South Carolina scraps past Bulldogs for second SEC win

Malik Cooke scored the go-ahead basket with 24 seconds left and the host Gamecocks rallied from seven points down in the second half to snap their five-game losing streak.

South Carolina (10-15, 2-9 SEC) won its first game since Jan. 25, overcoming a 46-39 deficit with nine minutes remaining. Cooke scored 13 points to lead the Gamecocks, who had lost nine of their past 10.

Georgia’s Gerald Robinson drained a 3-pointer from the left corner with 46 seconds left to give the Bulldogs (12-13, 3-8) a 56-55 lead. After a timeout, Cooke banked home a runner in the lane with 24 seconds to go to put the Gamecocks ahead 57-56.

Robinson drove to the basket on the other end, but Damontre Harris blocked his fifth shot of the night. South Carolina’s Bruce Ellington missed the front end of a one-and-one, the only missed free throw for the Gamecocks. Georgia grabbed the rebound, but Kentavious Caldwell-Pope’s 3-point attempt bounced high off the front rim.

The officials called a jump ball and Georgia got possession with 0.2 seconds left, but the inbounds pass was tipped and time expired.

Georgia started quickly, building a 16-9 lead on Dustin Ware’s 3-pointer with 9:04 left before halftime. The Gamecocks used a 9-0 run to erase the early deficit, then used an 11-2 run to take a 50-48 lead on Ellington’s driving basket with 4:33 remaining.

Harris finished with nine points and eight rebounds to go with the five blocked shots.

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