Nov. 12, 2014
NORFOLK, Va. – The Gamecocks (9-9) continued their late-match magic in the first round of the Conference USA Tournament, as sophomore Koty Millard put home the game-winner with 13 seconds remaining to push South Carolina past No. 18 Kentucky (10-5-4) by a 2-1 score in Wednesday’s opening match.
With time winding down, senior Mahamoudou Kaba found the midfielder Millard with a quick pass, and Millard knocked it past Irving for the game-winning goal, his second of the year. With 13 seconds left, Kentucky quickly went forward, but Kaba cleared the pass to keep the Gamecocks on top for the victory.
The Gamecocks leveled the contest in the 51st when Kaba, a second-team All-Conference USA selection as a defender, collected a missed clearance by the Wildcats and slotted it past Irving for his fourth goal of the year. South Carolina was more aggressive in the second half, as has been its calling card all season, outshooting Kentucky 11-4 in the last 45 minutes.
In the 31st minute, Kentucky’s Ryan Creel tumbled over a Gamecock defender inside the box, and the referee pointed to the penalty spot for the foul and ensuing kick. Kristopher Tollefsen put it to the right of South Carolina sophomore goalkeeper Marco Velez to give the Wildcats a 1-0 lead.
A minute later, the Gamecocks had their best chance of the first half when C-USA Freshman of the Year Mikkel Knudsen had a one-on-one shot with UK goalkeeper Callum Irving, but the gray-clad Wildcat snagged the shot for his only save of the period.
Kaba capitalizing on the Kentucky miscue got the Gamecocks going in the right direction,
The Gamecocks put five of its 11 second-half chances on goal.
- The Gamecocks held advantages in shots (14-10), shots on goal (6-5) and corner kicks (8-7).
- South Carolina completed its sixth comeback win of the year.
- Knudsen led all players with four shots in the contest.
- Sophomore midfielder Eli Dent put both of his shots on goal.
- Both goalkeepers Irving and Velez had four saves.
Tweet of the Match:
— Brian Binette (@BrianBinette) November 12, 2014
South Carolina takes on either third-seeded UAB or sixth-seeded Marshall in Friday’s first semifinal in the Conference USA Tournament.