No. 5 South Carolina edges No. 4 Mississippi State

Associated Press

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) – A’ja Wilson tied her season high with 26 points, Allisha Gray had 16 of her 17 points in the final two quarters and No. 5 South Carolina held off previously undefeated No. 4 Mississippi State 64-61 in a Southeastern Conference showdown Monday night.

The Gamecocks (17-1, 7-0 SEC) trailed 35-28 at halftime and were still down 48-46 with less than two minutes left in the third period. But behind Wilson and Gray, South Carolina pushed forward for its ninth straight win over the Bulldogs (20-1, 6-1) and grabbed control of the conference as it tries for a fourth straight SEC title.

Mississippi State had several chances to win. Victoria Vivians could’ve tied the game at 62 after getting fouled on a 3-pointer with 18.6 seconds left. But after hitting the first two free throws, Vivians’ final attempt rattled away and the ball went out of bounds off the Gamecocks.

Blair Schaefer’s 3-pointer from the right corner with 8 seconds left missed the mark. Again, the ball came up Mississippi State’s way on a tie up beneath the basket. But Vivians missed a short shot with 4 seconds left, Wilson collected the rebound and hit two foul shots for the final margin.

(Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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