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Aug. 28, 2003

Columbia, S.C. – The South Carolina women’s soccer team opens the 2003 season on Friday night with a match at #20 Clemson at 7:30 p.m. The Gamecocks return to the field fresh off a 13-6-2 season in 2002, in which Carolina set a school record for road wins as well as the longest winning streak in USC’s history.

The returning players include co-captains, Melissa Hutson and Alison Jarrow. Jarrow, a senior from Downingtown, Pa., earned second team All-SEC honors at defender as a junior and started all 21 matches last season for Carolina. In her first full season in the back, Jarrow was a big part of a stingy defense that allowed just 0.8 goals per game. Huston, also a senior from Downingtown, Pa., returns in an integral role as center midfielder and center defender for USC. Huston has a strong presence in the middle of the field both offensively and defensively. Huston had two goals and an assist last season, including the lone goal for South Carolina in a 1-1 tie at SEC champion Auburn.

Also returning for Carolina is senior goalkeeper Elise Matthews, who has been a staple in the net the past three seasons and will continue to flourish. Matthews holds the school record for goals against average with a 0.78 mark, a record she has set the last two years.

The largest home crowd in USC women’s soccer history witnessed a tight battle last season between South Carolina and Clemson with Tiger midfielder Heather Beem scoring in the 87th minute to propel Clemson to a 1-0 win. The crowd of 1,863 fans at Stone Stadium surpassed the previous mark of 1,208 vs. Georgia on September 11, 1998, exaxtly four years earlier. Carolina goalkeeper Elise Matthews played the entire 90 minutes and made 10 saves for the Gamecocks.

Friday night’s match will also be broadcast on with Richard Rowell and Andy Fields calling the action. South Carolina will have eight matches broadcasted on during the regular season (at Clemson, Furman, Dartmouth, Davidson, N.C. State, Auburn, at Georgia, Kentucky).