South Carolina beats No. 17 Kentucky 72-67
COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) - Brenton Williams scored 24 points for South Carolina, and Kentucky coach John Calipari was ejected midway through the second half as the Gamecocks held off the 17th-ranked Wildcats 72-67 on Saturday night,
South Carolina (11-18, 4-12 Southeastern Conference) led by three at halftime and hit six of its first eight shots in the second half to go up 48-32 with 14:13 left. Kentucky made a furious charge after Calipari was tossed, but came up short.
The Wildcats (21-8, 11-5) couldn't make a basket, going 15:38 with only one field goal - on a goaltending call. Calipari was ejected with his team down 12 after getting a second technical with 10:21 left. He walked out of the arena with his suit coat buttoned but his shirttail out.
Calipari's team responded with a 28-17 run and, after a three-point play by Julius Randle, Kentucky trailed 68-67 with 22 seconds left. But freshman Sindarius Thornwell hit two free throws for South Carolina, and Alex Poythress' attempt at a tying 3-pointer fell short.
South Carolina clinches Clemson series, 10-2
GREENVILLE, S.C. (AP) - Shortstop Marcus Mooney had three RBIs, starter Jack Wynkoop gave up two runs in more than six innings of work and South Carolina clinched its annual showdown series with Clemson with a 10-2 victory on Saturday.
The Gamecocks (9-0) built a five-run lead in the third inning and held off the Tigers (6-3) for a second consecutive game. South Carolina won 9-6 Friday night. The teams close the series Sunday at Clemson.
Wynkoop (3-0) scattered nine hits while Joel Seddon worked three innings of hitless relief to earn his third save of the season and second of the series.
Clemson cut the lead to 5-2 in the fifth on Chris Okey's RBI groundout, but could get no closer.
The Gamecocks have won 12 of the past 15 games with Clemson.
NC Central crushes SC State 86-44
DURHAM, N.C. (AP) - Jeremy Ingram scored 25 points and had five steals to help North Carolina Central crush South Carolina State 86-44 on Saturday.
Leading 40-24 at the break, North Carolina Central opened the second half with a 19-1 run before South Carolina State hit its first field goal of the half to make it 59-27 with 12:51 to play.
Ingram was 6 of 10 from the field, including five 3-pointers. He has 1,388 career points and moved to 10th all-time in school history. Jordan Parks added 21 points and Emanuel Chapman dished out nine assists for NCCU (23-5, 13-1 Mid-Eastern Athletic), which has a 15-game winning streak and earned at least a share of the MEAC regular season title with two games to play.
Jordan Smith scored 13 points and Darryl Palmer grabbed 11 rebounds to lead South Carolina State (9-18, 5-9), which scored its fewest points of the season.
The Citadel defeats Georgia Southern 80-63
CHARLESTON, S.C. (AP) - Matt Van Scyoc had 19 points and Marshall Harris III added 11 points and 12 assists to help The Citadel defeat Georgia Southern 80-63 on Saturday night.
The Citadel used a 14-2 run, including seven by Van Scyoc, to take a 69-57 lead with 3:46 remaining. Brian Holmes answered with a 3-pointer to pull Georgia Southern within 69-60 before The Citadel closed on an 11-3 run to cap the scoring.
Van Scyoc was 7 of 12 from the floor, including four 3-pointers, and Harris earned his first career double-double. Ashton Moore added 16 points for The Citadel (6-25, 2-14 Southern), which has won two straight since snapping a 17-game losing skid.
Tre Bussey tied a career-high with 29 points on 12-of-21 shooting with three steals to lead Georgia Southern (13-18, 6-10). Jelani Hewitt added 10 points for the Eagles, which dropped to seventh place in the conference.
Winthrop beats Presbyterian 82-60
ROCK HILL, S.C. (AP) - Chris Farmer scored a career-high 18 points and Joab Jerome added 17 as Winthrop defeated Presbyterian 82-60 on Saturday in a Big South regular-season finale.
Winthrop (17-12, 10-6) won 10 conference games for the first time since 2009-10.
Keon Moore added 11 and Keon Johnson 10 for the Eagles, who will be the No. 4 seed from the South Division for the conference tournament that begins Wednesday in Myrtle Beach, S.C. Presbyterian (6-25, 2-14) will be the No. 6 seed from the South.
Josh Downing scored 34 points for the Blue Hose, three points shy of his career high of 37 set earlier this season. Reggie Dillard added 12 points.
The Eagles shot 49.1 percent overall and made 11 of 20 3-point tries (55 percent), including 4 of 5 by Farmer.
