Sept. 23, 2015
COLUMBIA, S.C. — The South Carolina women’s soccer team begins its SEC home slate on Thursday, hosting No. 4 Texas A&M on Thursday and Alabama on Sunday. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. on Thursday and 6 p.m. on Sunday from Stone Stadium. Thursday’s contest will be televised on the SEC Network while Sunday’s game is available on SEC Network +.
PLAYING FOR A CROWD
Through five games at Stone Stadium, the Gamecocks are leading the SEC and rank second in the nation in home attendance with 19,474 total fans and an average of 3,895 per contest.
GOALS ALL AROUND
Halfway through the season, the Gamecocks have had 15 different goal scorers, which is the most of any SEC school.
IN THE RANKINGS
The Gamecocks are No. 17 in this week’s NSCAA rankings and No. 15 in the TopDrawerSoccer.com poll. In the first RPI released by the NCAA South Carolina is No. 18.
BY THE NUMBERS
South Carolina holds a 154-59 shot advantage over opponents through nine games. The Gamecocks have put 78 of 154 shots on target, compared to opponents getting just 23 shots on goal. South Carolina averages 17.1 shots per game and is outscoring opponents 26-8.
South Carolina’s 26 goals and 76 points rank second in the SEC. The Gamecocks also rank second in the conference goals per game (2.89), assists (24) and assists per game (2.67). The Gamecocks’ 154 shots tie for the fifth most in the league. game (3.00).
SCOUTING TEXAS A&M
The Aggies are 9-1-0 on the year after defeating North Texas 2-1 (2OT) on Sunday. Texas A&M is 2-0-0 in the SEC with wins over then No. 10 Florida and Vanderbilt. Haley Pounds leads the team with seven goals, including four game-winners and 18 points. Taylor Saucier has stated all 10 games in the net, allowing nine goals and making 28 saves. The Aggies only loss of the season came at then No. 5 Florida State.
The Crimson Tide is 4-4-2 after picking up a 2-0 win over Jacksonville State on Sunday. Alabama is 1-1-0 in the SEC with a 3-2 (OT) win over LSU and a 1-0 loss to Kentucky. Celia Jiminez leads the team with four goals and eight points.
The Gamecocks’ 3-1 victory over Georgia on Sept. 11 was Head Coach Shelley Smith 175th win at South Carolina.
MCCASKILL IN THE LEAD
Forward Savannah McCaskill leads South Carolina in goals (7), points (17), shots (23), and shots on goal (14). The sophomore has also tallied three assists. She is tied for fourth in the SEC in goals and tied for fifth in points. McCaskill, who was named SEC Freshman of the Year in 2014, has already surpassed her scoring output of five goals from her rookie campaign.
ASSISTED BY DRENNAN
Junior midfielder Chelsea Drennan has recorded a team-high five assists. Her 24 career assists tie for second all-time in school history and she just nine shy of the school record (33). Drennan’s five assists are tied for third most in the SEC.
TWO FOR GROFF
Junior forward Sophie Groff scored a pair of goals in two games this season (Coastal Carolina and Kennesaw State), including a game-winner in both contests. She is one of 14 players in the SEC to tally two or more game-winning goals.
ROOKIES ARE ROLLING
Newcomers Carrie Lawrence, Courtney Kaplan and Simone Wark have found the back of the net early in their freshman campaigns, each tallying a goal this season. Wark scored the game-winner in the Gamecocks’ 1-0 win at Missouri and earned SEC Freshman of the Week honors.
THE FAST LANE
Sophomore midfielder Lindsey Lane netted the game winner in the Gamecocks’ double overtime victory over Oklahoma. Three of Lane’s four career goals have been game- winners.
GRAY FOR THE WIN
Senior defender Caroline Gray scored the game-winner in South Carolina’s season opener against Northeastern; the goal was the first of her career.
The Gamecock defense turned in its best performance of the season in a 2-0 victory over Colgate, allowing zero shot attempts. South Carolina also recorded shutouts against Kennesaw State, limiting the Owls to just two shot attempts and at Missouri.
Senior Carly Ray and junior Paige Bendell made their return to the back line in South Carolina’s match with Colgate after missing time with injuries. The duo played key roles in the Gamecocks’ defense that held the Raiders to zero shot attempts. Both Ray and Bendell were credited with an assist in the 2-0 win, including the game-winning assist to Bendell.
The Gamecocks travel to Fayetteville, Ark. to face the Razorbacks on Fri., Oct. 2. The match is set for 8 p.m. ET.