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Nov. 20, 2009

LAS CRUCES, N.M. – The fourth-ranked South Carolina equestrian leads No. 6 Baylor 5-3 after two events at the New Mexico State Equestrian Center. The Gamecocks won Equitation on the Flat 3-1, and tied the Bears 2-2 in Horsemanship.

In Equitation on the Flat, the Gamecocks scored victories from seniors Alex Haskell, Megan Massaro, and Carly Babcock. Babcock was named MVP of the event, her second consecutive time earning the award. She also was named MVP in South Carolina’s win over Fresno State on Nov. 7.

In Horsemanship, South Carolina got victories from junior Hailey Thornton and sophomore Maggie Fortune. Fortune was named MVP of the event.

The Gamecocks conclude their competition with Baylor tomorrow, with both teams competing in Equitation Over Fences and Reining.

Saturday vs. No.6 Baylor (South Carolina leads 5-3)

In Equitation Over Fences, Eleanor Kunsman and Kimberly McCormack will be the only

Gamecocks to compete twice this weekend in the event. They will be joined by freshman Sara Green and senior Megan Massaro, who is 3-1 this season in the jumping event.

In Reining, the Gamecocks will use the lineup against New Mexico State as Lydia Roof, Chloe Gray, Annie McDonald, and freshman Amanda Pope will pull double-duty for South Carolina, as the four riders will also compete against New Mexico State.

Saturday vs. No. 9 New Mexico State

In Equitation Over Fences, the Gamecocks will turn to a pair of freshmen and seniors to compete against the Aggies. Seniors Eleanor Kunsman and Nicole Bourgeois will team up with freshmen Alex Arute and Tilden Brighton for South Carolina. In her first collegiate competition against Fresno State on Nov. 7, Arute was named MVP in Equitation Over Fences after she scored an 87-74 victory.

In Equitation on the Flat, senior Carly Babcock, coming off an MVP performance against Fresno State will lead the Gamecocks as they look to improve to 4-2 on the season in the Flat. Also riding for South Carolina will be seniors Alex Haskell and Megan Massaro, and freshman Kimberly McCormack.

In Horsemanship, senior Emily Bookwalter will lead junior Hailey Thornton and sophomores Maggie Fortune and Taylor Singmaster as the Gamecocks look to continue their two-match winning streak in the event.

Coming off a tie in Reining against Fresno State on Nov. 7, the Gamecocks will send juniorsLydia Roof and Chloe Gray, sophomore Annie McDonald, and freshman Amanda Pope to compete against New Mexico State. Pope won MVP of the event against Tennessee-Martin on Nov. 6 and is currently the only member of the Reining team to win the award this season.