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Bobcats Fall to South Carolina in Cancun

Nov. 28, 2008

Final Stats

CANCUN, Mexico - Ohio mounted a big second-half charge and outscored South Carolina over the final 20 minutes of play, but it was not enough as the Bobcats (1-3) fell 43-34 to the Gamecocks (2-2) to open up the Cancun Thanksgiving Shootout Friday night.

Unkind rims and turnovers proved to be the Bobcats' undoing, as they managed just 28 percent shooting from the field and turned the ball over 26 times, which resulted in 21 South Carolina points. Senior Lauren Hmiel led the way for Ohio with nine points and a team-high seven rebounds. Catherine Cain chipped in eight points off the bench, while junior Jenny Poff added six to go along with five rebounds. Chandra Myers also chipped in five rebounds as the Bobcats won the battle on the boards with a 41-37 advantage.

"I was disappointed with our effort in the first half. We did not come out and compete the way we needed to," Ohio coach Semeka Randall said. "Give South Carolina all the credit. They played aggressively and took away our scoring opportunities. In the second half, we competed better, but by then it was too late."

Kamille Buckner scored the first points of the night on a bucket inside to give the `Cats an initial 2-0 advantage. That would be the only lead they would hold however, as South Carolina came back to take the lead. The rims proved especially unkind to both sides early as the two teams combined for just 10 points through the first 11-plus minutes of play, with USC holding the slight 6-4 edge on the scoreboard. The Gamecocks continued to add to their advantage as a lid on the Ohio rims helped give USC the 18-8 halftime lead. Hmiel totaled four of the Bobcats' points.

Ohio outscored USC 26-25 in the final 20 minutes, including a 16-2 advantage over the final 6:44 of play. The Gamecocks controlled the action over the first four minutes of the second half and took a 24-10 lead on a jumper from Demetress Adams with 16:16 left. The Green and White battled hard, and after a bucket from Hmiel, found themselves down 31-17. USC responded with a 10-1 run to take its largest lead of the contest at 41-18 with 6:44 to play.

The Bobcats dominated the action from there, as the defense held the Gamecocks to just a pair of free throws the rest of the way as Ohio started its run. Cain scored six points, while Poff added three to fuel a 9-0 `Cat run that cut the deficit to 14 with 3:44 to play. A Jennifer Bushby 3-pointer cut the margin to 10 at 42-32 with 2:13 left to play. The Gamecocks then stalled on offense to eat away precious time from the clock. Freshman Maxine Ohakim scored on a bucket inside to cut the deficit to eight with 18 seconds to play, but it would not be enough as clock ran out with USC on top.

The Gamecocks were paced by Brionna Dickerson's game-high 15 points.

Ohio will now recoup as it prepares to take on Fordham, who fell 53-48 to UNC Wilmington, tomorrow to conclude the tournament. Tip-off is set to get under way at 5 p.m. ET. Fans can follow the action via radio with a link at www.ohiobobcats.com. Pregame is set to get underway around 4:45 p.m.