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March 7, 2005

Fayetteville, Ark. – The South Carolina Gamecock softball team will kick-off the SEC season this week as they face the Arkansas Lady Razorbacks for a three-game series. USC will play the Lady ‘Backs in Fayetteville in a 5:00 p.m. (EST) doubleheader and a single game on Wednesday at 3:00 p.m. (EST). The games can be heard live via the Internet on

USC leads the series against Arkansas 13-9 and last year swept the Lady ‘Backs in Columbia. Arkansas finished sixth in the West last year in the conference while th Gamecocks finished fourth in the East.

Carolina is 15-9 on the season and is 6-2 in SEC openers. This also marks the third time USC has opened the conference season against Arkansas and in those openers, the Gamecocks are 2-0.

The Lady Razorbacks are 10-11 and are coming off of back-to-back wins over Northwestern State and Mississippi Valley. Rachel LeMaster leads the team with a .406 average and has 26 hits on the year with 10 runs. Valanna Lyons is 6-6 in 12 appearances and has a 3.35 ERA.

USC is led by outfielder Jessica Josker who is hitting . 440 with 40 hits, 17 runs and 16 RBIs. Josker hit three home runs this past weekend at the Buzz Classic, including her first career long ball ever.

Meghan Cornett and McKenna Hughes are on the heels of Josker as they are hitting .392 and .347 respectively. Hughes leads the team in runs scored with 18 and in RBIs with 23.