On Saturday, Lamont Paris and his South Carolina basketball squad went on the road and smacked Arkansas for just the program's 6th win ever in Fayetteville. The Gamecocks never trailed and won by a much-more-lopsided-than-the-score final margin of 77-64.
Myles Stute will be out for at least two weeks after suffering a shoulder injury as the result of a dirty play against Georgia, so Zach Davis got the start and played well. Davis and guards Ta'Lon Cooper and Meechie Johnson were excellent defensively in the game, and the Gamecocks' post players had really nice showings in the game.
BJ Mack was the team's best overall player for the game, scoring an efficient 18 points and bringing down 9 rebounds. He also dished out 3 assists and had 0 turnovers. Collin Murray-Boyles continues to have good games in the starting lineup, posting an 11-point, 4-rebound, 2-assist, 1-block performance in which he improved upon his 4-10 free throw effort earlier in the week by going 3-3.
The frontcourt backups had really good efforts on Saturday as Josh Gray and Stephen Clark had 7 points, 8 rebounds, and 3 assists in just 22 combined minutes. They also physically pushed around the Arkansas frontline (along with Mack and Murray-Boyles).
The game was never particularly close as the Gamecocks shot out to a 10-4 early lead and never looked back. The scoring margin was never closer than 7 points after BJ Mack hit back-to-back 3-pointers in the 1st half, and USC led by double-digits almost the whole game from that point.
Meechie Johnson didn't have his best game as a scorer, but point guard Ta'Lon Cooper was excellent (11 points on 4-5 shooting, 4 rebounds, 5 assists, and just 1 turnover). It was possibly the best overall team performance of the 2023-2024 season, and after Tuesday's loss to the Georgia Bulldogs, the impressive 13-point victory keeps Carolina in the current NCAA Tournament conversation.