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Sept. 23, 2007

Final Stats


COLUMBIA, S.C. – The University of South Carolina men’s soccer team earned its fifth victory of the season on Sunday, defeating a talented Alabama A&M team, 2-0, at Stone Stadium. The win marked Carolina’s fourth shutout of the season, improving the Gamecocks overall record to 5-3-0 for the year, including a 4-0-0 home record. The Bulldogs fall to 2-5-0 with the loss. Junior midfielder Spencer Lewis scored the game winner for the Gamecocks, while freshman forward Sam Arthur contributed Carolina’s second goal of the match. Lewis’ goal marked his first of the season, while Arthur improved his team-leading total to five for the year.

“This is a good win against a solid Alabama A&M team,” South Carolina head coach Mark Berson said. “A&M has a ton of talent on its squad and is a threat to score at any time in the game. I was very happy with the way our team kept the game in front of us, and kept the ball very effectively for long stretches of time, which was key for us today. We again had a lot of players who contributed to this win, and I’m pleased to see so many of our players able to contribute.”

A number of Gamecocks contributed to the scoring effort against the Bulldogs. In his third appearance this season, senior defender Daniel Upchurch assisted Lewis in the opening half for his first helper of the year, while senior midfielder J.D. Moon tallied his second assist of the season on Arthur’s tally late in the second half.

Carolina tallied 10 shots, including six on goal in the victory. Freshman forward Blake Brettschneider paced the attack with two shots on net, while Lewis, Arthur, Upchurch and David Smith each contributed one shot on goal. Alabama A&M’s Lwazi Maziya led the Bulldogs with two shots.

Defensively for Carolina, freshman goalkeeper Jimmy Maurer earned his third shutout of the season, collecting four saves in net. Alabama A&M goalkeeper Paull Musoke also tallied four saves, allowing two goals in the loss.

The first half saw the teams trading long stretches of possession in the middle third of the field. Carolina found its offensive rhythm in the 15th minute when Arthur missed on a shot just wide of the net, and Upchurch followed minutes later with a solid strike on the Bulldog goal. The Gamecocks continued to hold possession in their offensive third of the field, as Upchurch and Lewis connected in the 28th minute on a cross and header into the back of the net for a 1-0 Carolina lead.

The one-goal advantage stood through the half and into the 66th minute when Carolina was granted a free kick opportunity just outside of the Bulldog 18-yard box. Smith hit a well-placed strike over Musoke, but the ball found the top of the goal, grazing the crossbar and falling just over the net.

Maurer made two crucial saves in the 67th and 70th minute of the match, and Carolina continued to pressure the Bulldog defensive third of the field. In the 81st minute, the Gamecocks were again awarded a free kick 25 yards from the goal, and Moon chipped a perfect ball on the set piece to Arthur who connected in front of the net for the deciding 2-0 Carolina advantage.

South Carolina travels to UAB on Saturday, Sept. 29, for its first game of the 2007 Conference USA season. The team’s last met during the 2006 C-USA Championship Tournament, with UAB claiming a 3-2 victory. Game time is set for 8 p.m. ET in Birmingham.