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South Carolina Media Notes

COLUMBIA, S.C. – Winners of two straight and four of its last five matches, the South Carolina men’s soccer team has re-entered the national rankings this week, tied at No. 25 in the Soccer Times poll (Oct. 2). Carolina most recently defeated UAB on Saturday in the Conference USA opener for both schools. Sophomore midfielder Jeff Scannella earned Top Drawer Soccer Team Of The Week accolades for his game winner against the Blazers. Freshman goalkeeper Jimmy Maurer also garnered recognition as the Conference USA Defensive Player of the Week after collecting six saves on Saturday in his fourth shutout of the season. Carolina hits the road on Wednesday to face non-conference foe Davidson at 7 p.m. The Gamecocks own a 17-6-1 lead in the all-time series between the two schools. Carolina brings a 6-3-0 record into the contest while Davidson is 1-7-0 for the year.

South Carolina head coach Mark Berson on Wednesday’s game at Davidson: “This is a demanding week for us with road games at UAB, Davidson and FIU in an eight-day span. We played well on Saturday night in Birmingham. Davidson is always a tough match. They have a disciplined team and they always have solid personnel. Our challenge is to keep improving – and we come out of the UAB game with a number of things that we need to work on.”

After a solid victory over league rival UAB, South Carolina has re-entered the National Top 25 poll this week. USC ranks tied for 25th in the Soccer Times poll.

The Wildcats enter Wednesday’s match with the Gamecocks with a 1-7-1 overall record, having dropped their last three games. The home contest at Alumni Field marks the first for Davidson in their last six matches. Robby Hoak paces the Wildcat offense with three goals in seven starts this season, while goalkeepers Robby Goldberry and Ben Ashton have split time between the pipes. Goldsberry has collected a team best 28 saves in net.

For the first time in his Carolina career, sophomore midfielder Jeff Scannella has been selected to the Top Drawer Soccer National Team of the Week. He was honored for his game-winning tally in South Carolina’s Conference USA season-opening victory against UAB on Saturday. Scannella, an Alpharetta, Ga., native, has two goals this season in nine starts for the Gamecocks.

Freshman goalkeeper Jimmy Maurer was named the Conference USA Defensive Player of the Week (Oct. 1). Maurer collected six saves and earned his fourth shutout of the season in the Gamecocks 1-0 victory in their 2007 league opener at UAB on Saturday. His 0.89 goals against average ranks fourth among Conference USA competitors, while his .843 save percentage ranks third. Maurer recently earned adidas Gamecock Classic Defensive MVP honors for recording his second shutout victory of the season in a 2-0 win over Lipscomb (Sept. 16). He followed with a season-best 10 saves against Duke (Sept. 19) and four saves against an offensive minded Alabama A&M (Sept. 23) team.

Sophomore midfielder Jeff Scannella scored two minutes into the match and freshman goalkeeper Jimmy Maurer collected six saves in net, as the South Carolina men’s soccer team won its Conference USA opener, defeating UAB, 1-0, on Saturday night on the road in Birmingham. With the win, the Gamecocks improve their overall record to 6-3-0, including a 1-0-0 C-USA slate. The victory marked USC’s fifth shutout of the season.

The Gamecocks are ranked fourth in the South Region this week (Oct. 1), according to the NSCAA. Carolina trails top-ranked Wake Forest, Duke (2) and Furman (3) in the South Region rankings.

Carolina freshman forwards Sam Arthur and Blake Brettschneider have certainly lived up to preseason expectations. The duo has combined for seven of Carolina’s 13 goals on the year and 44 shots this season. Through eight games, one half of the duo has registered at least one point in all six of Carolina’s victories, while they have both contributed points in two contests. Arthur leads the Gamecocks with five goals, while Brettshneider has two goals and a team best three assists for the year.

After the first full week of Conference USA league play, South Carolina is tied with Marshall for the top spot in the conference standings with identical 1-0-0 C-USA records. Memphis, Tulsa, SMU and UCF are all 0-0-1, Kentucky is yet to play a league contest and UAB and FIU are both 0-1-0. Overall, Memphis has the highest winning percentage (.750, 5-1-2), while Marshall has the most overall wins for the year (7-3-0).

As a team, the Gamecocks rank fifth in the league with 110 shots taken, while Carolina’s five shutouts on the year is the highest total of any conference competitor. Freshman Blake Brettschneider is second in C-USA in shots (27) and third in shots per game (3.00), while classmate Sam Arthur is tied for third in the league with 12 points (5G-2A) and is tied for second with five goals this season. In the net, rookie goalkeeper Jimmy Maurer ranks third in save percentage (.843), first in saves (43) and first with four shutouts for the year.