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Aug. 13, 2008

COLUMBIA, S.C. – South Carolina junior defender Blakely Mattern has been selected to the women’s soccer 2008 Coaches Preseason All-Southeastern Conference team, the conference office announced Wednesday.

This season marks the second year that the coaches have voted on a Preseason All-SEC team as Mattern makes her second consecutive appearance on the list.

Mattern (Simpsonville, S.C./JL Mann HS) led Carolina last year to its first NCAA Tournament appearance since 1998. She became the first sophomore in conference history to be named SEC Defensive Player of the Year. A former Soccer Buzz Freshman All-American, she picked up the first All-America honors in program history last season when Soccer Buzz named her an All-American and All-Southeast Region selection. A two-time All-SEC selection, Mattern has started every game of her career and was invited to attend the U.S. U-20 National Team camp this year.

“Blakely belongs among the best in the conference from her performance the past two seasons and to be recognized last year as the SEC Defensive Player of the Year,” South Carolina head coach Shelley Smith said. “The honor is well deserved as she continues to improve and show herself as a leader of our program. We have several players that were deservedly nominated, but the team announced shows how strong of a conference that the SEC is along with the type of quality players among the teams.”

Florida led all schools with three selections. The coaches preseason All-SEC team consists of a minimum of 11 players. Each SEC Head Soccer Coach voted for three forwards, three midfielders, three defenders, one goalkeeper and one at-large candidate. No ties were broken.

2008 SEC Soccer Coaches Preseason All-SEC Team

Player Pos. Ht. Cl. Hometown
Caitlin King, Auburn F 5-8 Jr. St. Louis, Mo.
Carrie Patterson, Georgia# F 5-7 Jr. Atlanta, Ga.
Kylee Rossi, Tennessee# F 5-8 Sr. Pennington, N.J.
Ameera Abdullah, Florida MF 5-3 Sr. Denver, Colo.
Ashlee Elliott, Florida MF 5-9 Jr. Corona, Calif.
Malorie Rutledge, LSU MF 5-5 Jr. Sharpsburg, Ga.
Katie Schulz, Vanderbilt MF 5-5 Sr. Peachtree City, Ga.
Lauren Hyde, Florida D 5-9 Jr. Carmel, Ind.
Kelli Corless, Georgia D 5-6 So. Acworth, Ga.
Danielle Johnson, Ole Miss D 5-5 Jr. Baton Rouge, La.
Blakely Mattern, South Carolina D 5-9 Jr. Simpsonville, S.C.
Jaimel Johnson, Tennessee GK 5-8 Sr. Dayton, Ohio

#-Unanimous Selection; Ties were not broken