Gamecocks' comeback falls short against No. 11 Alabama
The 2021 season for South Carolina’s men’s basketball team has been somewhat of a rollercoaster ride, with many highs and many lows. Fresh off a 16-point loss to Mississippi State this past Saturday, the Gamecocks were hoping to regain their momentum on Tuesday night against No. 11 Alabama, yet the rollercoaster ride continued instead.
In a close, and competitive game, South Carolina fell to the Crimson Tide 81-78.
The Gamecocks started the game hot, jumping out to a 11-5 lead in the first five minutes thanks to a strong defensive effort. This defense forced the Tide to attempt more shots from deep, and for a time these shots weren’t falling. However, the shots soon began to fall and the Tide began to march back. Neither team could hold an advantage over the other during the first half, as the Gamecocks were able to match the Crimson Tide on offense and traded baskets for most of the first half. USC would finish the first half strong, trailing just 39-36 at the break.
The tight-competition continued in the second half, with both teams battling down to the last minute of play. As Alabama (16-5, 11-1 SEC) tried to pull away with the victory, the Gamecocks cut the Tide’s lead to two, courtesy of a 3-pointer from AJ Lawson, with just 53 seconds left.
Alabama would avoid the upset with made free throws and escape Colonial Life Arena with the four-point win.
Lawson led the Gamecocks with a game-high 21 points and added six rebounds and an assist. Keyshawn Bryant also added 16 points off the bench for South Carolina.
Now with back-to-back losses, South Carolina (5-8, 3-6 SEC) will look to bounce-back on Saturday when they host Ole Miss at 6 p.m.