COLUMBIA, S.C. -- Playing without starting offensive tackle Jarriel King and starting cornerback Chris Culliver, South Carolina broke open a close game in the second quarter to go into halftime with a 24-6 lead Thursday night over Southern Miss at Williams-Brice Stadium.
Here's a quick halftime analysis:
Turning point: Freshman receiver Ace Sanders took a pitch on a reverse and turned on the jets for a 53-yard run to set up fellow freshman Marcus Lattimore's first touchdown run of the half, turning a 10-3 lead into a 17-3 lead. It was the longest run for South Carolina since the 2006 season.
Best call: South Carolina coach Steve Spurrier stuck with junior quarterback Stephen Garcia for most of the first half. Garcia got into a rhythm after the initial possession and played well. Spurrier didn't want to break Garcia's rhythm and held off on going with true freshman Connor Shaw until the final possession of the half.
Best player: Garcia, Sanders and Lattimore all had their moments, but South Carolina sophomore cornerback Stephon Gilmore is a force. He's shut down everything that has come his way.