Published: Mon, March 20, 2017
Medicine | By Megan Pierce

NCAA scores: SC upsets Duke

NCAA scores: SC upsets Duke

The Gamecocks come into Sunday's game flying high, winning the first NCAA Tournament game in the last 44 years for the program.

The Ducks did pull down key offensive rebounds in crunch time.

Tip-off between ASU and SC will be at 4 p.m. PST and can be seen on ESPN. The Blue Devils, with all their firepower, couldn't keep up with the Gamecocks. In 2014, Martin signed five-star Columbia native PJ Dozier, and past year he briefly brought the Gamecocks back to the top 25 for the first time in more than a decade before falling just barely on the wrong side of the tournament bubble with a school-record-tying 25 wins.

Ruthy Hebard (14.8 points, 8.5 rebounds), Sabrina Ionescu (14.4 points, 6.6 rebounds) and Lexi Bando (10.3 points, 68 treys) have paced OR on the season. "I've never experienced an injury like this in the NCAA Tournament, and I've been to a lot of them". The junior guard had gone just 2 of 9 over his two previous games, but shot 10 for 12 on his biggest stage yet. This group was more talented than the 2014 team that lost to Mercer in the round of 64 and it was better than the 2012 team that was done in by C.J. McCollum and Lehigh in their first NCAA tournament game. He put the exclamation point on his strong second half with a drive down the middle of the lane and powerful one-handed dunk with 2:05 remaining. "That's how I see it", said Silva, who scored 13 of his 17 points in the second half. They forced 18 turnovers and held Duke stars Luke Kennard and Grayson Allen to a combined 6-of-19 shooting from the field.

The win ensures top seeds will remain ideal since the tournament expanded, with the schools now 132-0 against No. 16 seeds. Nick Ward also finished in double figures with 13 points and Joshua Langford had 10 for the Spartans.

This will be the first meeting in the NCAA tourney between the teams, who spent 20 years as rivals in the ACC.

Duke also features a 17-0 record at home this season, including wins over six ranked opponents. Their defeat ended a five-game winning streak that began with a four-wins-in-four-days run to win the ACC Tournament.

Duke leads the all-time series with SC by 57-19.

So not only was I wrong in predicting only one SEC team would make the Sweet 16, but the Gamecocks proved to me and many others they deserved a spot in this year's tournament.

PLAYER TO WATCH: The first SC player to win the SEC Player of the Year Award, guard Sindarius Thornwell played like it in Friday's tournament opener against Marquette. This year, they got the bid, and they got the handsome draw, where they didn't have to travel far, and their fans could see them play, and I think it's just great.

Senior Amile Jefferson can't think of a player the 6-foot-5 guard compares to, even with five years of experience in the ACC, which is perceived by most as college basketball's toughest conference. Against an unmatched talent, who leads a team that is more than just a one-man threat Krzyzewski says, it will be immeasurably critical. And even this year, we had three last year... This is a huge advantage to the team who has a 14-1 record at home and the highest game attendance of any team. And it's safe to say what comes next is unexpected - by most, at least.

Kentucky knew it would have a battle on its hands with No. 10 seed Wichita State in the second round of the South Region on Sunday. The Gamecocks started 5-for-9 (56 percent) and MU was 4-for-6 (67 percent) to open the half.

Appropriately, Duke wasn't at full strength for this game, not that it would've much mattered.

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