Oct. 13, 2004
COLUMBIA, S.C. – Despite out-shooting Charlotte, 20-13, the seventh-ranked South Carolina men’s soccer team failed to score and fell to the 49ers, 1-0, on Wednesday night at Stone Stadium. The Gamecocks dropped their first home match of the season and dropped to 8-2-1 on the season. Charlotte improved to 6-4-1 and 4-1-1 in road matches.
“This game had trouble written all over it from the beginning,” South Carolina coach Mark Berson said. “We were coming off a big win against our archrival, and it’s also difficult to play these midweek games. With this young team, we’ve got to learn to be ready to play under all circumstances, both physically and emotionally. I certainly don’t want to take anything away from Charlotte, though. They played a tremendous game and deserved the win tonight.”
The 49ers used a first-half goal to secure the win. In the 35th minute, Floyd Franks dribbled down the right side and through multiple defenders before dumping the ball off to Mira Mupier inside the six-yard box. Mupier knocked the ball into the back of the net, scoring his first goal of the season.
It looked as if the Gamecocks would score the first goal of the match in the 28th minute. Following a Carolina free kick, freshman Sebastian Lindholmslipped the ball to sophomore Michael Sambursky, who knocked the ball off the cross bar and into the goal. The score was called back, though, as the referee ruled that Sambursky was offsides.
South Carolina continued to attack in the second half and created numerous chances to equalize the match. With just more than 30 minutes left to play, USC was awarded an indirect free kick just inside the 18-yard box on the left side. Lindholm took the kick and found freshman Jose Ramos curling near the top of the box. Ramos hit the shot, but it sailed just high.
Two minutes later, the Gamecocks nearly put one away. Following a corner kick, Carolina got three shots off during a scramble in the box. Junior Josh Alcala hit the crossbar and a pair of header shots by junior Greg Reece were saved by Charlotte defenders.
In the 85th minute, Charlotte was awarded a penalty kick due to a Carolina foul inside the box. Blake Smith took the shot, but it deflected off the crossbar.
Sophomore goalie Brad Guzan saved six shots in the match, while Charlotte came up with nine, including six by goalkeeper Josh Beachem.
In addition to out-shooting the 49ers, the Gamecocks had nine corner kicks to just five for Charlotte.
Wednesday marked the first time the season South Carolina failed to score. It was also the Gamecocks’ first loss of the 2004 season at home.
USC begins a three-match road swing on Saturday, Oct. 16, at North Carolina.