Nov 22

South Carolina beats South Alabama 37-12 to become eligible for bowl

COLUMBIA, SC (WIS) – University of South Carolina senior quarterback Dylan Thompson did something Saturday against South Alabama he had never done in his career with the Gamecocks: caught a touchdown pass.But he wasn’t the only Gamecock senior who closed out his career at Williams-Brice Stadium with a bang as South Carolina beat South Alabama 37-12. The win makes South Carolina eligible for a bowl bid.Strong safety Brison Williams had two interceptions, one returned for a touchdown. He ends the season with four interceptions.Thompson threw for 237 yards & a touchdown & caught a pass for a score in the win. Thompson said he had been begging the coaches to run the play that set up his touchdown catch.”We’ve probably ran that play in practice, 150 to 200 times, over the last few years,” he said. “When I saw it signaled in, it was everything I could do to keep from going crazy. I knew it would be a touchdown.”Saturday was Senior Day as the Gamecocks hosted South Alabama in the last home game of the season. This was the first time the Gamecocks (6-5, 3-5 SEC) & the Jaguars (6-5, 5-3 Sun Belt Conf.) played each other.The recently-maligned South Carolina defense now has gone five straight quarters without allowing a touchdown. All South Alabama scores were from field goals.”Our defense really came to play in the second half — held them to field goals. Our defense played super,” said Head Coach Steve Spurrier. “Give our defensive kids some credit. …

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Nov 22

South Carolina gets bowl eligible with 37-12 win

<!– google_ad_section_start –> COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — Dylan Thompson threw for 237 yards & a touchdown & caught a TD as South Carolina beat South Alabama 37-12 on Saturday.The Gamecocks (6-5) became bowl eligible & assured coach Steve Spurrier his 24th straight college season with at least six wins.South Carolina turned the ball over five times & the defense allowed South Alabama (6-5) to control the ball for long stretches. The Jaguars ran 21 more plays than South Carolina, yet they moreover had five turnovers.The Gamecocks received huge plays when they needed them, with Thompson averaging almost 24 yards a competition & the defense picking off four passes, including Brison Williams’ 21-yard interception return for a touchdown.Spurrier is 52-0 in his career against teams outside the Power 5 conferences.The victory eliminated a psychological scar for the Gamecocks, who led by 14 when the fourth quarter started & managed to complete the game off. South Carolina has lost three games this season with a two-score lead in the final period.Thompson was one of 17 seniors honored before South Carolina’s last home game. He wasn’t perfect, overthrowing a couple of balls with one of them ending up an interception. But Thompson still went 10 of 17.He moreover caught his first touchdown pass of his career in the fourth quarter as wide receiver Pharoh Cooper took a snap from the wildcat formation & threw a 7-yard scoring pass to Thompson in the corner of the end zone. Two plays before, Thompson had found Cooper for a 73-yard completion on third-and-10.Skai Moore had two interceptions for South Carolina. Williams moreover had two picks, including his score in the second quarter that put the Gamecocks ahead 17-6.Brandon Wilds ran 16 times for 77 yards, while Cooper caught three passes for 95 yards, ran five times for 42 yards & threw the touchdown to Thompson on his only pass that put South Carolina up 30-9 with 10:20 left in the game.Elliot Fry kicked three field goals for the Gamecocks, including a career best 47-yarder.South Alabama kicker Aleem Sunanon scored all of the Jaguars points, making field goals of 20, 20, 29 & 31 yards.Hunter Vaughn started at quarterback for South Alabama, yet threw four interceptions. Brandon Bridge struggled too, completing just two of his 11 passes for 19 yards. Vaughn was 15 of 23 for 151 yards.Kendall Houston ran 16 times for 68 yards, while Terrance Timmons ran 17 times for 62 yards for South Alabama. …

