COLUMBIA, S.C. — Redshirt sophomore guard D.J. Stewart Jr. had 29 points as the Mississippi State men’s basketball team topped South Carolina 75-59 inside Colonial Life Arena on Saturday.
Sophomore guard Iverson Molinar had 16 points, four assists and four rebounds. Redshirt sophomore forward Tolu Smith added nine points and eight rebounds.
The Bulldogs (11-9, 5-6 SEC) shot 26-for-56 (46.4%) from the field, including 10-for-19 (52.6%) from 3-point range. MSU shot 13-for-26 (50.0%) in the second half and outscored South Carolina 39-29 in the half.
Turnovers remain an issue for the Bulldogs. On Tuesday, MSU turned the ball over a league-high 26 times. MSU followed that up with 21 turnovers on Saturday. However, South Carolina turned the ball over 14 times and MSU managed a 22-17 edge in points off turnovers.
The Gamecocks (5-7, 3-5 SEC) shot 19-for-61 (31.1%), including 5-for-25 (20.0%) from beyond the arc. Junior guard A.J. Lawson and junior forward Keyshawn Bryant led them with 13 points apiece.
The Gamecocks went up 11-5 with 15:47 left in the first half before the Bulldogs scored the next eight points to go up 13-11.
South Carolina managed to go back up by four points at 19-15 with 9:19 left, but MSU used a 16-3 spurt to take a 36-24 lead with three minutes to go. The Gamecocks made the last three baskets of the half to cut the deficit to six points at 36-30 at the halftime break.
Freshman guard Deivon Smith made a 3-pointer to open the second half and put the Bulldogs up 39-30, but the Gamecocks responded with a trio of triples to knot things up at 39-39 with 17:48 to play.
A 13-0 run by the Bulldogs then put MSU up 63-49 with 8:20 left in the game, and MSU never let up, going on to win 75-59.
The Bulldogs will now return home for a game against LSU on Wednesday at 8 p.m. CT. It will be televised by ESPNU.