COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — Aliyah Boston had 11 points and 10 rebounds for her 68th career double double to keep No. 1 South Carolina was undefeated after a 102-39 win over Coastal Carolina on Wednesday.
Boston played only 13 minutes and was four games away of matching Sheila Foster’s record for double-doubles, which she established over four decades ago.
Ashlyn Watkins, a freshman, scored 16 points for her career and Zia Cooke 14, as the defending national champions rose to 12-0 for their second consecutive season and fourth time under Dawn Staley’s coaching.
This proved to be a challenge for Chanticleers (5-6), with only two players six feet tall or more, while South Carolina had 10.
Staley mixed-and matched her talented, deep roster and nearly every Gamecock got to see it.
South Carolina was leading 13-2 in five minutes and steadily increased its lead to 36 at halftime. No matter what Staley did, the Gamecocks’ trademark defense never wavered.
They outbounded Coastal Carolina 34-12. In the first 20 minute, they had 12 blocks.
Boston was responsible for three of the 16 season-high season blocks. One of those was when she chased down Amaya Adam, who had stolen the ball from Boston and was moving towards her basket when Amaya, the reigning AP Player Of The Year, sank the shot out of bounds.
Arin Freeman scored 15 to lead Coastal Carolina. The team shot 20.5% (15 out of 73) and was 43% better than the season average. Aja Blount, who was the Chants’ top scoring player at 17.5 points per match, was limited to six points after 2-of-14 shooting.
South Carolina ended the second round with five players in double figures.
Coastal Carolina. The Chanticleers lost to Wake Forest, Georgia and Kentucky under Kevin Pederson as their first-year coach. Before falling to the Gamecocks, they took on Power Five teams. Pederson believes that their schedule will prepare them for the Sun Belt Conference.
South Carolina: The Gamecocks are done having fun. They’ll be playing three of their five first SEC games at home. Staley said that her team is still trying to find the right form to be conference regular season champions and national champions.
A few days before Christmas, South Carolina’s coaching staff pulled their holiday sweaters out of the sidelines. Staley wore an oversized red sweater, while her assistants and staff wore festive outfits. The winner? Assistant Lisa Boyer was the winner. She wore a Christmas tree-inspired dress with gold leggings, green and red elf shoes.
Coastal Carolina: Sun Belt Conference play opens at James Madison Dec. 29.
South Carolina: Starts defense of its SEC regular-season title against Texas A&M on Dec. 29.
AP women’s college basketball: https://apnews.com/hub/womens-college-basketball and https://apnews.com/hub/ap-top-25-womens-college-basketball-poll and https://twitter.com/AP_Top25