Gamecocks finish pre-holiday schedule at Temple

BY: TYRIA GOINES

COLUMBIA, S.C –– No. 4/5 South Carolina travels to head coach Dawn Staley’s hometown of Philadelphia to take on her former team, Temple. Tipoff at Liacouras Center in Pennsylvania is at 7 p.m. on Thu., Dec. 21. The game will be aired on ESPN3. 

The Gamecocks are 240-248 all-time in true road games, including a 68-37 mark under Staley. In SEC action, Staley is 43-26 through her first nine seasons at South Carolina. 

Tonight’s game features two of the just five players in NCAA Div. I to rank among the top 50 in both scoring and rebounding this season — South Carolina’s A’ja Wilson and Temples Tanaya Atkinson. 

With 14 points and 12 assists against Savannah State, sophomore guard Tyasha Harris became the first Gamecock to record multiple points-assists double-doubles in a season since Cristina Ciocan posted five, including one triple-double, in 2003-04. 

Junior forward Alexis Jennings quickly established her presence in the paint and has seen that grow with two double-doubles in her last three outings. Her physical play and 64.4 percent shooting accuracy make it difficult for opponents to double-team off her as well.  

Dawn Staley has been involved in both meetings between the Gamecocks and Owls, but she was on the other sideline for both. The Gamecocks played a home-and-home series with Temple in the 2001-02 and 2002-03 seasons, claiming both contests. 

With a win tonight, Staley will stand alone as the Gamecocks winningest head coach. The victory would be her 232nd in her 10th season in Columbia, passing 13-year Gamecock mentor Nancy Wilson’s 231.

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