COLUMBIA, S.C. – South Carolina hit a season-high 13 3-pointers to cruise past Rider 88-76 in a nonconference game Monday night.
Junior Brenton Williams made five 3-pointers to lead the way as he scored a career-high 22 points to pace four Gamecocks in double figures. Freshman Mindaugas Kacinas added a career-best 18 points, Lakeem Jackson finished with 14 and LaShay Page chipped in with 12 points.
South Carolina improved to 3-0 for the first time since 2009. The Broncs dropped to 2-2.
The Gamecocks connected on 13 of 27 attempts from the 3-point arc. Seven came in the second half, when they pulled away with a 10-4 run highlighted by 3-pointers from Page and Kacinas.
Williams finished 5 of 8 from beyond the arc and Page was 4 of 9.
Freshman Michael Carrera missed his second straight game with a concussion he suffered in practice last week, so South Carolina was left with only eight healthy scholarship players. The Gamecocks battled early foul trouble and had to play more zone than in their first two games.
Page, their leading scorer with 19.5 points a game coming in, played only five minutes in the first half after picking up two early fouls. All five Gamecocks starters had at least two fouls at the half, but South Carolina still led 44-37 with a balanced attack that saw five players score at least six points.
South Carolina opened the second half with two 3-pointers by Williams and another by Page, but the Broncs hung around thanks to the play of junior guard Nurideen Lindsey. He scored 19 of his game-high 26 points in the second half.
The Gamecocks' lead reached double figures on a layup by Kacinas with 12 ½ minutes left. They pushed the lead to as many as 20 points before settling for the 12-point victory.
Jonathon Thompson added 14 points and Anthony Myles chipped in 13 points for Rider.