Gamecocks On The Road At Top-Ranked Tennessee Wednesday

by UofSC Athletic Communications

COLUMBIA, S.C. - South Carolina (12-11, 7-3 SEC) travels to face No. 1/1 Tennessee (22-1, 10-0 SEC) on Wednesday in Knoxville, marking the second meeting between the two schools this season. The Vols captured a 92-70 win in the first matchup on Jan. 29, in Columbia. Roy Philpott (play-by-play), Mark Wise (analyst) and Alyssa Lang (sidelines) will handle the call for the SEC Network broadcast.

STARTING FIVE

> South Carolina looks to even the season series against top-ranked Tennessee on Wednesday, as the teams meet for the second time in 2019. The Vols captured a 92-70 win in Columbia in the first meeting between the two schools just 15 days ago (Jan. 29). > In that first matchup against UT, senior forward Chris Silva put together another standout performance. He scored 28 points, and pulled down 10 rebounds - including a season high eight on the offensive glass - for his sixth double-double of the season. Graduate student guard Tre Campbell was the only other Gamecock in double figures in that contest with 14. > Trailing by 13 with just over 15 minutes to play vs. Arkansas on Saturday, Carolina would put together a 12-0 run over the next four-+ minutes to pull within two with 11:29 remaining, and a layup from rookie guard A.J. Lawson would make it 56-54 with 9:17 to play, giving the Gamecocks their first lead since the early seconds of the game. Knotted at 61 with 5:42 to go, Carolina would close on a 16-4 run to capture the 77-65 comeback win at home. > Rookie guard A.J. Lawson put together a complete game vs. the Razorbacks, matching a season high with eight made field goals, will hitting a season best four 3-pointers, to go along with seven rebounds and three assists. Over the course of the last five games, Lawson is averaging 15.2 points, 5.4 rebounds and 2.0 assists per game. > Carolina has had some impressive late-game defensive stretches this season. Carolina held Arkansas scoreless the final 3:11, finishing the game on a 10-0 run during the stretch. The Gamecocks held Florida without a made field goal in the final 7:17 of the SEC season-opening win in Gainesville, and Carolina held Auburn without a field goal the final 4:01 of the home win on Jan. 22.

COACHES VS. CANCER 3-POINT CHALLENGE

> Frank Martin and the Gamecock men's basketball team has joined forces with the NABC and the American Cancer Society for the Coaches vs. Cancer 3-Point Challenge, which will take place during the month of February. During the month, every 3-pointer the Gamecocks make will help raise money to beat cancer. The 3-Point Challenge is a nationwide program that unites basketball teams and their fans for a common cause -- ending cancer. Fans can join the 3-Point Challenge and help beat cancer on the court by pledging a donation for every 3-pointer the Gamecocks make in February by visiting http://www.pledgeit.org/cvc19-south-carolina. During the month, Gamecock fans can keep up with the leaderboard at www.3pointchallenge.org.

EARLIER THIS SEASON VS. TENNESSEE

> South Carolina held strong behind the early play of senior forward Chris Silva, as the Libreville, Gabon, native tallied 22 points in the first half. > UT's Grant Williams was also impressive in the first half, pacing the team with 17 points on seven made field goals in the opening stanza. > Tennessee's 36 made field goals were the most by a Gamecock opponent during the Frank Martin era > In that contest, Silva became the first Gamecock in school history to have 700 rebounds and at least 500 free throws made. > Graduate student guard Tre Campbell was the only other Gamecock in double figures with 14 points in the contest. He was 3-of-4 from 3-point range, which began a streak of three-consecutive games with three 3s (UT, at Georgia, vs. Kentucky).

GAMECOCKS VS. THE AP NO. 1

South Carolina is 1-13 all-time vs. the AP No. 1, including the Jan. 29 loss to top-ranked Tennessee in Columbia.

THROUGH 23 GAMES...

> Carolina is 12-11 overall, 8-5 in home games, 3-5 on the road and 1-1 at neutral sites. > Silva and Lawson are both averaging 13.7 points per game, with Silva scoring 316 this season, and Lawson 314. > The only other Gamecock in double figures is senior guard Hassani Gravett at 10.7 points per outing. > Lawson has led or shared the team lead in scoring 10 times, in rebounds six times and in assists eight times. > Silva - who is ranked fourth in the SEC with 2.0 blocks per game (overall games) - has 13 games with two or more blocks this season. > The Gamecocks have scored 80+ nine times this season, going 8-1 in those contests. > Carolina is 8-2 this season when leading at the half.

