GAMEDAY Mens Basketball

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Mens basketball

Tennessee 70, South Carolina 63

COLUMBIA, S.C. -- After a listless performance in a loss to Missouri, Tennessee coach Rick Barnes told his players it was going to be a long season if they couldn't get points off the bench.

Lamonte Turner didn't start but matched his career high with 25 points, and reserve forward Derrick Walker added 10 to help the 12th-ranked Volunteers (13-5, 4-3 Southeastern Conference) to a 70-63 win over South Carolina on Saturday night.

Tennessee's reserves scored a season-high 39 points.

"We can't get locked into a seven-man rotation," said Barnes, who got at least 10 minutes off the bench from four different players.

Turner was by far the best. The 6-foot-1 guard led the Vols in rebounds with six, made all 10 of his free throws - including four in the final 36 seconds - and had a key sequence in the second half with the game tied at 59 and South Carolina (12-7, 3-4) having just missed two chances to take its first lead since the opening two minutes.

Turner made a short jumper, and then found Admiral Schofield in the corner for a 3 on a fast break that Schofield started with a steal. The Volunteers led the rest of the way.

Justin Minaya and Wesley Myers each scored 16 points to lead the Gamecocks, who made 10 of 23 3-pointers as their inside game faded away.

Tennessee never stretched their lead beyond double digits. South Carolina had a chance to cut the lead to one or tie in the final minute but missed a 3-pointer, a short jumper, a layup and a tip-in on one possession.

The Gamecocks tied the game twice in the second half but could never push ahead. Last week, South Carolina came from 14 down in the second half to beat No. 18 Kentucky 76-68.

"When we tied the game against Kentucky, we didn't airball the next layup," Gamecocks coach Frank Martin said.

Tennessee outscored South Carolina 32-16 in the paint, getting both of the Gamecocks' main big men in foul trouble.

Chris Silva, who came in averaging a second-best 19.3 points in SEC games, scored just six points on 1-of-5 shooting, playing only 25 minutes and picking up four fouls. The Gamecocks' other starting big man, Malik Kotsar, fouled out with just eight points.

"They are learning they better put their big boy pants on if the game is like that," Martin said.



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