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No. 25 Gamecocks And No. 8 49ers Set For Top-25 Tussle
Men's Soccer  . 

No. 25 Gamecocks And No. 8 49ers Set For Top-25 Tussle

Oct. 25, 2016

Game Information

Date: Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Game Time: 7 p.m.

Location: Columbia, S.C.

Stadium: Stone Stadium (5,000)

COLUMBIA, S.C. – No. 25 South Carolina (9-4-1 overall, 4-0-1 C-USA) squares off with No. 8 Charlotte (9-2-1 overall, 4-1-0 C-USA) Wednesday night at Stone Stadium in a huge Conference USA match for sole position of first place in the standings. The Gamecocks re-entered the NSCAA Coaches Top-25 Poll this week after being unranked since the second week of the season.

“It’s a big game. Every year it’s always an important game with Charlotte,” said Head Coach Mark Berson. “Year after year the two teams are usually right up there in the standings. This will be a big match. Charlotte comes in with a really good record and a really good performance. It’ll be a tough game, and our guys are really looking forward to it.”

Carolina remains the only unbeaten team in C-USA heading into Wednesday’s top-25 clash. The Gamecocks hold a one point edge over the 49ers in the standings right now.

Charlotte heads into the match fresh off a dominant 5-0 victory over C-USA foe UAB last Saturday. Brandt Bronico, who was named C-USA Offensive Player of the Week on Monday, had his first career hat trick vs. the Blazers. Bronico scored three goals on just four shots.


– Mark Berson is the winningest active NCAA Division I coach, 5th on the all-time NCAA D1 list
– Berson is tied for the most NCAA Tournament appearances among active DI coaches with 21
– The Gamecocks return 17 letter winners and eight starters from last season’s squad that advanced to the Second Round of the NCAA Tournament
– South Carolina, which has been a member of Conference USA since 2005, has two C-USA Tournament titles and two regular-season crowns in 11 years
-Seniors Danny Deakin and Koty Millard were both named to the 2016 Preseason All-C-USA Team
– Deakin was named to the CollegeSoccerNews 2016 Preseason All-America Second Team
– South Carolina re-entered the NSCAA Coaches Top-25 Poll on Oct. 25 slotted at No. 25; the Gamecocks are back in the poll for the first time since week one of the season
– As of Oct. 25, Carliona is ranked No. 19 by Top Drawer Soccer, No. 20 by Soccer America and No. 27 by College Soccer News
– South Carolina had an eight-match unbeaten streak snapped in a 1-0 loss to No. 2 Wake Forest on Oct. 18
– The streak dated back to a 2-1 overtime win vs. Georgia Southern on Sept. 13.
– During the streak, Carolina outscored opponents 15-4 and pitched four shutouts
– Junior goalkeeper William Pyle was named the C-USA Defensive Player of the Week on Oct. 17 after posting back-to-back shutouts; Pyle had eight saves including five vs. UAB and a PK save in the 108th minute at FIU
– Pyle is 9-2-1 on the season with 44 saves and four shutouts; his .833 save percentage ranks 16th in the nation and his 0.731 goals against average ranks 29th in the country
– Sophomore forward Bjorn Gudjonsson was named the C-USA Offensive Player of the Week on Oct. 3 after he scored three goals in two games. He recorded his first career multi-goal game vs. High Point on Sept. 28 with two scores. Gudjonsson also scored once in a 2-1 in vs. Marshall.
– Carolina’s win over Furman on Sept. 20 was its first of the season over a ranked opponent, as the Paladins were slotted No. 18 by Soccer America
– Senior Kurtis Turner was named C-USA Offensive Player of the Week on Sept. 26 after scoring the game-winning goal at Furman and recording his second assist of the season vs. Georgia State
– The Gamecocks posted a season-high 27 shots and 11 shots on goal in their win vs. Georgia Southern
– Deakin (7G, 5A) leads the team in points with 19; Gudjonsson ranks second with nine (4G, 1A)
– Deakin leads the team in shots with 41; Mayr leads the team in shots on goal with 17
– South Carolina’s balanced offensive attack features four players with double-digit SOG: Mayr (18), Deakin (17), Walker (12) and Turner (11)
– Mayr scored his first career goal as a Gamecock vs. Mercer on Aug. 30
– Mayr tallied an individual single-game season-high five SOG vs. Georgia Southern
– Deakin leads the team with five game-winning goals, which ranks fifth in the nation currently


A new Stone Stadium attendance record was set in the 2016 season opener vs. Clemson, as 6,892 fans attended the matchup. The mark broke the previous record of 6,157, also set vs. Clemson on Sept. 3, 2010.

SCOUTING Charlotte

The 49ers head in to Wednesday night’s match fresh off a 5-0 win vs. UAB in their last outing. Charlotte swept the conference awards last week as Bronico earned C-USA Offensive Player of the Week honors after his hat trick and Luke Waechter was named C-USA Defensive Player of the Week after anchoring the team’s defense to consecutive shutouts. Waechter is an integral part of a defense that is one of the best in the country. Charlotte leads the nation in team goals against average at 0.40. Goalkeeper Elliot Panicco will be one of the top keepers South Carolina has seen this season. He ranks second in the nation in save percentage at .884 and second in the country in goals against average at 0.402. The 49ers have eight shutouts this season, good for the second best shutout percentage clip in the country at 0.67. Charlotte is also one of the nation’s top scoring offenses, averaging 2.17 goals per game, which leads C-USA and ranks eighth in the country. Bronico leads the team in points with 16 (6G, 4A). Marco Sunol-Rojas (4G, 3A) and Harrison Steadman (5G) also have tallied double-digit points this year for Charlotte. The 49ers well-balanced offensive attack features six players with multiple goals on the year.