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Nov 22

No. 6 North Carolina defeats Davidson 90-72

<!– google_ad_section_start –> CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — Kennedy Meeks had 19 points & 12 rebounds, Justin Jackson added 18 points & No. 6 North Carolina defeated Davidson 90-72 on Saturday to remain unbeaten.The Tar Heels (3-0) received 13 points from Marcus Paige & 10 points & seven rebounds from J.P. Tokoto for their first road win of the season.Meeks was 9 of 13 from the field as taller & more athletic Tar Heels outshot Davidson 47 percent to 33 percent.North Carolina held a double-digit lead for the entire second half, then began to pull away late.The Tar Heels outrebounded the Wildcats 51-42.Peyton Aldridge had six 3-pointers & finished with 25 points to lead Davidson (2-1). Tyler Kalinowski added 12 points for the Wildcats.The game was played at Time Warner Cable Arena, home of the NBA’s Charlotte Hornets, who are owned by former Tar Heel standout Michael Jordan.Davidson, which is making the transition from the Southern Conference to the Atlantic 10 this season, stayed close with North Carolina early on behind some solid outside shooting by Aldridge, who was 6 of 10 from 3-point range.But North Carolina began to build a comfortable double-digit lead late in the he first half with an 11-0 run.North Carolina finally pulled away with approximately five minutes left, stretching its lead to 79-60 behind Meeks & Jackson, who dominated inside. North Carolina outscored Davidson 44-22 in the paint.The Tar Heels finally put the game away the 6-foot-9 Meeks scored on a run out & was fouled for a 3-point play. View gallery North Carolina’s Theo Pinson (1) dunks past Davidson’s Peyton Aldridge (23) during the first … The Tar Heels put an exclamation point on their 37th win in 41 meetings over Davidson when J.P. Tokoto slammed home a high-flying one-handed dunk on a pretty feed from Jackson.—TIP-INSNorth Carolina: Brice Johnson, who came in averaging 17.5 points per game, was a factor in the first half for the Tar Heels with nine points. But he didn’t score in the second half & fouled out with approximately five minutes left in the game.Davidson: The Wildcats came in having made 25 of 50 3-point shots on the season against Campbell & Catholic. They were 11 of 36 from beyond the arc on Saturday.UP NEXTNorth Carolina: Hosts Butler on Wednesday.Davidson: Plays at Central Florida on Wednesday.BasketballSports & RecreationNorth CarolinaJustin JacksonTar Heel<!– google_ad_section_end –>

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Nov 22

No. 9 Georgia rolls past Charleston Southern 55-9

<!– google_ad_section_start –> ATHENS, Ga. (AP) — Georgia scored two touchdowns on its first three snaps, including an 83-yard touchdown run by Nick Chubb, & the No. 9 Bulldogs rolled past Charleston Southern 55-9 on Saturday.Hutson Mason played only the first half & threw three touchdown passes, including two to Chris Conley. Mason’s 35-yard scoring pass to Conley came on Georgia’s first play following a fumble recovery by Ramik Wilson. Mason added touchdown passes of 19 yards to Justin Scott-Wesley & 23 yards to Conley.Chubb recorded his sixth straight 100-yard game, with 113 yards rushing & two touchdowns on only nine carries in the first half for Georgia (9-2). The Bulldogs, who have completed their Southeastern Conference schedule, would land in the SEC championship game if Missouri, which played Tennessee on Saturday night, loses one of its final two games.Charleston Southern (8-4), hoping for a spot in the FCS playoffs, was held to 211 total yards.Georgia led 14-0 less than 5 minutes into the game & built its lead, even with backups playing in the second half. The Bulldogs had 580 total yards – 310 passing & 270 rushing.Following Mason’s 35-yard scoring pass to Conley, Georgia again quickly struck on its second possession. On second down from the Georgia 17, Chubb ran right, turned the corner & then beat Buccaneers defensive backs Larenzo Mathis & Troy McGowens in the race to the end zone.The 83-yard touchdown run was Georgia’s longest since an 89-yarder by Tim Worley against Florida in 1985.Mason’s touchdown pass to Scott-Wesley & Marshall Morgan’s 53-yard field goal pushed the lead to 24-0 before the end of the first quarter.Charleston Southern had only two first downs until its final possession of the first half. David Kennedy’s 45-yard field goal capped a 47-yard drive, leaving Georgia with a 38-3 halftime lead.Daniel Croghan III replaced Austin Brown at quarterback for Charleston Southern late in the field-goal drive. The Buccaneers stayed with Croghan in the second half. …

