No. 5 South Carolina starts fast in an 85-51 win over Purdue

NCAA Basketball
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COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP)Destanni Henderson scored 15 points and No. 5 South Carolina used a strong defensive effort to rout Purdue 85-51 on Sunday.

The Gamecocks (10-1), returning to the court after a week off due to exams, showed no signs of rust. The Boilermakers (7-3) couldn’t solve the Gamecocks’ zone and missed shots when they did. South Carolina took full advantage as it doubled up Purdue to take a 26-13 lead in the opening quarter.

Point guard Ty Harris, honored before the game for scoring her 1,000th career point, had 14 points and five assists.

The Gamecocks let a 25-point lead slip to 15 in the second half before their defense re-asserted itself, Zia Cooke scoring four points around a steal in less than 30 seconds and Harris finishing a pass from Cooke with a layup through contact.

Cooke also had 14 points, Lele Grissett had 11, Mikiah Herbert Harrigan had 12 and Aliyah Boston scored 10 for the Gamecocks.

Karissa McLaughlin led the Boilermakers with 18.

BIG PICTURE Purdue: The Boilermakers continue to search for a marquee win. They beat decent Drake and Arizona State teams, but lost to Gonzaga, then at Virginia Tech in the first week of December. South Carolina: The Gamecocks started a three-game stretch of higher-profile programs with a win. After five straight games on the road, South Carolina returned to its home court and played its best 10 minutes of the year in the first period. UP NEXT Purdue hosts its final pair of nonconference games, beginning with Western Kentucky on Wednesday. South Carolina hosts Duke on Thursday, then South Dakota on Sunday before taking off for another lengthy break. The SEC schedule follows. —

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