July 28, 2015
COLUMBIA, S.C. – The year of 2015 has seen three Gamecock greats gain Hall of Fame accolades from different groups, showcasing the strength of the program over the past 37 years.
The honors began in January when Clark Brisson earned a spot in the North Carolina Soccer Hall of Fame. Brisson, a first-team All-American in 1989 who hailed from Raleigh, N.C., still ranks fourth on South Carolina’s all-time points list with 98. The Gamecock squads he played on made four-straight NCAA Tournaments, including the first College Cup appearance in program history in 1988. Brisson’s high school days were tales of legend, playing at Sanderson High School for Bob Catapano, where they were undefeated for a national-record 103 matches straight.
In May, Rob Smith gained induction to the Delaware Sports Hall of Fame. The Gamecocks’ career leader in assists, Smith tallied 40 in his 84 games in the Garnet and Black. The Wilmington, Del., native earned third-team All-America accolades in 1993 and helped South Carolina to three NCAA Tournaments, including the College Cup finals in ’93. The only four-time All-South Region player in Gamecock history, Smith went on to earn spots on the 1996 U.S. Olympic Team as well as play in Major League Soccer with the Columbus Crew.
The latest announcement came on the last day of June, as Mark Berson, the only head coach in program’s 38 years, was selected to join the South Carolina Letterman’s Association Hall of Fame in September. Berson owns 472 wins, most of any active NCAA Division I coach and sixth on the career lists. Twenty of Berson’s Gamecock teams have made the NCAA Tournament, with two advancing into the College Cup. Berson also claimed the Bill Jeffrey Award for outstanding service to collegiate soccer at this spring’s NSCAA Convention in Philadelphia, Pa.
Berson joins six of his former students in the Hall of Fame, joining Doug Allison (2010), Charles Arndt (2014), Marty Baltzegar (2009), Warren Lipka (2012), Clint Mathis (2007) and Josh Wolff (2008).
The 38th year of Gamecock men’s soccer gets started on Aug. 28 against Mercer at 7 p.m. Season tickets are available for $25 for adults, $10 for youth 17 and under, with the season ticket getting one into both men’s and women’s soccer matches this fall. Those dedicated season-ticket purchasers will also receive a free Gamecock scarf again with their purchase. Order your tickets online today at GamecocksOnline.com/tickets.