"We played the way we wanted to at the start of the game and then a few plays went against us," said Georgia Head Coach Dennis Felton. "We lost the game in a seven to ten minute stretch."
Levi Stukes managed to score somehow, but not without a mighty struggle. Stukes was forced to shoot quick shots because the Cocks knew that no other Bulldog players were a scoring threat. He ended the night on the bench fouled out and with 15 points. Other Georgia players were not there to help Stukes.
Sundiata Gaines, coming off a career high 23 points against Tennessee, did not score until the second half and Channing Toney's inconsistent play continued as he was silent for much of the night. Only Steve Newman joined Stukes in double digits with ten.
Georgia's offensive struggles started after they grabbed a 13-3 lead and seemed to be playing some of the best basketball of the season. At that point, Georgia looked like it was going to settle into a typical SEC fight with their neighbors to the east, but they had no clue what was about to come.
The Gamecocks socked Georgia in the gut with white hot 56.7% shooting from the floor. They finished the wounded Dawgs off by shooting 66.7% from three-point land. Those healthy shooting percentages powered the tidal wave that was Carolina's 41-11 run.
"That was the momentwe talked about coming into this game and we did exaclty the opposite (of what we wanted to do)," said Felton.
Dave Odum's team looked like SEC Championship contenders, but they were playing one of the worst teams in the conference – Georgia.
Georgia still has not figured out how to deal with a full court press; their big men are outmatched and can't be depended upon in SEC for points (South Carolina outscored the Dawgs 26-12 in the paint and the Cocks had 10 blocked shots); and this team is the most inexperienced and inconsistent in the SEC – these are facts.
"I expect us to take our lumps and to learn from our experences," said Felton.
This season can't be judged in terms of wins and losses – it's not a fair assessment of the job Dennis Felton is doing. Instead, effort – a difficult thing to judge – will have to be the measure of success for this year's edition of the Bulldogs.