Vanderbilt tops South Carolina 83-74 behind Pippen in finale

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Scotty Pippen Jr. tied a career high with 21 points and Maxwell Evans added 20, leading Vanderbilt to back-to-back wins for the first time since December with an 83-74 victory over South Carolina in a regular-season finale on Saturday.

Pippen hit a career-high 15 of 16 from the foul line.

Saben Lee added 197 points for the Commodores (11-20, 3-15 SEC), who beat Alabama on Monday.

Lee erupted for a career-high 38 points in his previous game.

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He scored the game’s first basket, but then missed seven straight shots from the floor before heating up in the second half.

South Carolina narrowed the deficit to 72-68 on two foul shots by Trae Hannibal with 2:04 left, but that was as close as it got.

Commodores freshman Dylan Disu scored 14 points and 6-foot-10 Ejike Obinna grabbed a game-high 12 rebounds.

South Carolina (18-13, 8-6) lost for the fourth time in six games.

Jermaine Couisnard fouled out with 1:29 left with 13 points for the Gamecocks.

South Carolina’s Keyshawn Bryant had 13 points and seven rebounds. Hannibal scored 11.

South Carolina missed 12 of 13 shots from 3-point range.

Vanderbilt trailed by two points at halftime before opening the second half with a 15-6 run.

Vanderbilt finished strong in the first half, narrowing the deficit to 35-33.

TORNADO RELIEF

Vanderbilt hosted a donation drive to assist with Middle Tennessee relief efforts at the McGugin Center before the game for victims of Tuesday’s tornadoes, which killed at least 24 people and destroyed dozens of buildings.

The Community Resource Center requested tarps, personal hygiene items, bleach, trash bags, gloves, baby and toddler clothes, formula, underwear, bras, batteries and baby food.

The Nashville tornado reached wind speeds of about 160 mph.

There was a moment of silence before the game to honor those affected by the storms.

First responders were asked to stand to be honored during a first-half timeout.

BIG PICTURE

South Carolina: The Gamecocks led at halftime before fading in the second half.

Vanderbilt: The Commodores finished last in the SEC, but won their last two games in the regular season.

UP NEXT

South Carolina heads to the SEC tournament, which begins at Bridgestone Arena on Wednesday.

Vanderbilt, the 14 seed in the SEC tournament, plays its first game at 8:30 p.m. Wednesday.

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