Preview: LSU at South Carolina
Updated On: Jan 09 2014 11:17:34 PM CST
South Carolina hosts LSU on Saturday in a matchup of two teams that did not play well in their SEC openers this week. The Tigers trailed by double digits most of the way in a 68-50 home loss to Tennessee on Tuesday, leading LSU coach Johnny Jones to tell reporters, "I don't think we competed at the level that we needed to have an opportunity or a chance." South Carolina committed seven turnovers in its first 10 possessions en route to a 74-58 defeat at No. 11 Florida on Wednesday. The Tigers opened December with five consecutive victories, but have dropped two in a row. South Carolina had a four-game winning streak snapped with the Florida loss, and plays three of its next four away from home. LSU holds opponents to 38.1 percent shooting from the field, second-best in the SEC, and faces a South Carolina offense that is last in the conference in shooting (43.4 percent).TV: 1:30 p.m. ET, SEC Network, ESPN3ABOUT LSU (9-4, 0-1 SEC): Freshman Jordan Mickey continues to make a big impact, averaging 14.1 points and 3.7 blocks per contest after leading the Tigers with 14 points and five blocks against the Volunteers. Johnny O'Bryant III leads LSU in scoring (14.3), but was held to 11 Tuesday as the Tigers scored 28 points below their season average. The Tigers have shot below 39 percent from the field in two of their past three games.ABOUT SOUTH CAROLINA (7-7, 0-1): The Gamecocks have struggled offensively against strong teams, scoring 57 points against Clemson, 52 against Oklahoma State and 58 against the Gators. Tyrone Johnson leads three players averaging double figures in scoring at 11.7 points and is fourth in the SEC in assists at 3.6. The Gamecocks allowed Florida to hit 70 percent of its shots in the second half Wednesday and 57.8 percent for the night.TIP-INS1. Mickey and O'Bryant are tied for seventh in the SEC in rebounding at 7.5.2. South Carolina freshman Sindarius Thornwell scored 10 points against Florida, his eighth double-figure output of the season.3. The Gamecocks lead the series 15-13, but the Tigers have won two of the past three matchups and seven of the last 11.PREDICTION: LSU 69, South Carolina 62
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