COLUMBIA, S.C. -- Jocelyn Penn tied her career high with 32 points as No. 9 South Carolina won its 12th straight game, 91-66, over Arkansas on Sunday.
The Lady Gamecocks' (16-1) run to the top of the Southeastern Conference at 4-0 this year gets put to the ultimate test Thursday night when No. 2 Tennessee comes to the Carolina Coliseum.
For a while, South Carolina seemed like it was looking ahead to that showdown. Arkansas (9-6, 0-3) went ahead 37-36 on India Lewis' 3-pointer to start the second half.
But then Penn was the centerpiece of a 28-3 run that put the game away. She had a three-point play to get things going, then followed with two inside shots. In all, Penn scored 14 points during the surge, which saw the Lady Gamecocks go ahead 64-40.
The Lady 'Backs were 1-of-15 from the field during the run and had few answers to South Carolina.
Shameka Christon, Arkansas' leading scorer, had 10 points on 4-of-16 shooting. Starter Kiesha Beard missed her nine attempts from the field.
Dana Cherry came off the bench to lead Arkansas with 19 points.
Penn tied the career high in scoring she set in a 77-53 victory over Wofford on Dec. 8. Her final two foul shots pushed the junior past the 1,000-point mark, the 24th South Carolina player to reach that milestone.
The 12 straight wins is one shy of the school mark, set during the 1985-86 season. If the Lady Gamecocks want to tie that, they'll have to do it against the Lady Vols. The campus already is buzzing about the matchup and the school has priced tickets at $1, trying to break the women's all-time attendance mark of 6,219 at the UCLA-South Carolina game on Jan. 15, 1981.
Shaunzinski Gortman added 17 points and seven assists for the Lady Gamecocks.
South Carolina looked ready to break open a back-and-forth game with a 10-0 run, keyed by two Kelly Morrone 3-pointers, late in the first half to lead 34-26.
But Cherry had two buckets as Arkansas responded with the next eight points to tighten things again.
Tatyana Troina's short jumper put the Lady Gamecocks ahead 36-34, the closest any opponent has been to South Carolina at the half since Temple led 28-22 nine games ago.
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