If we lose, it won't be because we couldn't - because they had more people here than we did.
Duke lost, quite simply, because their roster is - was - flawed, and the individual talent amongst their ranks was not enough to overcome it.
Duke would briefly reclaim a two-point lead a few minutes later, but a three-point play from PJ Dozier at the 12:03 mark gave the Gamecocks a lead they would never relinquish.
The South Carolina Gamecocks and Baylor Bears face off in the Sweet 16 this Friday night at Madison Square Garden in College Basketball action. And it's just to give the team that extra boost.
SC goes on to meet third-seeded Baylor in the East Region semifinals Friday night at New York's Madison Square Garden.
The South Carolina Gamecocks are going to the sweet 16.
It sounded like typical coach hyperbole when Duke's Mike Krzyzewski said the Gamecocks would be the best defensive team his club has faced this season.
Dorsey also tied the game with a 3 with 1:45 remaining on the way to 27 points before teammate Dillon Brooks took a charge on the other end for OR (31-5). Tatum had 15 points and shot 6-for-12 from the field, but he had five turnovers and never looked comfortable going one-on-one, where he may be the best isolation scorer in the country. Dorsey made 9 of 10 shots with four 3-pointers.
"[South Carolina] played a heck of a game", Krzyzewski said after the game.
SC - whose campus is just 120 miles from Greenville - had a majority of the fans in the arena on Friday night in its win over Marquette. SC went into halftime down by a 31-24 margin at halftime but scored 65 points in the 2nd half and pulled away after taking a 68-58 lead with 5:23 left in regulation.
The Gamecocks scored 65 second-half points on 71.4 percent shooting. They'd made just three in the first half, with 14 misses of their 28 total misses were from deep.
Allen received an indefinite suspension in December that ultimately lasted one game after he was caught tripping an opponent for the third time in a calendar year, then had every move the rest of the se ason critiqued on social media. But South Carolina - which entered the tournament on a low note - had other ideas. The game was in Greenville, S.C., meaning that there wasn't a shortage of Gamecock fans in the building. Such was the case as the South Carolina Gamecocks pulled off an upset over everyone's favorite team to hate, the Duke Blue Devils.
And once the tide started to turn, once the crowd in Greenville started to get behind SC, everyone watching on TV could see them start to feed off of that energy. The NCAA isn't allowing North Carolina to host any contests until the bill is killed.
This weekend was, in a way, a perfectly fitting ending for Duke's season.
"We're just elated to be moving on and going to the Sweet 16", said Dawn Staley. I didn't think we should be playing a one-seed in the second round on their home floor and I think we proved that in both our games. That was when the Blue Devils won four games in four days to capture the ACC tournament title, the first team ever to do that. "The thing is with all those algorithms, they can't calculate heart, will to win, toughness, desire".
They couldn't run offense when they needed to run offense.
"I wasn't nervous, because I dream for moments like this", said the kid whose recruitment was one phone call. "I knew if we could build it - and it was a big if - but if we could build it and we play the kind of basketball that I like my team to play, that our fans would absolutely love it".