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Central Michigan Chippewas vs. #1 South Carolina Gamecocks Women's Basketball Final: Carolina pulls away late to win 80-45

The Lady Chippewas tried to pull off an upset, but South Carolina's depth and size was too much to tame.

Jason Miller-USA TODAY Sports

Play was extremely sloppy in the beginning, as both teams threw errant passes, put up swattable shots, and committed bad turnovers. Early chances proved to be the name of the game, as South Carolina made the most of their advantages, while CMU missed lots of easy shots. Ultimately, #1 South Carolina won the game 80 to 45.

CMU had shooting woes abound in the first half as the Lady Chips hit zero three-pointers in the first half, with sharpshooters Kirby Tamm and Jessica Green going just 0-1 combined. The team as a whole shot 27% from the field in the first half, including a surprising zero points off of eight offensive rebounds.

Crystal Bradford accounted for half of the team's points for most of the game, finishing with a game-high 20 points on the day. Lorreal Jones, who was hurt late in the second half, scored 10 points and had 8 rebounds. Jas'Mine Bracey struggled to put anything into the basket, but did manage 8 rebounds on the day. CMU finished 30% on the day, including an uncharacteristic 2-12 from behind the arc.

All of the starters for the Gamecocks were in double digits, highlighted by two double-double from Alaina Coates (16 points, 10 rebounds) and Elem Ibiam (10 points, 12 rebounds.) A'ja Wilson and Aleighsa Welsch finished with 12 points each. Tiffany Mitchell was the team leader with 18 points.

CMU was within 13 at the half, but South Carolina ran up the deficit to as high as 30. South Carolina dominated on defense in the second half, holding CMU to zero transition points and 2 points off of 11 offensive rebounds,  all while forcing 23 turnovers over the entire game. The Gamecocks also made history with their victory; they have never started a season with 11 victories.

The Lady Chippewas (4-4, 0-0 MAC) next face the Minnesota Golden Gophers, while #1 South Carolina (11-0, 0-0 SEC) will play the Liberty Flames. Both teams will be closing out their participation in the Subway Classic, being hosted by University of Minnesota. Both games will be played tomorrow.