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Sept. 7, 2014

Final Stats | Photo Gallery media-icon-photogallery.gif

Coach Berson

COLUMBIA, S.C. – On a rain-soaked field at Stone Stadium on Sunday evening, South Carolina (3-0-0) posted a 2-0 win over Mercer (2-2-0) to keep their record perfect in 2014.

In the 28th minute, senior defender Mahamoudou Kaba fought for a ball deep in Mercer territory, and the Bears’ goalkeeper got tangled up with Kaba, knocking the Gamecock down. The official called for the penalty kick, and Kaba put it into the nets to give South Carolina the 1-0 lead.

Sophomore midfielder Kurtis Turner made it 2-0 in the 67th minute, starting the transition after senior midfielder Ryan Freiburger won a ball in Mercer’s half. Turner streaked free and unloaded a shot from 30 yards away past the Mercer netminder for his second goal of the year.

One of Mercer’s best chances came late on a cross that no Bear could match up with inside the six-yard box. Kaba’s play in the back helped shut down Mercer’s offense, taking balls away from Bear players on a number of occasions in one-on-one situations. The rest of the backline also held their own, with senior Braeden Troyer, junior Reid Grayson and sophomore Ive Burnett all helping sophomore goalkeeper Marco Velez tally his second shutout of the year.

South Carolina started the contest 15 minutes late after heavy rains drenched the field earlier in the afternoon.

Game Changer:
Mo Kaba pressed ahead in the 28th minute, forcing the foul in the box that gave South Carolina the 1-0 advantage.

Key Stat:
Kurtis Turner put three shots on goal for the Gamecocks, matching Mercer’s team total.


  • The Gamecocks held advantages in shots (17-8), shots on goal (6-3) and corner kicks (8-2).
  • Kaba’s first-half penalty kick is the first he’s taken in play for the Gamecocks.
  • Senior midfielder Ryan Freiburger’s assist ranks as his second as a Gamecock.
  • Mercer was whistled for four offsides, while South Carolina only drew one flag.
  • The Gamecocks move to 3-0 for the first time since 2004, the last season SC played as an independent.
  • The match was delayed by 15 minutes due to heavy rains after the Gamecock women win over High Point.

South Carolina Head Coach Mark Berson

We showed some pretty good ideas on corners and attacking set pieces. I kind of liked some of the things that are happening, but we need to be a lot sharper.

Tweet of the Match:

Up Next:
South Carolina closes its season-opening homestand on Friday, Sept. 12 with a match against UNC Wilmington. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. at Stone Stadium.