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The Item's Wednesday Watch 2.12.20

The Item’s Wednesday Watch is a weekly look at the buzz around tri-county sports. The Item sports staff will pick its most noteworthy stories, stats and quotes for the week. 1. USC women …

South Carolina forward Aliyah Boston (4) battles for a rebound against Connecticut guard Anna Makurat during the Gamecocks' 70-52 win on Monday in Columbia.

Harris, No. 1 South Carolina earn first win over UConn 70-52

COLUMBIA - South Carolina's Tyasha Harris really thought coming in she wasn't bothered by her losing history against UConn. Then Harris and the top-ranked Gamecocks won - and her attitude and emotions changed quickly. "Yes, this feels pretty …

Hammond School defensive lineman Jordan Burch (6) signed his letter of intent to play with South Carolina on Thursday.

Five-star DT Jordan Burch signs with South Carolina

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) - Highly regarded, five-star defensive tackle Jordan Burch has ended the suspense and signed with South Carolina. Burch, a 6-foot-5, 275 pound tackle from Columbia, had committed to the Gamecocks in December, but did not send …

Clemson quarterback Trevor Laurence and the Tigers' focus this offseason is to get in position to return to the national championship game for a third straight season.

Swinney: Clemson focused on getting back to title game

CLEMSON - Clemson coach Dabo Swinney first task after the Tigers' national title loss was crystal clear: Make sure his players weren't crushed by the defeat. After all, a good chunk of Clemson's roster - including quarterback Trevor Lawrence - …

Clemson co-offensive ordinator Tony Elliott speaks during media day for NCAA College Football Playoff national championship game Saturday, Jan. 11, 2020, in New Orleans. Clemson is scheduled to play LSU on Monday.

Elliott to make $1.6 million as Tigers offensive coordinator

CLEMSON - Clemson offensive coordinator Tony Elliott has received a raise and will earn $1.6 million a year after the school approved a new contract for several Tigers assistants. With the raise, Elliott is now tied with Alabama's Steve Sarkisian …

Jordan Burch

Hammond's Burch still up in air with Carolina

When it comes to lack of clarity, the Iowa caucus has nothing on the Jordan Burch signing ceremony on Wednesday at the Hammond School gymnasium. The 5-star defensive end and four of his teammates gathered in front of media, family and some …

South Carolina guard Zia Cooke (1) and the Gamecocks were ranked as the No. 1 team in the first seeding of the top 16 of the NCAA Women's Tournament released on Monday.

South Carolina, Baylor headline top seeds in NCAA reveal

STORRS, Conn. - South Carolina, Baylor, Louisville and Oregon would be the four top seeds if the women's NCAA Women's Tournament began Monday. The NCAA on Monday provided its first snapshot of the top 16 teams in the tournament field. Those …

Fire Ants split season-opening doubleheader

The University of South Carolina Sumter baseball team split a doubleheader with Southeastern Community College-Whiteville on Sunday at Riley Park, winning the opener 7-3 and losing the nightcap …

South Carolina guard Tyasha Harris (52) attempts a layup past the defense of Mississippi forward Dominique Banks (13) during the Gamecocks' 87-32 win on Thursday in Oxford, Mississippi.

No. 1 South Carolina races to 27-0 lead, routs Ole Miss

OXFORD, Miss. - Despite an overwhelming defensive performance that held Mississippi scoreless in the first quarter and limited Ole Miss to two points in the first half, South Carolina coach Dawn Staley saw room for improvement. "I don't think we …

USC Sumter pitcher Austin Pearce fires a pitch during practice on Thursday. Pearce comes into the 2020 season as the Fire Ants' ace and will start their season opener on Saturday.

USC Sumter opens baseball season this weekend with pair of doubleheaders

The University of South Carolina Sumter baseball team is coming off of a solid season in 2019. The team finished with a record of 31-22 and made it to the Region X championship game before falling to Spartanburg Methodist College. The Fire Ants …

South Carolina guard Tyasha Harris (52) is defended by Mississippi State guard Myah Taylor during the Gamecocks' 81-79 win on Monday in Columbia.

No. 1 South Carolina women beat No. 9 Mississippi St 81-79

COLUMBIA - Down nine points in the fourth quarter and close to getting run out of her building, South Carolina coach Dawn Staley didn't panic. Her top-ranked Gamecocks wouldn't let her. Tyasha Harris had a season-high 23 points and the Gamecocks …

South Carolina's Zia Cooke, center, shoots between Missouri's Amber Smith, left, and Elle Brown, right, during the second half of an NCAA college basketball game Thursday, Jan. 16, 2020, in Columbia, Mo. South Carolina won the game 78-45.

South Carolina, Baylor lead women's Top 25

NEW YORK - South Carolina still sits atop The Associated Press women's basketball poll, with Baylor in second place. The Gamecocks received 22 first-place votes from a 30-member media panel Monday. The Lady Bears got six. UConn moved up to …

South Carolina's Aliyah Boston, (4) goes up for a shot against Missouri's Hannah Schuchts during the Gamecocks' 78-45 win on Thursday in Columbia, Missouri.

Top-ranked South Carolina dominates Missouri 78-45

COLUMBIA, Mo. - South Carolina earned its No. 1 ranking with a style coach Dawn Staley described as "fast and fluid." The Gamecocks showed they could overwhelm an opponent with their size in a half-court game on Thursday, beating Missouri …

Clemson running back Travis Etienne (9) announced on Friday that he will be coming back to school for his senior season.

Two-time ACC player of the year Etienne returning to Clemson

CLEMSON, S.C. (AP) - Two-time Atlantic Coast Conference player of the year Travis Etienne is returning to Clemson for his senior season. Etienne, the 5-foot-10, 210-pound junior running back from Jennings, Louisiana, announced his decision on …

Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence (16) will return next season, looking to lead the Tigers to a third straight national championship game.

A familiar AP top 10 looking to 2020

The final Associated Press Top 25 of the season has a familiar look. LSU is No. 1 after winning the national championship. Add Clemson, Ohio State, Georgia, Florida, Oklahoma and Alabama and you have seven of the preseason top 10 teams finishing …