COLUMBIA, S.C. (WIS) - Gamecock basketball fans should expect a high level of enthusiasm on the court this weekend when the South Carolina men host Missouri on Saturday at 3:30 p.m.
Both teams will bring confidence to the court. Last Tuesday, Missouri erased a 20-point deficit to defeat Georgia while snapping a four-game losing streak in the process.
"They're an aggressive team," said Carolina senior forward Maik Kotsar. “I know they're excited to play."
Meanwhile, two days ago, the Gamecocks (12-8, 4-3 SEC) went to Arkansas and left with a 79-77 victory.
"Everyone was excited about the win," exclaimed Kotsar.
South Carolina has won four of its last five. With that, the Gamecocks' senior leader hopes to carry that momentum to the floor when they face Mizzou.
"We knew it was a quality win against Arkansas on the road," added Kotsar. "Sometimes, teams get too excited after a win or down after a loss. It requires focus and effort to be ready for the next game."
Taking on the Tigers offers another opportunity to watch the true freshman trio of Trae Hannibal, Jayln McCreary, and Wildens Leveque to show progress. Last time out, in a two-point win at Arkansas, they combined for 25 points on 69% shooting from the field.
"They always come in ready to work and ready to get better," said Kotsar.
Kotsar admires the confidence Hannibal displayed at Arkansas. At several points, the Hartsville product voiced his willingness to guard the Razorbacks' best scorer, including on the last possession of the game to secure the victory.
"That shows real maturity," Kotsar stated. "That shows that he's ready to take on the challenge. As a freshman, it caught me off guard. At the same time, knowing the type of person he is, I should have expected."
Hannibal plays with passion and intensity on the court. Expect the same from the Gamecock senior, Kotsar, as they near the end of the season.
Carolina’s game against Missouri can be seen on the SEC Network. You can also hear the game on the radio at 107.5 The Game.