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South Carolina improves to 2-0 with win over East Carolina

It wasn’t pretty, but the Gamecocks got the job done.

NCAA Football: South Carolina at East Carolina James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports

For the first time since 2017, the South Carolina Gamecocks are 2-0 to open the season. South Carolina moved to 2-0 on Saturday following their 20-17 road win over East Carolina, in a game where the Gamecocks didn’t look all that great for most of the time.

South Carolina looked incredibly out of sorts from the start, as East Carolina’s first play from scrimmage saw quarterback Tyler Snead found Jsi Hatfield for a 75 yard touchdown to get the scoring underway. The Gamecocks started putting together a drive of their own, but it ended when quarterback Zeb Noland threw an interception to East Carolina’s Warren Saba.

South Carolina would commit another error early in the second quarter when Dakereon Joyner fumbled at the SC 30 and East Carolina recovered and took it all the way to the 13, scoring two plays later to make it 14-0.

Just when it looked like 14-0 would remain the score going into the half, the Gamecocks finally caught a break, as Damani Staley intercepted a pass and took it 63 yards for a touchdown to finally get South Carolina on the board.

The third quarter looked similar to the first two for South Carolina’s offense as they struggled to get anything going, but the defense held tough and near the end of the quarter, Noland found Joyner for a 13 yard touchdown to tie the game at 14.

The teams traded field goals early in the fourth quarter to keep the game tied, and then with five minutes left, South Carolina got the ball back off a ECU punt and Noland led a slow, methodical drive down the field, as South Carolina ran the clock all the way down to three seconds and called on Parker White to attempt to win the game. White kicked it straight through the uprights as time expired to move the Gamecocks to 2-0 on the year.

Next week looms large for the Gamecocks, as they head to Athens to face the #2 Georgia Bulldogs.