Basketball: Game Observations, SC State

The staff breaks down USF's win over South Carolina State. Read on for our inside observations.



USF overcame early miscues to beat South Carolina State 82-69. The (0-2) Bulldogs showed great speed and aggression, but the Bulls were clearly the more talented team. McHugh Mattis had a career high seven blocks while dominating the paint all night long. Freshmen Amu Saaka saw his first action of the season, but he was disappointed with his first collegiate dunk saying it could have been "prettier". The game plan for the (2-0) Bulls was to attack the sides of the perimeter with their size advantage, but struggled early on winning the battle between the boards. Read on to check out some notes from the game. Only on!!!


Attendance: 2772


Starting lineups

USF                                                                 South Carolina State

Chris Capko-G                                                Travis Jones-G

Solomon Bozeman-G                                          Derrick Davis-G

Melvin Buckley-F                                            Robert Baker-G

McHugh Mattis-F                                               Julius Carter-F

Melvyn Richardson-C                                       Brian Mason-F


First Half:

  • Chris Capko started strong and missed only one jump shot in first half. He was involved in nearly every play
  • Freshman Adamu Saaka came in as the first sub with fresh legs driving and dishing the ball around the perimeter
  • First dunk of the game was by Mattis McHugh with seven minutes remaining in first half.
  • With a minute left, McHugh Mattis rebounded and tipped a shot getting the crowd back into the game.
  • USF struggled early on with turnovers and rebounding. They had six turnovers and three offensive rebounds in first twenty minutes.
  • McHugh Mattis has three blocks in the first half. Two of the blocks resulted in three pointers for the Bulldogs.
  • Coach McCullum: "With three minutes left in first half, the switch to man from zone is turn around point and USF never looked back."
  • USF goes on 11-2 run before halftime thanks mostly to free throws. By end of the first half, the Bulls had made 13 of 17 free throws while the Bulldogs were 0-1
  • Melvin Buckley nails a fade away jumper before the end of the first half to give USF the lead, 37-36.
  • South Carolina State attempts 16 three point shots while connecting on six.
  • The Bullsdogs largest lead was eight points
  • Melvin Buckley and Chris Capko play entire 20 minutes of first half while Mattis McHugh plays 18 minutes.



Second Half:

  • McHugh Mattis starts strongly in the second half by driving to the basket and making a lay-up
  •  Solomon Bozeman drives in the paint dishes a beautiful pass to Melvyn Richardson for a lay-up
  • Melvin Buckley hits a three pointer, USF takes the lead 48-42, 15 minutes left and the USF defense picks up the pace even more
  • USF looks like a different team and starts winning the rebounding battle.
  • With ten minutes left, Freshman Adamu Saaka hits a jumper from the bench-side corner USF leads 57-49….On the other side of the court, McHugh Mattis #15 blocks another shot.
  • With nine minutes left, Freshman Solomon Bozeman drives in the lane for an easy lay-up.
  •  With eight minutes left, Chris Capko hits a three to get crowd off their feet.
  • Bulldogs switch to a full court press.
  • With a minute left, Melvin Buckley hits yet another three point shot
  • McHugh Mattis has four blocks in second half which gives him seven on the game.
  • Bulldogs connect on only 5 of 12 three pointers. For the game, they shot 28 three pointers but hit only 11
  • USF never gave up lead after taking a one point advantage at the end of the first half.
  • Freshman Adamu Saaka finished the game with 12 points, four assists, and two rebounds.
  • The Bulls' largest lead in the game was by 14 with six minutes left in the second half
  • USF was 21-29 on free throw for free throws while the Bulldogs were 0-1
  • After draining only two of five three pointers, the Bulls respond in the second half by being perfect and hitting 5 of 5
  • USF ended winning the rebounding battle 34-28 thanks in part to McHugh Mattis who pulled down 12 boards.
  • Melvin Buckley played for 38 minutes and along with McHugh Mattish had 18 points.

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