By: John Dunn
The All Vol Call in Show
If this matchup were a dessert, it would be an orange turnover. However, Tennessee found a way to battle back and take care of business against South Carolina, 56-55.
Led by John Fulkerson with 15 points and 10 rebounds, the Vols were able to overcome a gritty defensive effort from South Carolina.
Behind a 25% shooting effort in the first half, Tennessee trailed South Carolina by one, 26-25. There were a combined 22 turnovers in the first half.
The Gamecocks didn’t play much better in the first half, with a sub-par 34% effort on offense themselves.
As play resumed in the second half, each team traded buckets before Tennessee was able to tie the game at 41-41 and regain the lead with 9:53 remaining on two free throws from Jordan Bowden.
With each team playing great interior defense, both struggled to get much offense going in the paint. However, Kotsar continued to be a dominant presence inside for the Gamecocks by pulling down a multitude of offensive rebounds.
South Carolina pulled back to within three with less than a minute remaining at 56-53 after a Kotsar free throw.
On the ensuing play, Santiago Vescovi turned the ball over with the shot clock under 10 seconds, allowing Lawson to connect on a pair of free throws for the Gamecocks, drawing the score to 56-55 with under 30 seconds remaining.
After a deep three point show from Bowden with time dwindling, a 50/50 call on an out-of-bounds ball allowed possession to be retained by Tennessee.
With time running out, the Vols had a sloppy possession on the ensuing in-bounds play, allowing South Carolina to bring the ball up court.
Fulkerson stepped in front of Lawson and an offensive foul was called, giving Tennessee the ball back, leading by one, with 1.4 seconds remaining.
After a clean pass in-bounds, Tennessee had secured a one-point victory and their second SEC victory of the season.
With the victory, the Vols improved to 10-5 (2-1).