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Gamecocks Picked Fifth In Preseason C-USA Poll
Men's Soccer  . 

Gamecocks Picked Fifth In Preseason C-USA Poll

Aug. 11, 2017

IRVING, Texas — The Conference USA Men’s Soccer Preseason Poll for the 2017 season was released on Friday with South Carolina picked to finish fifth in the league. The Gamecocks had three players named to the preseason All-C-USA team, tying with FIU for the most selections.

Junior forward Bjorn Gudjonsson headlines the trio of Carolina players on the preseason all-conference team. The Icelandic striker led the team with eight goals last season en route to earning Second Team All-C-USA honors. Gudjonsson was the only player in the conference last year to earn C-USA Offensive Player of the Week on multiple occasions.

Junior defender Peyton Ericson and sophomore midfielder Julian Veen Uldal were also named to the team. Ericson spearheaded Carolina’s backline last season, making 16 starts in 17 appearances en route to Third Team All-C-USA honors. Veen Uldal started 19 of the team’s 20 matches as a freshman in 2016. He was named Third Team All-C-USA and earned a spot on the C-USA All-Freshman Team. The Gamecocks’ nine All-C-USA selections last season were the programs most since joining the league in 2005.

South Carolina went 5-2-1 in conference play last season, earning the No. 2 seed in the C-USA Tournament. The program is fresh off consecutive trips to the second round of the NCAA Tournament the past two seasons. 14 newcomers, including five transfers, help makeup a new-look Gamecocks squad in 2017. The team kicks off the season on Sunday night with an exhibition match at Duke beginning at 7 p.m.. Carolina will play two more exhibition matches before opening the regular season vs. USC-Upstate at home on Aug. 25.

2017 C-USA Men’s Soccer Preseason Team
^Elliot Panicco, Charlotte, R-So., GK
*Santiago Patino, FIU, Jr., F
Paul Marie, FIU, Sr., D
Bjorn Gudjonsson, South Carolina, Jr., F
David Valverde, UAB, Sr., MF
Julian Veen Uldal, South Carolina, So., MF
Alex Bumpus, Kentucky, Sr., D
Peyton Ericson, South Carolina, Jr., D
Joris Ahlinvi, FIU, So., MF
Niko Klosterhalfen, ODU, Jr., MF
Tom Smart, New Mexico, R-So., D
Matthew Constant, New Mexico, So., D

*Preseason Offensive Player of the Year
^Preseason Defensive Player of the Year

2017 C-USA Men’s Soccer Preseason Poll (First-Place Votes)
1. Charlotte (4)
2. New Mexico (2)
3. FIU (2)
4. Kentucky
5. South Carolina
6. UAB (1)
7. Old Dominion
8. Marshall
9. Florida Atlantic