Carolina enters its 32nd SEC campaign having won the league’s regular-season title in seven of the last nine seasons. The Gamecocks finished second in the other two seasons in that stretch. The 2022 SEC champs were picked by the media and league coaches to repeat in 2023.

  • South Carolina is 9-5 in SEC openers under Staley.

  • This year’s true-senior class (2019 signees) has won the SEC twice amassing a 45-3 record in that stretch.

  • Head coach Dawn Staley is the SEC’s active wins leader with 167 conference victories in her first 14 seasons at South Carolina. That number ranks her third all-time among SEC head coaches with her 11.93 SEC wins per season leading the league and her .752 winning percentage ranking second to Pat Summitt.

  • With an NCAA-leading 10.3 blocked shots per game, South Carolina has blocked 15.2 percent of its opponents’ field goal attempts, including 25.0 percent of 2-point field goal attempts (1st in the nation).

  • The Gamecocks have rebounded 49.7 percent of their own missed shots, ranking second in the nation. South Carolina’s 18.8 offensive rebounds per game are second in the nation and have yielded 19.5 second-chance points per game.

  • Reigning National Player of the Year Aliyah Boston is sixth in the nation with eight double-doubles this season while playing just 23.4 minutes per game. Her season averages rise to 16.0 ppg, 12.0 rpg against ranked teams.

  • Leading scorer Zia Cooke (14.1 ppg, 17th in SEC) has been on fire in the last five games – 17.0 ppg, 48.1 percent shooting, 3.0 apg.

  • Kamilla Cardoso is 15th in the nation in offensive rebounding with 4.00 per game and she scores on 40.9 percent of those boards. Her 9.3 points per game include 3.3 points per game off putbacks.

Aliyah Boston
4

Aliyah Boston

Forward

6'5"  /  Senior

Zia Cooke
1

Zia Cooke

Guard

5'9"  /  Senior

Brea Beal
12

Brea Beal

Guard

6'1"  /  Senior

Victaria Saxton
5

Victaria Saxton

Forward

6'2"  /  Senior

Kierra Fletcher
41

Kierra Fletcher

Guard

5'9"  /  Graduate Student

Raven Johnson
25

Raven Johnson

Guard

5'8"  /  Redshirt Freshman

Bree Hall
23

Bree Hall

Guard

6'0"  /  Sophomore

Kamilla Cardoso
10

Kamilla Cardoso

Center

6'7"  /  Junior

Opponent Files
The Gamecocks’ schedule includes six games against teams currently ranked in both national polls – at #2/2 Stanford (W, 76-71), at #8/8 UConn (Feb. 5), vs. #9/9 LSU (Feb. 12), vs. #15/17 UCLA (W, 73-64) at #17/18 Maryland (W, 81-56) and vs. #24/23 Arkansas (Jan. 22).

Three other opponents on the Gamecocks’ schedule are receiving votes in at least one poll – Alabama, Florida, South Dakota State.

South Carolina’s three wins over ranked opponents are tied for the most in the nation this season.

 

The Staley File
In her 22nd season as a head coach, Dawn Staley has a .748 (550-185) winning percentage, which ranks 11th in the nation among active head coaches with at least 10 seasons of experience and ninth among those with at least 20 years in the position. The unanimous 2020 National Coach of the Year, she became the first person to win both a Naismith Player of the Year Trophy and a Naismith Coach of the Year Trophy and the first Black head coach to win multiple national championships in men’s or women’s basketball.

In her 15th season leading the Gamecocks, Staley is the program’s all-time winningest coach (378) with a program-record 11 postseason appearances (10 NCAA/1 WNIT). She accounts for all four  of the Gamecocks’ Final Four appearances (2015, 2017, 2021, 2022) and the first NCAA National Championship in program history (2017).

After claiming six SEC regular-season titles, Staley has won 167 SEC games, the most among active league coaches and third all-time – trailing just Women’s Basketball Hall of Fame inductees Andy Landers (Georgia, 273) and Pat Summitt (Tennessee, 306). Her 11.9 SEC wins average is the best in league history among coaches with more than one year in the league, and her .752 SEC winning percentage (167-55) is second only to Summitt (.874) in league history.