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Sept. 30, 2008

COLUMBIA, S.C. – South Carolina’s women’s soccer team, under head coach Shelley Smith, returned to the national rankings this week after a 1-0-1 record to start SEC play. The Gamecocks come in at No. 24 in both the NSCAA and Soccer America polls.

The Gamecocks used its first regular season win against Tennessee and tie against conference rival Georgia to jump up in the coach’s poll after receiving votes last week from the NSCAA. Carolina also re-entered Soccer America’s poll after dropping out last week from a No. 20 ranking in week four. South Carolina is also ranked for the third consecutive week in Soccer Buzz magazine’s poll, dropping one spot to No. 30.

Coach Smith’s team also moved up to sixth in both Southeast regional polls, jumping Miami in Soccer Buzz’s region rankings and moving into a tie with UCF in the NSCAA’s ranking.

Florida and LSU join the Gamecocks as the only other conference schools in the national polls this week. The Gators are ranked No. 15 in the NSCAA coach’s poll. The Tigers, unranked by the NSCAA, have a high spot of No. 15 by Soccer America.

South Carolina (7-1-3, 1-0-1 SEC) returns to action this weekend when they travel to Kentucky and Vanderbilt for the first SEC road trip of the season. Kickoff Friday is scheduled for 7 p.m. in Lexington, Ky., with Sunday’s match currently slated for a 3 p.m. (ET) start in Nashville, Tenn.