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April 16, 2010

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WACO, Texas – The third-seeded South Carolina Hunter Seat team fell 6-2 to No. 2 seed Auburn in the quarterfinals of the 2010 Varsity Equestrian National Championships in Waco, hosted by Baylor University at the Heart O’ Texas Fair Coliseum.

“We’re disappointed that we didn’t tonight, but hats off to Auburn for a great competition,” head coach Boo Major said. “We had some good rides tonight, and our girls should be proud for the way they competed.

The Gamecocks spotted the Tigers a 4-0 lead, after Auburn swept South Carolina in Equitation on the Flat.

“I was very pleased with the way our flat girls rode tonight,” Major said. “With the exception of one mistake on our part, I really believe our girls rode well and I believe things were a lot closer than the scores reflect”

Needing a 4-0 sweep in Equitation Over Fences to force a tiebreaker, the Gamecocks only won two of four points, courtesy of wins by senior Megan Massaro and freshman Kimberly McCormack. Massaro was three-for-four this weekend between Equitation on the Flat and Over Fences, while McCormack was a perfect two-for-two in Equitation Over Fences.

“In the jumping tonight, all of our girls rode extremely well,” Major said. “Kimberly McCormack had a great day for us as usual, and Alex Arute had an outstanding ride that she very easily could have won, so both of those girls should be proud of their performances this weekend.”

Major took a moment to point out Massaro’s outstanding weekend for the Gamecocks.

“Very disappointed for our seniors to lose tonight,” Major said. “Megan Massaro won three of her rides, and in all honestly she rode well enough to go 4-for-4, so I’m very proud of her performance this weekend. She’s had some back luck here and there this season, but she’ll be able to go out knowing she ended her career in a way that reflects how good of a rider she truly is.”

Eliminated from championship contention, the Gamecocks will compete against Texas A&M Saturday morning for third-place in the Hunter Seat Bracket.

“Third place is not what we wanted to be competing for,” Major said. “But our girls are going to come out hard tomorrow to end their season with a win, so hopefully we have some great rides from everybody tomorrow.”