Sept. 30, 2013
COLUMBIA, S.C. –
Fresh off a 2-1 win in its Conference-USA opener at Charlotte, South Carolina (3-4-2, 1-0-0 C-USA) steps out of conference play to host Presbyterian (2-5-0, 0-1-0 Big South). The final non-conference match of Gamecocks’ season is slated for Tuesday at 7 p.m.
Carolina Quick Hits
South Carolina is in its 36th season of varsity soccer in 2013.
South Carolina head coach Mark Berson is in his 37th season overall and his 36th season as head coach of the Gamecocks. He is assisted by former players Spencer Lewis and Joey Worthen, both in their second season. Tim O’Toole is the volunteer assistant coach.
The Gamecocks will play 11 regular-season contests at Stone Stadium this season, including the annual Gamecock Classic and four Conference USA matches.
South Carolina’s first road win of the season could not have come at a better time. The Gamecocks scored two unanswered goals to defeat (RV) Charlotte 2-1 on Friday, Sept. 27. Junior defenders Mahamoudou Kaba and Braeden Troyer provided the offense. Troyer’s unassisted game winner came off a rebound from a corner kick in the 81st minute. Prior to the Gamecocks’ two tallies, the 49ers had allowed just four goals over the course of their first seven matches of the season. Freshman keeper Marco Velez earned his first career win in the Garnet and Black.
In the 27th edition of the Gamecock Classic on Sept. 20 and 22, South Carolina played 220 minutes of soccer and finished the weekend 0-0-2. Sophomore midfielder Jeffrey Torda scored his second goal of the season in the fifth minute against USF, but the Bulls tied the match and played out to a 1-1 tie on Friday, Sept. 20. Less than 48 hours later, the Gamecocks faced Dartmouth and again went the distance, this time playing to a 0-0 draw. South Carolina outshot their opponents 36-20 over the course of the weekend.
To end their three-game road stretch, the Gamecocks dropped a Sunday afternoon contest 0-3 at Rutgers on Sept. 15.
South Carolina faced No. 12 St. John’s on Friday, Sept. 13, without Conference-USA preseason honoree Troyer (suspension for red card vs. Coastal Carolina) and starting keeper Robert Beebe (injury). The teams played 60 scoreless minutes before the Red Storm recorded a tally for the 1-0 win. The Gamecocks who faced a 7-2 shot deficit at the half, ultimately outshot St. John’s 12-11. Velez notched his first career start in Beebe’s place between the posts.
Freshman Ive Burnett scored his first career goal for the Garnet and Black in the fourth minute against Coastal Carolina on Tues., Sept 10. The Gamecocks couldn’t hold on to the early 1-0 lead and dropped the road match 1-3.
Senior J.P. Rafferty recorded the first multi-goal game of his career on Friday, Sept. 6, in a 5-2 win over High Point. Rafferty’s two second-half goals came within 15 minutes of each other. Freshman Kurtis Turner scored the first points of his Gamecock career against High Point, assisting on three goals in the non-conference win.
The five South Carolina goals against High Point are the most scored by the Gamecocks since a 5-2 road win at East Carolina on Oct. 5, 2005.
South Carolina came from behind, but ultimately fell to Clemson 2-1 in double overtime on Sept. 2. Kaba scored the first goal of his career on a header off a Ryan Arambula corner kick to level the match in the second half. Clemson tallied the golden goal in the 102nd minute for the win.
The Gamecocks improved to 30-5-1 in season openers with a 1-0 shutout victory over East Tennessee State on Aug. 30. Torda netted the unassisted gamewinner in the 26th minute.
South Carolina posted two shutouts in exhibition play this season, a 1-0 win over Mercer and a 2-0 win over Elon.
Three different Gamecocks scored during preseason play, junior forward Asa Kryst, sophomore midfielder Jeffrey Torda and senior midfielder J.P. Rafferty.
The Garnet and Black posted 31 shots in the pair of matches, with a decided 23-6 advantage over Mercer. The Gamecocks preferred quality over quantity against Elon, putting seven of their eight shots on frame.
Nine newcomers (seven freshmen and two transfers) join 15 letterwinners and four starters from the 2012 squad.
Junior Braden Troyer was selected to the Preseason All-Conference USA squad in August. Last season, the Columbia, S.C., native earned second-team all-conference honors, was named to the Capital One Academic All-District 4 Team and earned a spot on the C-USA All-Academic Team.
Last season, the Gamecocks finished 5-11-2 (2-5-1 C-USA), a year removed from earning a share of the 2011 Conference USA Regular Season championship after a 6-1-1 conference campaign.
After winning its first two matches of the season against USC Upstate and on the road at No. 24 Wilmington, Presbyterian has dropped its last five matches to start the season 2-5-0. Last week, the Blue Hose suffered a 2-3 loss on the road in double overtime to Georgia Southern. The Eagles netted the game-winner with less than two minutes remaining in the final period. Over the weekend, Presbyterian dropped a 1-2 contest to Mercer. In their lone Big South match of the season, the Blue Hose fell to Coastal Carolina 0-4.
Junior forward Josh Carter paces the offense with nine points on four goals and one assist. Between the posts, redshirt senior Tyler Beadle has played the majority of the minutes, collecting 47 saves but allowing 19 goals in six games. Overall, the Blue Hose have been outscored 24-9 by their opponents.
The Gamecocks and Blue Hose have not played since a 1-1 draw in 2008. South Carolina has never lost to Presbyterian, holding a 10-0-1 record all-time.
Up Next for the Gamecocks
South Carolina resumes Conference USA matches on Sunday, Oct. 6., when they take on No. 15 Tulsa at 1 p.m., at the Graveyard.