USF battled against 16th ranked South Carolina, but fell 77 to 66, dropping their overall record to 5-4 on the season. Turnovers doomed the Bulls after leading South Carolina throughout a majority of the game until late.
USF went toe-to-toe with South Carolina in the first half, leading 37 to 31 heading into the break. USF won the rebounding battle 26 to 17 and shot 43% from the field. The Bulls showed a lot of fight and were able to take a surprising early lead in this game. Jahmal McMurray had 15 points to lead the way for Coach Antigua’s group.
However, countless turnovers by the Bulls late and sharp shooting from South Carolina allowed Frank Martin’s group to take a late lead and held off the Bulls, sending USF to the loss.
For the game, USF shot 42% compared to a 44% mark for South Carolina. USF did win the rebounding battle at 41 to 34, but it was those pesky turnovers that doomed the Bulls. USF had 17 of them (7 for South Carolina) while dishing out just 5 assists. You can’t beat many teams like that, especially a team ranked in the top 25 of the country.
McMurray led the way with 25 points and 3 turnovers for the Bulls, but did have 5 turnovers. Geno Thorpe had 11 points, 9 rebounds, and 2 steals (5 turnovers and no assists). Malik Fitts had 12 points and 8 rebounds. Bo Zeigler and Luis Santos each chipped in 5 points and 6 rebounds a piece.
PJ Dozier had 23 points, rebounds, and 3 steals for South Carolina. I will give credit to the Bulls, they battled their hearts out but the sloppy turnovers doomed them in this one.
The Bulls will host NIU on Tuesday evening (game begins at 7 PM) as they try to bounce back and get back in the win column before the holidays.
by Matt Staton
SoFloBulls.com Columnist | @USFMatt
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