FRANK MARTIN

> South Carolina head coach Frank Martin is in his seventh season leading the Gamecocks and 12th season overall as a head coach in 2018-19. Martin, the 2017 Jim Phelan National Coach of the Year (CollegeInsider.com), led South Carolina to its first Final Four and a school record 26 wins in 2016-17. In his 11 complete seasons as a head coach, Martin has led his teams to at least 21 wins seven times. Martin is a native of Miami, Fla., and a graduate of FIU. > Prior to his time on the sidelines in the college ranks, Martin spent 15 years in high school coaching in Miami, Fla., including the last seven as a head coach. He was part of five state championships as an assistant at Miami Senior High School (1985-93), before earning two titles as the program's head coach (1995-98). Highlighting Martin's stint as the head coach of the program were consecutive 30-win seasons and consecutive Florida 6A State Championships in 1996 and 1997, with his 1997 squad earning a 36-1 overall record and ranking No. 4 in the USA Today Top 25 Poll. He also served as the head coach at North Miami Senior High School (1993-95) and one season at Booker T. Washington High School (1999-2000). > Among active Division I head coaches, South Carolina's Frank Martin holds the seventh-highest (tied with Michigan's John Beilein) NCAA Tournament winning percentage (.667) behind only Duke's Mike Krzyzewski, North Carolina's Roy Williams, Kentucky's John Calipari, Kansas' Bill Self, Michigan State's Tom Izzo and Villanova's Jay Wright. > Martin led team's are 102-98 (.510) all-time in league play.

QUICK HITS

> South Carolina is in its 111th season of varsity basketball in 2018-19. > Gamecock head coach Frank Martin is joined on the sidelines by assistant coaches Perry Clark (6th season), Bruce Shingler (3rd season) and Chuck Martin (2nd season). Andy Assaley is in his seventh season as the director of operations. > South Carolina is one of 13 DI schools nationally that have two or more former DI coaches serving as an assistant coach. Perry Clark served as the head coach at Tulane, Miami (Fla.) and Texas A&M-Corpus Christi, while Chuck Martin was the head coach at Marist for five campaigns. > South Carolina advanced to its first Final Four in 2016-17, which included posting its first NCAA Tounament win since the 1973 campaign when it talied a 93-73 win over Marquette in the First Round. > The Gamecocks are 24-14 (.631) in neutral-site contests under the direction of head coach Frank Martin, including a 3-3 mark last season. > Carolina was 15-18 (.454) over the course of the last three seasons in away contests (2015-16, 16-17, 17-18). > Martin is 31-42 (.424) against ranked opponents as a head coach. His teams have four wins over opponents ranked in the top five, and two wins over opponents who are ranked No. 1. > Senior forward Chris Silva was named to the Preseason All-SEC First Team by both the media and coaches; and also named to the Karl Malone Award Watch List, the Naismith Trophy Watch List and the Wooden Award Preseason Top 50 Watch List. He was also named a Senior CLASS Award Candidate.

SCOUTING THE GAMECOCKS

> South Carolina looks for its fourth SEC road win at Tennessee on Wednesday, marking the second contest between the two schools this season. UT has been ranked No. 1 in each meeting. > Lawson and Silva continue to carry the offensive load for Carolina, as both average 13.7 points on the year, and have combined to score 630 points this season. > Lawson's 314 points thus far are the most in a season by a Carolina freshman since Sindarius Thornwell scored 454 points as a rookie. > In road games this season, Lawson is scoring a team high 14.5 points per outing, Silva (11.8) and Gravett (10.3) are also in double figures. > Also in road games, Gravett is averaging 50% from 3-point range, 18-of-36. > In games against ranked opponents this season, Silva is averaging 17.3 points, 9.7 rebounds and 53.8 percent from the field. He scored a career high 32 vs. No. 16/15 Auburn, and followed a week later with 28 vs. top-ranked Tennessee. > Rookie forward Keyshawn Bryant has six double-figure scoring games in league play, including 17 vs. Arkansas on Saturday, with 15 of those points coming in the second half. In SEC play, he is averaging 9.3 points per game. > South Carolina returns seven letterwinners from last season's 17-16 squad, including senior guardHassani Gravett and senior forward Chris Silva. > Carolina welcomes nine newcomers to its roster this season, including transfers and six freshmen student-athletes. Jair Bolden (transfer/George Washington/guard), redshirt-junior Raymond "Quad" Borup (r-junior/forward), graduate transfer Tre Campbell (transfer/Georgetown/guard), Keyshawn Bryant(freshman/guard), Jermaine Couisnard (freshman/guard), Alanzo Frink (freshman/forward), A.J. Lawson(freshman/guard), T.J. Moss (freshman/guard) and Nathan Nelson (freshman/forward).

SCOUTING THE VOLUNTEERS

> Tennessee is ranked No. 1 for the fourth straight week in both the AP and Coaches polls. > Tennessee is led by head coach Rick Barnes in his fourth season in Knoxville. > The Vols have won a school record 18 straight games, including a 73-61 win over Florida on Saturday. > UT is undefeated at home with a 14-0 record. > Five average double-figure points for the Vols, led by Grant Williams' 19.9 points per game, which is also an SEC best. > Admiral Schofield, who tallied a team best 24 points in the first meeting against Carolina this season, adds 16.5 per game, followed by Jordan Bone (13.3), Lamonte Turner (11.8) and Jordan Bowden (11.3). > Tennessee averages 85.4 points per game, behind 51.6 percent from the field and 76.3 percent at the free throw line. > In strictly league play, UT holds a +17.1 scoring margin over its opponents.

COMING UP NEXT

Carolina opens up a two-game homestand when it hosts Texas A&M on Saturday at Colonial Life Arena. Tip time vs. the Aggies is set for 1p.m. ET on the SEC Network with Dave Neal (play-by-play) and Daymeon Fishback (analyst) on the call.

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