Sept. 7, 2006
The South Carolina men’s soccer team hosts the adidas/Gamecock Classic this weekend. Action begins on Friday, Sept. 8, as Winthrop takes on Alabama A&M at 5 p.m. The Gamecocks face Temple at 7:30 p.m.
On Sunday, Sept. 10, Winthrop and Temple square off at Noon with Carolina and Alabama A&M following at 2:30 p.m.
To get all of the latest information, visit adidas/Gamecock Classic Central.
Fans can follow all matches live through Gametracker on South Carolina’s official athletics web site, USCsports.com. A live audio broadcast for both of the Gamecocks’ matches is also available on the site.
SCOUTING THE GAMECOCKS
South Carolina brings a 3-1-0 record and three-game win streak into the weekend. On Tuesday night, the Gamecocks defeated Centenary, 3-2, in a weather-delayed match at Stone Stadium. Seniors Mike Sambursky, Rob Charest and Ayo Akinsete scored for the Garnet and Black. The Gamecocks moved up to No. 21 in the latest National Soccer Coaches Association of America Top 25 Poll after starting the season at No. 24. Carolina is No. 5 in the always-stacked South Region. Senior co-captain Mike Sambursky leads the Gamecocks in scoring with eight points on two goals and four assists. Sophomore David Smith has six points (2 g, 2 a) through three games and senior Rob Charest has five (2 g, 1 a). Sophomore goalkeeper Mike Gustavson, a preseason All-America pick by Soccer America, sports a 1.50 goals-against average to go with 12 saves and two shutouts.
South Carolina is ranked No. 21 in this week’s National Soccer Coaches Association of America Top 25 Poll. The Gamecocks opened the year at No. 24 before rising three notches in the second poll. The Gamecocks are one of four Conference USA teams that appear in this week’s NSCAA Poll. SMU is No. 3, Kentucky comes in at No. 20 and Memphis is tied for No. 23. UAB is No. 17 in this week’s Soccer America poll.
Friday, Sept. 8, at 7:30 p.m. (vs. Temple)
â€¢ First 250 fans receive a Gamecock soccer key chain
â€¢ Carolina Alumni get in for $3 with membership card
Sunday, Sept. 10, at 2:30 p.m. (vs. Alabama A&M)
Ticket Promotions: Carolina Crazy
â€¢ Wear garnet and admission is $3
â€¢ $3 admission with Georgia football game ticket stub
After a slow offensive start in 2005, Carolina’s goal production through four matches is drastically better. Five different played have scored a total of nine goals this season. A year ago, the Gamecocks were able to muster just one goal in their first five contests.
APPRECIATE THE ASSISTANCE
Senior Mike Sambursky has four assists through four matches this season, bringing his career total to 18. The Preseason Conference USA Offensive Player of the Year needs just two more helpers to break into the top 10 in school history. Sambursky had eight assists as a junior in 2005 and six during his sophomore season in 2004.
THE 400 CLUB
South Carolina head coach Mark Berson is closing in on career win No. 400. With three victories this season, Berson’s career total stands at 394. The Carolina head coach entered the 2006 campaign with 391 career victories in 29 seasons as a collegiate coach, including 28 years at South Carolina. He also ranked fifth on the career wins list among active Division I coaches and 21st all-time. Entering the season his .708 winning percentage is 11th among active D-1 coaches. Berson’s record at Carolina is now 382-144-45. His career mark stands at 393-149-45, including one season at The Citadel.
Rob Charest has picked up his offensive production to start his senior season. After scoring a total of five points during his junior season, Charest has matched that mark in the Gamecocks’ first four games this season. The Monson, Mass., native has scored two goals and recorded one assist.
ADIDAS-GAMECOCK CLASSIC FIELD
THE TEMPLE OWLS
Atlantic-10 member Temple owns a 1-1-1 record entering the weekend. The Owls defeated Philadelphia, 2-1, in their season opener, played to a 2-2 tie at UNLV and dropped a 2-0 decision to Denver.
Senior defender Matt Maher, junior midfielder Mike Minai and defender Chris Shelton have done the goal scoring thus far for Temple. Maher leads the club with four points on two goals while Minai and Shelton have each scored one goal. Sophomore Bryant Hosler is the starter in goal. Hosler had made 17 saves and let in five goals for a 1.62 goals-against average.
David MacWilliams is currently in seventh season as head coach at Temple. Friday’s match between Temple and South Carolina marks the first ever on the soccer pitch.
ALABAMA A&M BULLDOGS
Alabama A&M, an independent, comes to Columbia with a 1-3-0 record. The Bulldogs opened the year with an impressive 2-1 win at Virginia Commonwealth, which is currently ranked No. 19 by Soccer America. They have since lost three matches, falling to James Madison, 4-3, at College of Charleston, 4-1, and to UNC Wilmington, 7-1.
Starting goalkeeper Mlondi Mdluli missed last weekend’s games at College of Charleston after returning home to Swaziland for a family emergency. On Monday, the staff and team learned Mdluli had been killed in a car accident.
Junior Mosito Ranko leads the Bulldogs with seven points on three goals and one assist. Junior MfanaFuthi Bhembe had scored three goals as well.
Salah Yousif is in his 18th season as the head coach at Alabama A&M. South Carolina leads the all-time series between the two teams, 3-2. The Gamecocks defeated the Bulldogs, 3-2, the last time they played in 2004.
Winthrop (3-1-0) opened its season with three wins before falling in its last match, 1-0, to at Appalachian State. The Eagles rolled past North Florida, 5-1, in their season opener, shut out Gardner-Webb, 5-0, and Wofford, 4-0.
Junior Saidi Isaac spearheads the Winthrop attack with 10 points on four goals and two assists. Sophomore Daniel Revivo is second in scoring with eight points (3 g, 2 a) while Freshmen Matthew Skonicki (3 g, 1 a) and Stephen Nsereko (2 g, 3 a) both have seven points.
Sophomore goalkeeper Patrick Mitrovich has an 0.26 goals-against average to go with 14 saves and a pair of clean sheets.
Head coach Rich Posipanko is in his 18th season at Winthrop.