Winthrop led by double digits from 17:27 of the second half.
UNCG rallies to beat Wofford 73-71
SPARTANBURG, S.C. (AP) - Kayel Locke scored 17 points, Tevon Saddler 14 and UNCG shot 78.3 percent in the second half to edge Wofford 73-71 on Saturday night in a Southern Conference finale.
The victory clinched the No. 6 seed for the Spartans (13-17, 6-9) in the conference tournament that begins on Friday in Asheville, N.C. They will play the 11th seed, The Citadel. That winner will play third-seeded Wofford (17-11, 11-4) in the second round.
Saddler's basket with 2:34 left gave UNCG a 73-66 lead with 2:34 remaining. Wofford got within two at 1:42 but neither team scored thereafter with the Terriers' Karl Cochran missing a final shot.
The Spartans trailed by nine at halftime but took the lead for good on RJ White's basket with 9:40 left.
White scored 13 points and Kyle Cain 10 for UNCG, which shot 61.7 percent.
Spencer Collins led Wofford with 15 points. Cochran added 12.
Coastal Carolina edges Charleston Southern 63-61
CONWAY, S.C. (AP) - Warren Gillis scored 21 points, including the game-winning jumper, to lift Coastal Carolina to a 63-61 victory over Charleston Southern and clinch the division title on Saturday.
After leading by as many as 10 points in the second half, Coastal Carolina (18-12, 11-5 Big South) saw its advantage slip in the final minute when Charleston Southern's Matt Kennedy hit a 3-pointer to briefly retake the lead 61-60. Gillis responded at the other end with the jumper to put the Chanticleers back on top for good, and Michael Enanga padded the lead by sinking 1 of 2 from the free throw line.
Elijah Wilson contributed 18 points and six rebounds for Coastal Carolina, which secured a first round bye in the Big South Championship and clinched at least a share of the conference's South Division title.
Matt Kennedy and Will Saunders led Charleston Southern (12-17, 6-10) with 16 points apiece.
Delaware tops College of Charleston 89-86
CHARLESTON, S.C. (AP) - Devon Saddler scored 24 points and Delaware kept its first-place status in the Colonial Athletic Association after knocking off College of Charleston 89-86 on Saturday.
Carl Baptiste had 21 points for Delaware (22-9, 14-2). Davon Usher added 16, Jarvis Threatt had 13 points, 13 boards and five steals and Kyle Anderson had 11 points.
Charleston (14-17, 6-10) used an 8-2 run at the end of the first half - including a 3-pointer by Nori Johnson with 3 seconds left - to lead 45-39 at the break.
Delaware stormed back in the second. A 13-4 run immediately after intermission gave the Fightin Blue Hens a one-point lead, and the teams traded buckets for the next couple of minutes.
Usher's layup, followed by Anderson's trey on the next possession, put Delaware up 74-70 with 5:35 left and the Hens made 6 of 6 free throws inside 30 seconds to seal the win.
LA Kings hold off Canes 3-1 for 4th straight win
LOS ANGELES (AP) - Alec Martinez scored the tiebreaking goal on a power play with 11:45 to play, Jonathan Quick made 24 saves, and the Los Angeles Kings beat the Carolina Hurricanes 3-1 Saturday for their third victory in four days since the Olympic break.
Mike Richards scored his second goal since Thanksgiving and Justin Williams added an empty-net goal for the Kings, who have roared out of the break with three wins in three cities in about 70 hours. Low-scoring Los Angeles put up eight goals at Colorado and Calgary before holding off the Hurricanes in the Kings' return to Staples Center.
Andrej Sekera scored and Anton Khudobin stopped 28 shots for the Hurricanes, who have lost three straight on their five-game road trip out of the break.
Busch wins third straight at PIR
AVONDALE, Ariz. (AP) - Kyle Busch became the first driver to win three straight Nationwide races at Phoenix International Raceway, dominating his way through a rain-shortened race Saturday.
Busch took an early lead and was still out front when the race was halted with 32 laps left in the 200-mile race around Phoenix's odd-shaped mile oval. After a delay of more than two hours, the race was called, giving Busch his series-record 64th Nationwide victory.
Kevin Harvick finished second and pole sitter Brad Keselowski was third, followed by Kyle Larson and Matt Kenseth.
Busch led 155 laps for his 10th overall victory at PIR and the fourth straight Nationwide win for Joe Gibbs Racing at the track. Joey Logano won for JGR in the 2012 fall PIR race.
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