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Nov 22

South Carolina football team says `Good-bye` to seniors vs. South Alabama

COLUMBIA, SC (WIS) – Saturday is Senior Day at Williams-Brice Stadium as the Gamecocks host South Alabama in the last home game of the season. This is the first time the Gamecocks (5-5, 3-5 SEC) & the Jaguars (6-4, 5-3 Sun Belt Conf.) have played each other. South Carolina received on the scoreboard first, taking its first possession 49 yards, capped off by a 42-yard field goal by Elliot Fry with 12:02 in the first quarter to take the 3-0 lead.  But the South Carolina defense couldn’t stop the Jaguars on their first possession of the game, allowing South Alabama to take the ball 70 yards in 6:43 to tie it with a 29-yard field goal with 5:19 to to in the first quarter.  The Gamecocks responded on their next offensive drive, taking the ball 73 yards in 2:38 & six plays, ending with a 29-yard touchdown pass from Dylan Thompson to Nick Jones. 10-3 the score with 2:41 in the first quarter. South Alabama made the score 10-6 with 11:42 in the second quarter on a Aleem Sunanon field goal. After South Alabama forced Mike Davis to fumble on the Jaguars 26-yard line, Brison Williams intercepted Hunter Vaughn two plays after & returned it for a touchdown, putting South Carolina up 17-6 with 8:58 to go in the second quarter.  South Carolina seniors honored before the game included Rory Anderson, Damiere Byrd, A.J. Cann, Ryland Culbertson, Jordan Diaz, Patrick Fish, Cody Gibson, Sharrod Golightly, Tyler Hull, Nick Jones, Kadetrix Marcus, Connor McLaurin, Sidney Rhodes, Corey Robinson, J.T. …

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Nov 22

How to watch Missouri vs. Tennessee: Game guide, TV/streaming, odds

Missouri can keep its conference championship hopes alive with a win against Joshua Dobbs & Tennessee. Thanks to the up-and-down play of the Georgia Bulldogs, it’s the Missouri Tigers that control their destiny in the SEC East & can earn another trip to the SEC Championship Game with just two more wins. The first of those opportunities comes against the Tennessee Volunteers that have been hot since Joshua Dobbs took over as the starting quarterback. In two starts & time against Alabama, Dobbs has already racked up seven passing touchdowns & four rushing touchdowns as the Volunteers offense has found its stride. The challenge will be keeping that going against a Missouri defense that has been playing its best as of late. After allowing 13 rushing touchdowns through the first seven games, the Missouri defense has kept opposing rushers out of the endzone for three consecutive weeks & have six interceptions in the last four. Offensively, the Tigers are led by Maty Mauk who started the year strong, struggled for a stretch, & has rebounded some recently. After zero touchdowns & five interceptions in a three-game span, Mauk tossed five touchdowns & just one interception in the last three games for the Tigers. Against a Tennessee pass defense that is one of only 31 teams that allows fewer than 200 passing yards per game, Mauk will need to keep that positive trend going. How to watch, listen, & stream Game time: 7:30 p.m. …

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Nov 22

NC unemployment rate for October dipped to 6.3 percent in October

RALEIGH, N.C. –  North Carolina’s unemployment rate in October dropped to 6.3 percent, down from 6.7 percent in September, the state Commerce Department reported Friday. The state’s 4.2 million nonfarm jobs in October outstripped the number of positions that existed when the country’s Great Recession began in December 2007, state officials said. The state’s employers added 17,200 workers in October & nearly 85,000 in the past year — trailing only a handful of larger states, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics said Friday. The state’s improving unemployment rate remained higher than the national measure of 5.8 percent in October. “The North Carolina unemployment rate went down significantly,” said John Coleman, an economics professor at Duke University’s Fuqua business school. “We’re still above the national average, yet we’re doing the right things to catch up & maybe even obtain an overall lower unemployment rate soon.” But compared to the size of the workforce, North Carolina added 2.1 percent more workers in the past year, not much more than the 1.9 percent rise in the country as a whole, said Alexandra Sirota of the North Carolina Budget & Tax Center, a unit of the liberal North Carolina Justice Center. “We are performing basically on par with the country in terms of our job growth,” she said. “Our gains, while yes, significant that we’re moving in the right direction, aren’t a result of policies that are unique to North Carolina. …

