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Gamecocks stumble against Boston U.

PHILADELPHIA - South Carolina fell short of last-second heroics in a 68-67 loss to Boston University in the second game of the Saint Joseph's Hawk Classic at Hagan Arena on Monday.

Junior Valerie Nainima netted 29 points, but 22 turnovers and 53.8 percent free-throw shooting put the Gamecocks (6-5) in a deficit from which they could not recover.

The Terriers took a six-point lead into halftime thanks to a 12-0 run with just under 13 minutes left in the period, which erased a seven-point Gamecock lead.

South Carolina was whistled for three fouls and committed seven turnovers during the stretch. A jumper from Ebony Wilson stemmed the tide, and the Gamecocks reclaimed the lead, 19-18, on consecutive Nainima buckets and a driving layup from La'Keisha Sutton with six minutes to go in the half.

The Terriers answered with an 8-0 spurt behind solid defensive rebounding and steady free throw shooting. Their lead grew to nine points, but Nainima hit a 3-pointer just before halftime.

Both teams had a steady parade to the free throw line in the second half. Boston pushed its lead to 43-32 with 13:19 left, when Nainima and Sutton went to work.

A 3-pointer from Nainima and a pair of free throws from Sutton pulled it back to a six-point margin at the 11:12 mark. The Gamecocks could get no closer, however as the Terriers found their way through the pressure defense and held their own on the glass.

Inside the final 20 seconds, the Gamecocks had a chance to take the lead when Charenee Stephens pulled down a defensive rebound and found Nainima bounding up the center of the court. She drove into traffic and could not connect on a bucket amidst the flailing defenders.

Moran hit a pair of free throws to stretch the Boston lead back to three with eight seconds to go.

The Gamecocks drew up an inbounds play for Nainima, Sutton or Walker, but could not find any of them to go for the tie.

Bone finished with 15 rebounds, but hit 1-of-10 from the field to finish with five points.

Sutton netted 15, and Walker added 10 points to the effort.

South Carolina will play Brown in the tournament's consolation game today at 2 p.m.

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