Underclassmen power Gamecocks past Auburn

Chaunte'l Powell

It was a youth movement Thursday night as the No. 1 Gamecocks saw the majority of their underclassmen play significant minutes. South Carolina got it done, beating Auburn 79-53, to improve to 24-1 on the year and 11-0 in the SEC.

Aliyah Boston and Zia Cooke led the way with 13 points each, followed by Tyasha Harris with 12. Mikiah Herbert Harrigan and LeLe Grissett both chipped in 11.

The Gamecocks started off hot from behind the arc as Cooke and Brea Beal both hit two 3-pointers. Herbert Harrigan got in on the action hitting a three of her own and South Carolina went 1-for 1 from the field and 5-for-5 from three to take an early 14-4 lead.

USC cooled off a bit after that, missing its next five shots and allowing the Tigers (8-14, 2-8) to cut the lead to just four. Harris would get out in transition and hit a layup to stop the drought.

Destanni Henderson came into the game in the first quarter and become the fourth Gamecock of the night to hit a three. Her bucket made it a 22-13 game.

With youth comes mistakes and lineup that featured five underclassmen, including Laeticia Amihere, who returned from helping the Canadian national team qualify for the 2020 Summer Olympic, made its fair share. Amihere tried to get into a rhythm in her first game back and had mixed results. In eight minutes of action in the first half, the 6’4” redshirt-freshman finished with two points, two rebounds, a block and three turnovers. The Gamecocks went into the halftime break with a 42-23 lead and never looked back.

USC saw five different players hit a three in the contest as they finished a blistering 10-for-19 from behind the arc.

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Chaunte'l Powell