Ole Miss fell behind in the first half and trailed 29-19 at intermission as the offense had trouble getting on track. The early moments of the second half proved to be more of the same as Ole Miss trailed by 18 points at 45-27 on a jumper by Charenee Stephens.
But the Rebels battled back to cut the USC lead to eight points on several occasions, the last time at 58-50 on two free throws by Kayla Melson with 3:20 to go. However the Gamecocks scored the remaining points in this one to win by 14.
"We were out of sync from the beginning of the game," said Ole Miss head coach Renee Ladner. "Credit South Carolina. They came at us and we didn't answer calls."
The Rebels, now 14-6 on the season and 5-2 in the SEC, host Florida at 2 p.m. Sunday. South Carolina improved to 11-9 and 4-4.
Valerie Nainima led USC with 17 points including five 3-pointers. LaKeisha Sutton added 12 points for the Gamecocks, while Stephens had 12 points.
Melson scored 17 points to pace Ole Miss, and Shantell Black had 11. SEC leading scorer Bianca Thomas was limited to eight points for the Rebs.
"The bright spot for us was Kayla Melson," Ladner said. "She fought from the tip, and she was still fighting to the end."
Ole Miss shot only 38 percent (19-50) from the field and was just 3-12 from 3-point range. The Gamecocks shot 47 percent from the floor.
USC outrebounded the Rebels 35-29.
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