Wilson leads No. 4 South Carolina to 61-59 win over Aggies

By  | 

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) - A'ja Wilson scored 25 points, including the go-ahead basket with 1.3 seconds left, as No. 4 South Carolina rallied from 11 points down in the final 13 minutes to upend No. 22 Texas A&M 61-59 to open Southeastern Conference play Sunday.

The Gamecocks (12-1) looked like they were finished as the Aggies (11-4) took a 47-36 lead on Chennedy Carter's 3-pointer with 2:32 to play in the third quarter. But South Carolina, behind their 6-foot-5 All-American in Wilson, used a 15-2 spurt to go up 51-49.

Texas A&M was not done. Danni Williams' jumper with 1:05 to go gave the Aggies a final lead, 59-57, before Wilson tied things with a short jumper in the lane.

After two bad turnovers by the Aggies - a 10-second call and a double-dribble violation by Williams' as she tried to gather in the ball - Wilson came through once more. She drove across the lane and banked in a short basket for the winning points.

Carter finished with 36 points - 19 of those in the third quarter - but was clearly out of gas as the game wound down. She was 1 of 7 in the final period.

Doniyah Cliney had a career high 16 points and Wilson added 15 rebounds, four assists and three blocks as the Gamecocks won their fifth straight over Texas A&M.

THE BIG PICTURE

Texas A&M: The Aggies have relied on Carter to make things happen this season. She pushed the issue early, forcing several missed shots as she tried to penetrate South Carolina's tall, long defenders. Carter was 6 of 18 in the opening half. The freshman will need to play under control if Texas A&M wants to compete in the SEC this season.

South Carolina: The Gamecocks are a different team with Wilson on the bench. South Carolina was in control and cruising, ahead 25-13 with Wilson dominating underneath. Once she picked up her second foul midway through the second quarter, the Gamecocks offense went with her. South Carolina managed just two points in the last eight minutes before the half.

UP NEXT

Texas A&M heads home to face Kentucky on Thursday night.

South Carolina plays its first SEC road game at Ole Miss on Thursday night.

QUICKIE NOTES
Texas A&M

· The Aggies fall to 11-4 on the season and 0-1 in SEC play. The Gamecocks are now 12-1 on the season and 1-0 in SEC play

· Texas A&M is now 5-1 in SEC openers

· Texas A&M is 0-4 against teams in the AP Top 25 this season

· Texas A&M head coach Gary Blair is 342-145 in 15 seasons at Texas A&M and 750-308 in his Hall of Fame career. He ranks seventh among active coaches and 11th all-time in career wins.

· Six of the eight games in the series, which started in 2013, have been decided by nine-or-fewer points

Chennedy Carter

· Is the fifth Texas A&M player to have three 30+ point games in her career, joining Danielle Adams (8, 2009-11), Jaynetta Saunders (1999-01, 7), Lisa Langston (1982-86, 4) and Lisa Branch (1992-96, 3)

· Averaging 37.3 points in true road games

· This is the second-most points scored by a Texas A&M freshman in a single-game, trailing only her own 46-point effort at Southern California (Dec. 15)

· Scored 30+ points for the third time in her career, which have come in all three of her true road games

· Scored 20+ points for the second straight game and the seventh time in her 15-game career

· Scored in double figures for the 15th straight game. She is the first Texas A&M freshman to score 10+ points in each of her first 15 games.

· Her 37 Field Goal Attempts were the most for a Division I player this season.

Danni Williams

· Scored 10+ points for the 13th time this season and the 44th time in her career

Anriel Howard

· Had 10+ rebounds for the 10th straight game and 14th time this season

· Has had at least nine rebounds every game this season