Gamecocks drop to Hokies in last exhibition before season.
COLUMBIA, S.C. (WOLO) – USC played their second and final exhibition of the preseason Sunday, hosting Virginia Tech in their Hoops 4 Hurricane Relief matchup, falling to the Hokies 86-67.
Hassani Gravett had a team-high 15 points while Wes Myers dropped 11, the only other Gamecock to reach double figures.
Both teams’ head coaches, Frank Martin and VT’s Buzz Williams, along with their families, each donated $5,000 to help victims of recent hurricanes in Houston, Florida, and Puerto Rico.
The Hokies jumped out to a 9-7 lead at the first media timeout after starting the game 4-for-7 from the field. After trailing 12-7, Carolina battled back to take 15-14 lead as freshman Felipe Haase knocked down a 3-pointer from the top of the key with 13:24 remaining in the opening half. The Gamecocks knocked down three-straight shots en route to their first lead of the game.
Carolina remained ahead by a point, 19-18, with 11:15 to go. The Hokies went to a smaller lineup and were able to retake the lead 33-28 with just over two minutes left in the first half, thanks to a 14-2 advantage in fast break points. Tech remained ahead by six, 36-30, as the teams headed to the locker room for halftime. Haase (9) and freshman Justin Minaya (7) led the Gamecocks in the opening 20 minutes, combining for 16 points.
In the second half, Carolina pulled within two, but the Hokies went up 50-43 at the under 12 media timeout. Two 3s by Tech pushed the lead to double digits for the first time, 57-45, with just under 10 minutes to play.
After trailing by 13 with just over 6 minutes to go, the Gamecocks pulled within seven, 69-62, after Gravett knocked down a long-ball with 4:57 remaining in the game. A 9-0 run by the Hokies halted the comeback, as they remained in front by double digits the rest of the way.
Carolina opens the 2017-18 season at Wofford Friday night.
Gamecock Athletics contributed to this article.