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Aug. 10, 2015

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. – The Southeastern Conference coaches have picked the No. 11 South Carolina women’s soccer team to finish fourth in the SEC this season, as announced by the league on Monday.

The Gamecocks, who open regular season play at home against Northeastern on Aug. 21 (7 p.m. ET), received 134 total points in the poll. Points were compiled on a 13-12-11-10-9-8-7-6-5-4-3-2-1 basis, though each coach was not allowed to vote for his/her own team.

South Carolina returns 25 letterwinners and six starters from last year’s squad. The Gamecocks reached the NCAA Elite Eight for the first time in program history in 2014, and their No. 9 ranking at the end of the year matched the 2009 team’s mark for the best season-ending rank in school history.

All five of South Carolina’s top scorers from a year ago return to action this fall, including SEC Freshman of the Year Savannah McCaskill. Other notable returnees include 2014 top-goal scorer Sophie Groff (6G, 6A) and junior midfielder Chelsea Drennan, who led the Gamecocks with seven assists last season.

Eighth-ranked Florida topped the poll with 167 points and 11 of the 13 first-place votes, while No. 5 Texas A&M (149 points, two first-place votes) and No. 16 Kentucky (140 points, one first-place vote) rounded out the top three.

South Carolina opened preseason camp last week (Aug. 4), and the Gamecocks will play their only preseason match of the year this Friday (6 p.m. ET) on the road against N.C. State.

Season tickets are on sale now, with soccer fans yet again getting the best deal ever offered for tickets. For $25 for adults and $10 for youth 17 and under, purchasers receive a season ticket to every women’s and men’s soccer match this season, 19 in all. In addition, season-ticket buyers receive an exclusive Gamecock Soccer scarf. To take advantage of the offer, call 800-472-3267 or click HERE today.

Preseason Coaches’ Poll
Florida – 11 first-place votes, 167 points
Texas A&M – Two first-place votes, 149 points
Kentucky – One first place vote, 140 points
South Carolina – 134 points
Tennessee – 117 points
Missouri – 110 points
Auburn – 103 points
Arkansas – 80 points
Georgia – 71 points
Ole Miss – 64 points
LSU – 49 points
Alabama – 38 points
Vanderbilt – 34 points
Mississippi State – 18 points