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Aug. 14, 2007

COLUMBIA, S.C. – The South Carolina women’s soccer team is receiving votes in the Soccer Buzz preseason poll released Tuesday, marking the second time in school history that the Gamecocks cracked the preseason poll. Carolina is one of three teams in the Southeastern Conference to receive votes in the poll and is ranked sixth in the Southeast Region.

This marks the fourth time that Carolina has received votes by the association. Head Coach Shelley Smith’s squad made two appearances last season, garnering votes the week of Sept. 25 and cracking the Top 30 for the first time in school history the next week when they landed at No. 29. The only other time the Gamecocks received votes in the Soccer Buzz preseason poll was at the start of the 1999 season.

South Carolina is coming off of a 2006 season that set the school record for goals against average (0.69). The team finished with an 11-6-5 record and went undefeated at home, posting an 8-0-3 record at Stone Stadium. The Gamecocks return 20 letterwinners after advancing past the opening round of the conference tournament for this first time.

The Gamecocks open the season at preseason No. 1 North Carolina at 12 noon on Sept. 1. The Tar Heels are the defending national champions. South Carolina’s home opener is Sept. 3 against East Tennessee State.