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Nov. 6, 2009

Final Stats

ORANGE BEACH, Ala.Kim Miller hit a penalty kick in the 11th minute and South Carolina shutout top-seeded Florida 1-0 at the Orange Beach Soccer Complex to advance to the program’s first SEC Tournament championship game. The win was just the second ever over the Gators, the other time occurring in a 1-0 overtime win in 2002.

A first-time champion will be crowned Sunday when second-seed LSU faces the Gamecocks in the nationally televised final at 3 p.m (ESPNU). Neither program has played for the title, and South Carolina will look to knock off the third and final team that earned a victory over the Gamecocks in the regular season. South Carolina also lost to Georgia and Florida, but the Gamecocks earned redemption in the first two rounds of the SEC Tournament with wins against the Bulldogs and Gators.

Miller hit her penalty kick at 10:36 after Lindsay Small was taken down in the box. The PK was her second in as many games as the senior All-SEC performer had one blocked in the first half against Georgia, but she rebounded to hit the game winner Friday.

Lindsay Small did a good job to get in the box,” Miller said. “I missed a PK yesterday when (Georgia’s) Michelle Betos made a great save. Today I had confidence in myself and so did my teammates. I knew I’d get it in. I knew how much this one means to the team. I was focused and hit it where I wanted it to go.”

Junior Mollie Patton earned her 13th shutout of the year and had two saves in the match. Florida held a 7-6 shot advantage, but South Carolina held a 3-2 shots on goal advantage.

“We worked on this all year,” Miller said. “We really wanted this. The whole team deserved it. (Playing for the title) means everything.”