GAMECOCK FORWARD HONORED …
University of South Carolina senior guard Sindarius Thornwell has been named the Southeastern Conference (SEC)’s 2017 player of the year, according to the league’s coaches.
Thornwell was also a first-team all-SEC selection – and made the conference’s all-defensive squad.
The 6-foot-5, 211-pound Lancaster, S.C. native finished the regular season averaging 21.2 points, 7.3 rebounds, 2.9 assists, 2.2 steals and 0.9 blocks per game. All but one of those marks (assists) are career highs.
Thornwell missed a month of the 2016-17 season for an undisclosed violation of “athletic department policy,” but bounced back with a sensational stretch of play against conference opponents.
In eighteen SEC games, Thornwell never failed to notch double figures in scoring – and hit the twenty-point threshold eleven times.
South Carolina (22-9, 12-6) is looking for its first NCAA tournament appearance since 2004 – and its first victory in the “Big Dance” since 1973. Last year’s squad narrowly missed out on receiving an invitation, although this year’s team played a tougher non-conference slate and is generally viewed as a “lock” to make the tournament.
Head coach Frank Martin‘s team is the No. 4 seed in this week’s SEC Tournament and will face either fifth-seeded Alabama, No. 13-seed LSU or No. 12 seed Mississippi State in quarterfinal action on Friday afternoon at roughly 3:30 p.m. EST.
That contest will be televised nationally on the SEC Network with Joe Tessitore, Sean Farnham and Kaylee Hartung calling the action.
Banner via Travis Bell Photography