South Carolina Basketball: 3 thumbs up, 3 thumbs down from blowout over East Carolina

South Carolina basketball moved to 12-0 with a road win over East Carolina on Saturday.

South Carolina basketball guard Raven Johnson
South Carolina basketball guard Raven Johnson / Darren Yamashita-USA TODAY Sports
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South Carolina Basketball vs. East Carolina
Thumbs Up 1: Smothering Defense

On a day when the offense wasn't spectacular, the Gamecocks made sure to make up for it on the other end of the floor. East Carolina shot comically-low numbers against the Carolina D as they couldn't break the 20% efficiency mark from the floor or from the 3-point line.

Perhaps even more impressively, they did it without blocking a ton of shots. 8 rejections is a good number, but to hold a team to 19.4% shooting with a bunch of good closeouts and team defensive rotations is very impressive.

South Carolina Basketball vs. East Carolina
Thumbs Up 2: Aggressive Rebounding

The Gamecocks' rebounding effort was high on Saturday. Against an active ECU team, Carolina won the battle on the boards 58-42 despite losing some unlucky long rebounds to the Pirates on their offensive end.

Some of the more impressive individual rebounding numbers from the game included Kamilla Cardoso's 10 rebounds in 20 minutes, Chloe Kitts' 10 in 19, MiLaysia Fulwiley's 9 in 24, Raven Johnson's 7 in 22, and Ashlyn Watkins' 5 in 12. If USC consistently attacks the glass with that type of intensity (including cleaning up almost 50% of their misses), they will be hard to beat in SEC play.

South Carolina Basketball vs. East Carolina
Thumbs Up 3: Cleaning Up the Turnovers

An 11-turnover game isn't some elite showing. However, with the way things have gone recently for South Carolina basketball, it is a step in the right direction. Limiting the giveaways, especially on the road against a tough-minded opponent, is an encouraging sign as the calendar turns to January and the SEC schedule.

No Gamecock had more than 2 turnovers and high usage players Raven Johnson and Kamilla Cardoso didn't lose the basketball all game over a combined 42 minutes. The lower turnover number also meant that the Pirates didn't get many free points off of giveaways as ECU scored just 5 points off of turnovers for the game.