South Carolina Basketball: 3 thumbs up, 3 thumbs down from Elite Eight win over OSU

South Carolina basketball outlasted Oregon State in a physical Elite Eight battle, earning yet another trip to the Final Four.

South Carolina basketball forward Ashlyn Watkins "stealing" a block opportunity from guard MiLaysia Fulwiley in the Gamecocks' win over the Oregon State Beavers
South Carolina basketball forward Ashlyn Watkins "stealing" a block opportunity from guard MiLaysia Fulwiley in the Gamecocks' win over the Oregon State Beavers / Gregory Fisher-USA TODAY Sports
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South Carolina basketball fans had to sweat a little bit (again), but, on Sunday, they witnessed their favorite team punch its ticket to the Final Four for the fourth year in a row. The Gamecocks knocked off the Oregon State Beavers in a game that was loaded with paint presences that weren't afraid to play with physicality.

The officiating was a talking point in this game as the Gamecocks received a favorable whistle in the 1st half, and the Beavers got more of the iffy calls to go their way in the 2nd. The total number of fouls wasn't the issue, but inconsistency of the fouls and which plays were deemed "over the line" were headscratching.

In the end, though, South Carolina did what South Carolina does. USC rebounded well, winning the battle on the boards 51 to 37, and they played solid defense, holding the Beavers to 36.4% shooting from the floor and 32% from the perimeter.

Oregon State battled, and a pretty good shooting effort from outside in the 1st half had Gamecock fans worried that an Indiana-esque onslaught was coming. However, Raven Johnson and company stifled the 3-point barrage in the 2nd half, allowing USC to control the game.

Ashlyn Watkins came off the bench and was much better in this game, leading both teams in rebounding and blocked shots. She seemingly was everywhere on defense and in the rebounding game, and her team fed off of her energy. Kamilla Cardoso was really good early and won the battle again against another fellow All-American. Raegan Beers scored more points, but it was Cardoso who seemed to have a bigger impact on the game.

Raven Johnson and Tessa Johnson were really good in the 2nd half. Tessa Johnson wound up leading the Gamecocks with 15 points, and players like MiLaysia Fulwiley, Sania Feagin, and Bree Hall had big moments for Dawn Staley's team in the 70-58 victory.

533. Final. 58. 516. South Carolina Basketball vs. Oregon State Beavers. 70

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