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Nov 22

Charlotte outlasts South Carolina 65-63

<!– google_ad_section_start –> CHARLESTON, S.C. (AP) — Pierria Henry knew Charlotte wouldn’t donate up against South Carolina, not after what the team had already been through at the Charleston Classic.The 49ers, down 14 points in the opening half, rallied past the Gamecocks 65-63 to reach the finals of the eight-team tournament. Mike Thorne made two foul shots with 1:10 left for the winning points, then Charlotte endured a crazy complete of turnovers, missed shots & reversed calls.In the end, South Carolina’s Sindarius Thornwell missed a 3-pointer with 2.5 seconds left & the 49ers (3-0) won their eighth straight regular-season tournament game. This latest victory followed a double-overtime effort on Thursday night when Charlotte lost a 17-point lead in the second half, yet prevailed in extra time.Henry said that showing bonded the players & proved to them what they could achieve, no matter the deficit.”It gave us a lot of hope, a lot of faith in our own program & a belief that we could overcome anything,” Henry said.They’ll need that Sunday night when they face Miami (4-0), which ended No. 8 Florida’s 33-game home win streak Monday night before rolling to a pair of 20-point wins at TD Arena.Braxton Ogbueze had 12 of his 14 points in the second half for the 49ers, who’ll face Miami for the tournament title Sunday night.Thornwell led the Gamecocks (2-2) with 20 points, only two of those in the second half.Henry had 12 points for Charlotte, Willie Clayton 11 & Thorne 10.Clayton said the team has had success playing well early, contributing to their stellar run in early tournaments. ”I hope that we can take that & carry it all the way down through the season,” he said.Thorne had a chance to ice the game with two more free throws with 14 seconds left yet missed them both. Charlotte was originally ruled to have rebounded Thorne’s second miss, yet officials reversed the call after looking at replays to set up the final moments.South Carolina had to inbound three times – Charlotte had just five fouls – & Marcus Stroman was tied up on a drive. The Gamecocks inbounded it to Thornwell for one final attempt.Thornwell as just 1 of 9 shooting in the second half.Gamecocks’ coach Frank Martin said the game turned at the start of the second half when Charlotte picked up its play. ”They came out in the second half & imposed their will,” he said. ”’Here’s the ball. …

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Nov 22

North Carolina’s rising health insurance rates demand smart strategies

CHARLOTTE, NC (Ann Doss Helms/The Charlotte Observer) -People renewing health insurance bought on the Affordable Care Act exchange are seeing higher rate increases in Charlotte & North Carolina than most places across the country, a flurry of national analyses show. For instance, a Kaiser Family Foundation look at the largest city in each state found that only Anchorage, Alaska, had higher rates & bigger increases than Charlotte. North Carolina’s results vary with studies using different methods, yet the state consistently comes out high. Enrollment for 2015 began Nov. 15 & runs through Feb. 15. As national policy analysts began crunching numbers, local customers received a look at their new rates. Julie & Mike Tuggle, self-employed real estate brokers in Charlotte, bought a subsidized Blue Cross & Blue Shield policy in 2014 & paid $376 a month. Their notice said the total premium was going up 16 percent, yet their share would go to $622, a 65 percent increase. “I expected it to be the same, or like 10 percent different,” Julie Tuggle said. …

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Nov 22

Djurisic, Thornton lead Georgia past Troy

<!– google_ad_section_start –> ATHENS, Ga. (AP) — Nemanja Djurisic likes the progress Georgia made this week with improved ball movement.If the Bulldogs can stay on task for an entire game, Djurisic likes his team’s chances to score more points this season.”In this game we really helped each other,” Djurisic said. ”We passed the ball. We ran well. We did a really satisfactory job, I think. We just need to be more consistent throughout the whole game.”Djurisic & Marcus Thornton each scored 17 points to assist Georgia beat Troy 82-60 on Friday night.Starting point guard Charles Mann added 14 points & eight rebounds, & J.J. Frazier had six assists in a reserve role for the Bulldogs (2-1).Wesley Person finished with 20 points & Chris Bilbo had 10 points & nine rebounds for Troy (1-2).The Bulldogs were outrebounded in just eight games last season, yet they had been beaten on the boards in each of their first two games. Against Troy, they finished with a 43-33 advantage.Georgia, which tied Kentucky for second place in the Southeastern Conference last season, was coming off a 10-point home win over Stony Brook last Tuesday.Georgia dropped its opener last week at Georgia Tech, the Bulldogs’ fourth straight defeat in the series.Troy was coming off a 10-point home loss to Mississippi.Thornton made consecutive baskets with a layup & a dunk to donate the Bulldogs an 18-point lead with 13:18 remaining. Most of Georgia’s offensive success resulted from a stingy defense that received the ball out quickly on swift breaks.Georgia had 17 assists, six by reserve guard J.J. Frazier in 21 minutes.”We have a very balanced offensive team,” Bulldogs coach Mark Fox said. …

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