Skip to main content
Partner logo
Mobile Icon Link Mobile Icon Link Mobile Icon Link Gamecocks+

Oct. 20, 2006

The No. 16 South Carolina men’s soccer team plays host to the University of Central Florida on Saturday, Oct. 21, in Columbia. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. and South Carolina will honor its six seniors, Ayo Akinsete, Rob Charest, Makan Hislop, Ryan Leeton, Ralph Pace and Mike Sambursky, prior to the match. Saturday’s contest is the final home match of the regular season for the Gamecocks. A live audio broadcast of the match will be available on South Carolina’s official athletics web site, Matt Younginer (play-by-play) and Chris Riley (color analyst) will have the call. Fans can also follow the match live through Gametracker on the site.

The first 250 fans to arrive at Saturday’s match will receive a free Gamecock visor, courtesy of Verizon Wireless. Patrons with a military ID will be admitted for $3 and youth 18 and under who wear a soccer jersey to the match will be admitted for $1. The South Carolina team will hold an autograph session on the stadium concourse following the match.

South Carolina owns a 10-3-1 record overall and 3-2-1 mark in Conference matches. On Wednesday night the Gamecocks played No. 1 SMU to a 1-1 tie in Dallas. With 16 seconds to play and trailing 1-0, senior Ayo Akinsete scored the game-tying goal. Senior Mike Sambursky, who earned preseason All-America honors, leads South Carolina in scoring with 18 points on five goals and eight assists. Freshman Jeff Scannella has reached the 10-point plateau with three goals and four assists and stands as the Gamecocks’ second-leading scorer. Sophomore David Smith ( 2 g, 5 a) and Akinsete (4 g, 1 a) are tied for third on the club with nine points each. The Gamecocks’ offensive attack is fairly balanced. Ten different players have scored at least one goal and seven are credited with a minimum of two. South Carolina has out-shot its opponents, 198-168, and taken 69 corner kicks and while giving up 64. The Gamecocks have scored 25 goals and allowed 14. Sophomore goalkeeper Mike Gustavson has an 0.97 goals-against average and shares the team’s record of 10-3-1 after playing all 1,304:02. He has made 51 saves, including a season-high nine on Wednesday at SMU, and posted six shutouts.

Ayo Akinsete, Rob Charest, Makan Hislop, Ryan Leeton, Ralph Pace and Mike Sambursky have enjoyed tremendous success in their careers at South Carolina. The group has combined to play in 321 matches and make 289 starts. They have also scored 144 points on 56 goals and 37 assists, led Carolina to a pair of NCAA Tournaments, a Conference USA Championship and 43 wins. In 2006, the Gamecocks have spent the majority of the season ranked in the top 15 nationally.

South Carolina is No. 16 in the latest National Soccer Coaches’ Association of America Poll and No. 4 in the NSCAA South Region Poll. The Gamecocks are No. 16 according to College Soccer News and No. 13 in the Soccer Times poll.


>> South Carolina and UCF will play for the fifth time on Saturday night. The Gamecocks own a 3-0-1 advantage in the all-time series.

>> South Carolina defeated UCF, 4-1, in Orlando last season on Nov. 6. Senior Mike Sambursky scored two goals, including the game-winner against the Golden Knights.

>> In the only meeting in Columbia between USC and UCF, the Gamecocks won, 5-0, on Oct. 24, 1980.

>>Dating back to last season, the Gamecocks are 22-5-3 in their last 30 matches.

UCF brings a 3-7-2 overall record and a 1-2-2 C-USA matches to Columbia. The Golden Knights have enjoyed a week off after playing No. 1 SMU to a 2-2 draw last Saturday. Zak Boggs leads the team in scoring with nine points and a team-high four goals. Three other UCF players are tied for second with five points. Marcus Rein has played the majority of mintues in goal, registering a 1.96 goals-against average to go with 53 saves and three shutouts. In conference play, UCF defeated Memphis, 1-0, at home (Oct. 4), tied UAB, 2-2, at home (Oct. 7), fell 2-1 at Kentucky (Oct. 11) and tied SMU, 2-2, in Orlando (Oct. 14).

South Carolina has compiled 10 points and sits one point behind SMU in the Conference USA standings. The Mustangs have three matches remaining and the Gamecocks have two. Tulsa is in third place, one point behind South Carolina. UAB and Kentucky are tied for fourth with seven points. With six points apiece, Memphis and Florida International are tied for sixth. UCF currently stands in eighth with five points and Marshall is in ninth with four points. Following Saturday’s match against UCF (Oct. 21), South Carolina wraps up the regular season at Tulsa (Oct. 28).

South Carolina continues to be tough at home in 2006. The Gamecocks are 7-1-0 this season and have won seven straight at Stone Stadium. All-time, Carolina has won more than 80 percent of its home contests with a 263-57-17 record.