Columbia, SC (Sports Network) - Brenton Williams came up clutch with 12 points in the extra period to push the South Carolina Gamecocks to a thrilling 82-75 overtime victory over the Milwaukee Panthers in the Hoops for Hope Classic at Colonial Life Arena.
USC (1-0) overcame a 17-point deficit in the second half to give coach Frank Martin a victory in his debut with the program. Freshman forward Michael Carrera contributed a double-double with 17 points and 15 boards while senior transfer LaShay Page poured in 19 points in his first appearance in a Gamecock uniform. Lakeem Jackson also made an impact with 12 points on 6-of-10 shooting.
The Panthers (1-1) were paced by the stellar point guard play of Jordan Aaron, who scored 28 points, dished out six assists, grabbed four rebounds, and registered three steals in 44 minutes of action before fouling out. James Haarsma recorded a double-double with 14 points and 10 rebounds in the losing effort.
Milwaukee built a 38-23 lead before halftime by shooting 8-of-14 from three- point range and scoring eight points off turnovers in the opening 20 minutes. The Gamecocks went 0-of-8 from distance in the first half.
Page scored 17 points in the second half to bring USC back into the equation. Mindaugas Kacinas made two clutch free throws to tie things up and force overtime.
Williams was unstoppable in the extra period and Kacinas grabbed five boards in five minutes to help the Gamecocks seal the thrilling come from behind win.
South Carolina held a 45-33 edge in the rebounding battle.