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Weatherspoons lead Bulldogs to 81-76 victory over South Carolina

The Bulldogs won an SEC road game — and consecutive league games — for the first time all season.

Posted: Jan 31, 2018 10:52 PM

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — When Mississippi State needed help at South Carolina, there was always a Weatherspoon there to provide it.


Quinndary Weatherspoon scored 14 of his 18 points in the second half while young brother Nick Weatherspoon scored 17 points to lead the Bulldogs to an 81-76 victory at South Carolina on Wednesday night.

Quinndary Weatherspoon twice accounted for three points after the Gamecocks cut a nine-point lead to one, the first time when he was fouled behind the arc and made all three free throws, the last time on a more traditional shot that extended Mississippi State's lead to 73-69 with less than five minutes left.

"I had a slow first half and I just wanted to come out and play as hard as I could to get a win," Quinndary Weatherspoon said.

Mississippi State coach Ben Howland said Weatherspoon, a 6-foot-4 junior, is not rushing things, and letting the game come to him. "That's a sign," Howland said, "of a guy who's matured."

Although, it's not so bad to play freshman Nick Weatherspoon, who had 13 points in the opening half including a driving layup right before the half that sent the Bulldogs (16-6, 4-5 Southeastern Conference) into the locker up by one instead of trailing.

"Can't say enough great things about little brother because he's a good player," Howland said.

The Bulldogs won an SEC road game — and consecutive league games — for the first time all season. Mississippi State also ended a four-game losing streak at South Carolina (13-9, 4-5), which dated back to 2012.

The Weatherspoons were a big reason why.

Quinndary Weatherspoon caught fire after the break, hitting four of six shots including two from behind the arc. He had seven points in an 18-8 run midway through the period as Mississippi State built a 57-48 lead.

"That's just a good player doing what good players do," Gamecocks coach Frank Martin said.

The Gamecocks rallied back and cut the lead to a point several times, the last one on Hassani Gravett's driving layup with 4:50 to go. But Quinndary Weathspoon answered with a 3-pointer and the Gamecocks could not get closer than three points the rest of the way.

Wesley Myers had a chance to tie the game in the final minute with South Carolina trailing 77-74, but his 3-pointer was off the mark with 27 seconds left. Aric Holman followed with a thunder dunk for the Bulldogs about 10 seconds later to end the drama.

It's the 13th time in 22 games that a Weatherspoon has led the scoring for Mississippi State.

Frank Booker had a career high 25 points to lead the Gamecocks, who have lost three of their past four games and all of them at home. Booker's previous high was 22 against Middle Tennessee in January 2017 when he played for Florida Atlantic.

BIG PICTURE

Mississippi State: The Bulldogs didn't get to the foul line much, but made their chances count. Mississippi State shot 12 fewer free throws than South Carolina, but made 14 of their 15 tries. It's a solid formula to close out tight games.

South Carolina: The Gamecocks appeared a bit sluggish in the first game against a non-ranked opponent in two-and-half weeks. Starting point guard Wesley Myers, a big reason South Carolina beat Top 25 teams Kentucky and Florida, had four turnovers and zero assists the first 20 minutes. He finished with five turnovers and one assist.

MUCH ADO

Mississippi State freshman Abdul Ado had a career high 16 points, grabbed nine rebounds and had four blocks before fouling out with less than three minutes to go. Howland said it was the 6-foot-11 Ado's best overall showing this season. Howland also apologized to Ado when he didn't get any postgame questions. "That okay," Ado said. "I got the win."

MISSING MINAYA

Freshman Justin Minaya played the most minutes of all South Carolina guards because of his tenacity and ability to play on-the-ball defense. But Minaya sat out with an ankle he sprained in practice. Martin wasn't sure how soon Minaya might return

UP NEXT

Mississippi State starts a two-game home stand against Georgia on Saturday night

South Carolina hits the road to play Texas A&M on Saturday.

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 497790

Reported Deaths: 9917
CountyCasesDeaths
Harrison34102530
DeSoto31839398
Hinds31837622
Jackson24314377
Rankin21881388
Lee15427234
Madison14525279
Jones13772241
Forrest13412250
Lauderdale11937314
Lowndes10934185
Lamar10470135
Pearl River9431237
Lafayette8454138
Hancock7697126
Washington7365156
Oktibbeha7111129
Monroe6727174
Warren6642176
Pontotoc6609101
Neshoba6606205
Panola6460131
Marshall6386132
Bolivar6266145
Union596094
Pike5784152
Alcorn5633101
Lincoln5417134
George491879
Scott470998
Tippah465381
Prentiss464181
Leflore4627143
Itawamba4596104
Adams4570119
Tate4546109
Copiah445191
Simpson4421116
Wayne438572
Yazoo438586
Covington427394
Marion4216107
Sunflower4215104
Coahoma4115104
Leake407787
Newton380879
Grenada3692108
Stone358464
Tishomingo356391
Attala330289
Jasper328265
Winston313191
Clay306375
Chickasaw296767
Clarke290694
Calhoun277945
Holmes266987
Smith262550
Yalobusha232647
Tallahatchie225251
Walthall217763
Greene215548
Lawrence211140
Perry204755
Amite203954
Webster201645
Noxubee185340
Montgomery179056
Jefferson Davis170642
Carroll167438
Tunica158639
Benton147438
Kemper141241
Choctaw133026
Claiborne131237
Humphreys129038
Franklin119128
Quitman106227
Wilkinson104539
Jefferson94234
Sharkey64020
Issaquena1937
Unassigned00

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 813481

Reported Deaths: 15179
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson1139971910
Mobile722271323
Madison51970686
Shelby37279341
Baldwin37069540
Tuscaloosa34934599
Montgomery33953725
Lee23142240
Calhoun22142470
Morgan20639372
Etowah19758496
Marshall18245300
Houston17302405
St. Clair15912337
Cullman15306290
Limestone15202198
Elmore15075284
Lauderdale14143294
Talladega13715272
DeKalb12569259
Walker11085366
Blount10094174
Autauga9893146
Jackson9789180
Coffee9182189
Dale8859181
Colbert8789200
Tallapoosa7044195
Escambia6732127
Covington6682179
Chilton6587160
Russell625958
Franklin5930105
Chambers5559142
Marion4955126
Dallas4882199
Clarke472782
Pike4719105
Geneva4564126
Winston4473101
Lawrence4264117
Bibb421686
Barbour355475
Marengo334089
Monroe330262
Randolph327063
Butler324794
Pickens313882
Henry310965
Hale309187
Cherokee299957
Fayette290679
Washington250951
Cleburne246958
Crenshaw243575
Clay240367
Macon230562
Lamar215846
Conecuh185652
Coosa178538
Lowndes173761
Wilcox167438
Bullock151744
Perry138040
Sumter131038
Greene125544
Choctaw86927
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A cold front passing through our area overnight will bring into our area some of the coolest temperatures of the season so far. We will see most of the highs this weekend only in the upper 60s to lower 70s. While overnight lows will drop off down into the 40s Saturday night.
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