Couisnard Sinks Buzzer Beater to Help Gamecocks Knockoff No. 10 Kentucky, 81-78

Couisnard Sinks Buzzer Beater to Help Gamecocks Knockoff No. 10 Kentucky, 81-78
South Carolina guard Jermaine Couisnard (5) hits the game-winning shot against Kentucky during second-half action in Columbia, S.C. on Wednesday, Jan .15, 2020. (Source: (Travis Bell/SIDELINE CAROLINA))

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) -- Freshman Jermaine Couisnard hit a 3-pointer as the buzzer sounded and South Carolina rallied from 14 points down in the second half to stun No. 10 Kentucky 81-78 on Wednesday night.

Couisnard had a career-high 26 points, including his game-winner that banked in for the Gamecocks (9-7, 1-2 Southeastern Conference). When it went through the net, Couisnard and his teammates ran around the court in celebration as the fans errupted in cheers.

Moments earlier, Immanuel Quickly banked home a shot with 4.1 seconds to go that tied things at 78. Quickly led Kentucky (12-4, 3-1) with 20 points.

Keyshawn Bryant scored 15 points for the Gamecocks, who had four players in double figures.

Kentucky led by 14 less than five minutes into the second half and was still up 54-41 on EJ Montgomery's two foul shots with 11:41 left.

That's when Justin Minaya started a 27-14 run over the next seven minutes that ended with Couisnard's basket off the glass to tie things at 68-all.

After Ashton Hagans put Kentucky up again with two foul shots, Minaya answered with a 3-pointer that sent the crowd into pandemonium.

Minaya added two more baskets between a drive by A.J. Lawson and South Carolina was ahead 76-71 with 1:46 to go.

Kentucky tied it a final time on Quickly's jumper after Lawson missed two foul shots with a chance to seal the game.

South Carolina ended a three-game losing streak against Kentucky. The Gamecocks past five wins over the Wildcats since 2009 have all come at Colonial Life Arena.

It was impossible to imagine South Carolina winning after an awful first half where it missed its first 10 shots and was shooting less than 25 percent from the field.


> The Gamecocks shot lights out in the second half, shooting 55.6 percent (20-for-36 FGs, 5-for-9 3FGs) from the floor while outscoring the Wildcats, 56-45.

> After trailing by 13, 54-41, with 11:39 to play in the game, South Carolina outscored Kentucky 40-24 the remainder of the game led by 15 points from Couisnard.


> Redshirt freshman guard Jermaine Couisnard not only hit the game-winning shot on a buzzer beater, but he also scored a season best 26 points behind nine made field goals, including four 3-pointers.

> Redshirt freshman guard TJ Moss scored 10 points and dished out three assists in 23 minutes of action in the win over the Wildcats. His 10 points marked a season high.

> The Gamecocks committed just nine turnovers in the game, their fewest since also committing nine vs. Houston on Dec. 8 earlier this season.

> Sophomore forward Keyshawn Bryant hit six baskets for a season-high 15 points in tonight's win over the Wildcats.

> Carolina held the advantage in all specialty stats, outscoring UK 34-26 in points in the paint, 19-9 in points off of turnovers, 16-10 in second-chance points and 10-8 in fast-break points.

> The Gamecocks scored 56 points in the final 20 minutes, marking the team's first time scoring 50-plus in half since an 85-79 win vs. Coastal Carolina on Nov. 30, 2018.

> Tonight marked Carolina's first victory of the season when trailing at halftime.

> With tonight's win, head coach Frank Martin is now 33-44 (.429) against ranked teams as a head coach.


Carolina will play its next two contests on the road, beginning with this Saturday’s matchup at Texas A&M (8-7, 2-2 SEC). Tip for the contest is set for 1 p.m. ET, with Richard Cross (play-by-play) and Barry Booker (analyst) on the call for the SEC Network broadcast from College Station.