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Sept. 11, 2008

University of South Carolina women’s basketball head coach Dawn Staley announced today the Gamecocks’ 2008-09 schedule, which includes 12 teams that advanced to the postseason in 2007-08. The 15-game home slate features three of the teams in last year’s NCAA Final Four, as Connecticut, Stanford and Southeastern Conference foe LSU will visit the Colonial Life Arena in the first year of the Dawn Staley era.

“It is a challenging but exciting schedule for our team,” Staley said. “We will be tested early against UConn and Stanford, which will help us prepare for an SEC schedule that includes 10 games against teams that were in the postseason last year. The Thanksgiving trip to Cancun also will be an important time for our team and staff to bond.”

South Carolina will open the season on the road for the first time since the 2004-05 season as the Gamecocks head to State College, Pa., for a Nov. 16 afternoon match-up with Penn State, which narrowly defeated the Gamecocks at home last year. Archrival Clemson kicks off the home schedule for the Gamecocks on Wed., Nov. 19, and Davidson visits on Mon., Nov. 24.

The Gamecocks will spend Thanksgiving in Cancun, Mexico, joining Fordham, UNC Wilmington and Ohio at the Cancun Thanksgiving Classic. South Carolina takes on Fordham on Fri., Nov. 28, with the consolation and championship games coming the next day.

After a trip to Wake Forest on Dec. 3, South Carolina opens a six-game home stand against High Point on Fri., Dec. 5. The Gamecocks have a final tune-up against USC-Upstate on Tue., Dec. 16, before a grueling three-day stretch that spans the Christmas holiday.

NCAA runner-up Stanford makes its first trip to Columbia for a Fri., Dec. 19, game, and WNIT participant Charlotte arrives two days later. Connecticut, which also played in the NCAA Final Four, makes its Columbia debut on Sun., Dec. 28. The home stand wraps up with Jacksonville on Tue., Dec. 30, and the Gamecocks close their non-conference schedule with a trip to N.C. State, a WNIT semifinalist, on Jan. 4.

South Carolina opens SEC play with four games against postseason teams, beginning with a home tilt against Auburn on Thu., Jan. 8. The Gamecocks head down the road to Georgia, which finished 2007-08 ranked 24th in USA Today/ESPN Coaches Poll, on Jan. 11, then return home to face Florida on Thu., Jan. 15. The Gamecocks travel to back-to-back national champion Tennessee for a Jan. 18 contest and continue the road trip at Mississippi on Jan. 22.

NCAA Sweet 16 participant Vanderbilt visits the Colonial Life Arena on Sun., Jan. 15, and the Gamecocks close our their tour of the 2008 NCAA Final Four by hosting LSU on Thu., Jan. 29.

The remainder of the SEC schedule includes home games against Mississippi, Alabama and Kentucky and road trips to Kentucky, Arkansas, Florida and Mississippi. The SEC Tournament will be held in Little Rock, Ark., beginning Thu., Mar. 5.

In all, the Gamecocks will face teams from eight different conferences, including the SEC. Staley will be familiar with a pair of Atlantic 10 Conference teams in Fordham and Charlotte, and she will quickly be introduced to the Atlantic Coast Conference, which has three teams playing the Gamecocks this season.

Season tickets are on sale now, starting at $50 for general admission or $100 for the Family Four pack, which is less than $2 per game. Tickets are available by calling 1-800-4SC-FANS or by clicking here.

Complete Schedule in PDF Format Get Acrobat Reader