Skip to main content
Partner logo
Mobile Icon Link Mobile Icon Link Mobile Icon Link Gamecocks+

Feb. 19, 2011

View Scoresheet in PDF Format Get Acrobat Reader

media-icon-photogallery.gif Photo Gallery

AUBURN, Ala. – Despite jumping out to an early 6-3 lead, No. 6 South Carolina could not hold off a comeback performance by Auburn, as the second-ranked Tigers took seven of the final 10 points to earn a 10-9 decision on Saturday at the Auburn University Equestrian Center.

The Gamecocks fall to 4-6, while the Tigers improve to 9-3.

“Hats off to Auburn today for a great win,” South Carolina head coach Boo Major said. “We looked good early, but Auburn came back with some really strong rides in Reining and Equitation, so congratulations to their riders.”

The Gamecocks looked good early, jumping out to an early 6-3 lead. In Equitation Over Fences, Kelsey Hart, Paige Dekko, and Alex Arute won their rides as South Carolina took the event 3-2.

South Carolina’s Horsemanship team continued its winning ways Saturday, winning the event 3-1. Senior Hailey Thornton and junior Maggie Fortune both won their rides, and redshirt freshman Johnna Letchworth improved to 7-1-1, while also being named MVP. Letchworth has not given up a point since losing at Georgia on Oct. 23, 2010.

With a three-point advantage heading into the final two events, the Gamecocks only needed to win five of the remaining ten rides to earn an outright win, but won only three, as Auburn extended its winning streak over South Carolina to three competitions.

Auburn’s comeback was spurred by a 4-1 win in Reining. Freshman Melia Blakely won the only Gamecock point, a 59-55.5 decision over the Tigers’ Kristin Hansen.

In Equitation on the Flat, Kimberly McCormack won her ride 76-65, over Auburn’s Anna Becker. Redshirt junior Victoria Middleton picked up a 78-77 win over Rachel Lin. Middleton’s one-point win marked her first victory since a 137-131 win on April 18, 2009 against Georgia at the Varsity Equestrian National Championships. Middleton went 3-0 at VENC’s that in 2009, and then missed the entire 2009-2010 season while recovering from an injury.

The Gamecocks have a short week to prepare for next weekend’s Best of the West Tournament, hosted by Fresno State in Fresno, Calif. South Carolina win compete against the Bulldogs, Baylor, and TCU in the three-day tournament.