MSU Extends Lead in SEC West

By: Associated Press
By: Associated Press

Charles Rhodes scored six of his 24 points in overtime as Mississippi State overcame its top player fouling out to defeat South Carolina 61-56 Saturday.

The win extended the Bulldogs' lead atop the Southeastern Conference Western Division to two games after Arkansas lost to Kentucky.

The Gamecocks (12-14, 4-8) looked headed to the win after Evka Baniulis hit the second of two foul shots -- his first time at the line all year -- to give them a 50-47 with 6.1 seconds to go.

But with 1.1 seconds left Baniulis fouled Ben Hansbrough on a 3-point shot. Hansbrough, a 76.7 percent foul shooter, hit all three to send the game into overtime.

Just 13 seconds into the overtime the Bulldogs lost their leading scorer when Jamont Gordon was called for his fifth foul after charging into Mike Holmes.

But it didn't prevent Mississippi State from jumping out to a 55-50 lead with 3:05 remaining on a dunk by Rhodes and a 3-pointer by Phil Turner, who had came into the game for the first time in place of Gordon.


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