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Sept. 5, 2014

South Carolina Hosts Mercer
Eugene E. Stone III Stadium – Columbia, S.C.
Sun., Sept. 7, 7 PM
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14 SC Men’s Soccer Notes-9/5 Get Acrobat Reader

14 SC Men’s Soccer Stats-9/3 Get Acrobat Reader

Brad Muller’s feature on Jeff Addai

Info on SEC Network + games

South Carolina Team Notes

  • South Carolina brought back 18 letter-winners to go with nine newcomers for 2014.
  • The Gamecocks return 80 percent of their goals and 76 percent of their assists from last year.
  • Included in that returning group is the top-two goal scorers (Jeffrey Torda and Mahamoudou Kaba) and the top-two assist distributors (Kurtis Turner and Ryan Arambula).
  • Only one goalkeeper of three who played in 2013 is not back from last year (Chris Duzan, 30:19).
  • Four Conference USA award winners return, including defenders Kaba and Braeden Troyer as well as 2013 All-Freshman Team members Turner (midfielder) and Marco Velez (goalkeeper).
  • Both Kaba and Troyer made the C-USA Preseason team, with Kaba garnering the Defensive Player of the Year title.
  • The Gamecocks stand with an all-time record of 453-200-68 (.675).

Gamecocks Celebrating 10 Years in Conference USA

  • The 2014 season is South Carolina’s 10th as a men’s soccer affiliate member of Conference USA.
  • In 2011, the Garnet and Black captured the league’s regular-season crown, sharing it with UAB.
  • Twice, the Gamecocks have won the league’s tournament (2005 and 2010).
  • South Carolina’s student-athletes have taken 40 all-league nods, with 14 coming on the first team.
  • In C-USA outings, South Carolina owns a 35-23-16 (.581) mark. At Stone Stadium, that record is 19-11-6 (.611).

Troyer Named a Senior CLASS Award Candidate

  • On Sept. 2, the Senior CLASS Award announced its 30 candidates for its men’s award, naming Gamecock Braeden Troyer to the list.
  • Troyer leads all SC returners with 10 career goals, tied for seventh in Gamecock history during the Conference USA era (since 2005).
  • Twice he’s been named to the C-USA All-Academic Team, and he has three All-C-USA nods, (`12 second team, `11 & `13 third team).
  • He also made the 2011 Conference USA All-Freshman Team.
  • On two occasions, CoSIDA has voted him on the Capital One Academic All-District 4 team.
  • In the classroom, he’s been a member of the Honors College at South Carolina and earned three C-USA Academic Medals, given to student-athletes with a 3.75 GPA.
  • He’s a co-captain in 2014 (along with Mahamoudou “Mo” Kaba).

Berson Ranks Among Top Coaches in NCAA History

  • The only head coach in South Carolina men’s soccer history, Mark Berson ranks as one of four coaches in NCAA Division I history with 450 wins at one institution.
  • With 464 career wins (including 11 in 1977 at The Citadel), he’s 7th on the NCAA Division I and 18th on the NCAA All-Divisions wins list, two in back of the retired Schellas Hyndman (SMU).
  • He’s coached 11 players who have captured 13 All-America nods at South Carolina.

The Gamecocks Shine in the Classroom as Well

  • South Carolina’s 18 returners have a total of 30 SEC Academic Honor Roll certificates and 31 Conference USA Academic Honor Roll notations between them.
  • Of those, 10 are Conference USA Academic Medal mentions, which is awarded to student-athletes with a 3.75 cumulative GPA or higher.
  • Four of the seniors, Robert Beebe, Mahamoudou “Mo” Kaba, Asa Kryst and Braeden Troyer have three certificates each.
  • Troyer has three of those Academic Medals, while both Ryan Arambula and Jeffrey Torda have two.

We Scheduled Strong Foes

  • Of the 17 regular-season matches scheduled this season for the Gamecocks, 12 come against top-100 RPI teams in the final 2013 report from the NCAA.
  • Seven rank in the top 50, four from C-USA (Charlotte, UAB, Old Dominion & New Mexico).
  • Four foes made the NSCAA/Continental Tire Preseason Top 25, well, 26 when you count Old Dominion tying for the 25th spot with Navy.
  • The Gamecocks are 1-0-0 against a ranked team in 2014, beating No. 25/18 Clemson.

Recent Dominance of Archrival Clemson

  • Since 2007, the Gamecocks are 6-2 against their archrivals, with both of the losses coming in double overtime on the road (2011 & 2013).
  • The last four matches at Stone Stadium have gone to the Gamecocks, three coming in shutouts.
  • It’s the best stretch since the Gamecocks went 10-4 from 1985-95 against the Tigers, with three of the wins in that stretch coming in NCAA Tournament play.

Scouting Mercer

  • In its first year as a member of the Southern Conference, Mercer enters with a 2-1 mark, fresh off a 1-0 double overtime win at Georgia Southern on Thursday night.
  • SC will be the second C-USA team Mercer has faced, as it fell to UAB 2-1 last Sunday at home.
  • Three times under 7th-year head coach Brad Ruzzo, the Bears have posted winning records.
  • The team lost six starters from last year’s 5-14-1 squad,
  • The Bears lost their top two scorers, Ehjayson Henry and Juan Jose Morales, who combined for 12 of Mercer’s 18 goals.
  • Also gone is Joey Heavner, who posted a team-high six assists, as well as Ryan King’s four assists.
  • Senior goalkeeper Greg Ranjitsingh returns after making 98 saves a year ago, posting a 1.65 goals against average.
  • Ranjitsingh had three clean sheets and played every minute in goal in 2013 and already has two shutouts to his credit this year.
  • Freshman Will Bagrou has two of the Bears’ four goals on the year, while six others have the other two goals and four assists.
  • Sophomore Jordan Duru leads Mercer with nine shots and six shots on goal.

Series History vs. Mercer

  • The Gamecocks are 6-0 against the Bears in history, winning all six previous meetings at home.
  • It is Mercer’s second trip to Stone Stadium, with the Bears falling 4-1 in their last trip in 1999.
  • The Gamecocks have scored four or more goals in five of the matches.

Gamecocks Have a Rich History in NCAA Tournament

  • On 20 occasions, the Gamecocks made an NCAA Tournament, the most in Conference USA.
  • South Carolina is 16-19-1 in the tourney, making two College Cups in 1988 and 1993.
  • Eleven times, the Gamecocks made the NCAA Tournament Round of 16.

Notes from SC’s Season Opening Win vs. Belmont

  • Kurtis Turner’s 25-yard rebound in the 106th put SC over Belmont, SC’s 31st season-opening win.
  • The Gamecocks outshot the Bruins 26-5 and had a 14-0 advantage in corner kicks.
  • None of Belmont’s shots came on goal, while the Gamecocks made BU’s keeper make seven stops.
  • The attendance of 5,415 ranks as the 4th-best in Stone Stadium history and 8th in site history.