Couisnard Scores 40, As Oregon Beats South Carolina In The First Round 87-73


It had the look of a defensive battle. Then Jermaine Couisnard exploded.

The No. 11 seed Oregon Ducks took care of the No. 6 seed South Carolina Gamecocks on Thursday in Pittsburgh 87-73.

In the first half both teams struggled to score the basketball. The Ducks, who had the least amount of turnovers in the Pac-12, was turning the ball over all over the court due to a swarming South Carolina defense. Oregon had nine first half turnovers. But the Ducks ended the half with a 34-29 lead after Ta’Lon Cooper hit an incredible full court buzzer beater.

But the second half was a different story as the Ducks, led by senior Jermaine Couisnard, figured out the Gamecocks defense. Only one turnover for the Ducks in the second half helped them get good shots and it was usually Couisnard finishing the play. Couisnard finished with 40 points in the game including 26 in the second half. And with the towering defense by N’Faly Dante, Oregon got the win over South Carolina 87-73.

Cousinard finished 14-22 for 40 points and 6 assists. N’Faly Dante continued his dominant ways with 23 points, 6 rebounds, 2 blocks, and 2 steals. Freshman Kwame Evans stepped up in his biggest game of the year with 8 points and West Linn High School grad Jackson Shelstad had 11 in his first NCAA tournament game.

Next up for the Ducks is a matchup with the No. 3 seed Creighton Blue Jays (24-9) from the Big East. Creighton defeated Akron 77-60 in the first round.  It will be Oregon coach Dana Altman’s first time coaching against his former team. Altman coached Creighton for 16 years before taking the job in Eugene.