Preparing for his 31st season at the helm of the Gamecock men’s soccer program, head coach Mark Berson has been at South Carolina from the beginning. He was hired to move the program to varsity status in 1978 and he quickly put Carolina on the map. He has gone on to mold the Gamecocks into a consistent winner that competes for championships.
Below are his comments on this year’s signing class.
Coach Berson on Danny Cates: “Danny is a very explosive player who can play in the midfield, up front or on the back line in defense. He has very good speed, he is good at taking players on and he finishes very well. Danny is also good in the air, and he is very adaptable in his approach to the game, in that he can play almost any position on the field. Danny is a tremendous competitor and he will bring a lot of that intensity with him to the Carolina program.”
Coach Berson on Hunter Howayeck: “Hunter is a rangy player who can play in the back or midfield. He’s very good at the wide positions both in the midfield and on the back line. Hunter has also played centrally in defense and has done very well. Hunter organizes the game well and he’s good in the air. He is very good technically, and he reads the game well coming forward with the ball.”
Coach Berson on Luke Berson: “Luke is a central defender who is good in the air and reads the game well. He also knows how to organize his defense and organizes things well in the back. In terms of his distribution, he rarely loses the ball after he wins a tackle coming forward. His primary position will be as a central defender.”
Coach Berson on Daniel Lynch: “Daniel has played primarily as a defender, but he can also play in the midfield line. He has good quickness, size and strength. He reads the game very well, passes well and is also very strong in the air.”
Coach Berson on David MacVane: “David is a creative attacking midfielder who has great vision, sees the game well and opens up the game well with his passes. He’s also a threat to come forward and strike at goal. David’s greatest strength is the creativity he brings to the center of the midfield. He has competed at a high level with the U-18 National Team program, and that experience will be important as he comes into our program.”
Coach Berson on Steven Morrissey: “Steven is another player that has a lot of versatility. He can play in the midfield as a balancing, defensive or attacking midfielder. He can also play in the middle, and wide in the back line as well. He has good size, strength and speed and is a very determined and tenacious tackler. Steven is good distributing the ball in the midfield and has good vision.”
Coach Berson on Ross Power: “Ross is a goalkeeper from Hammond Academy in Columbia. He is a very good athlete who is a four-time state wrestling champion. He has played very well in the goal for Hammond and for his club team, Lexington United. The big challenge for Ross, and any goalkeeper coming into the college game, will be the adjustment to the speed of the game and the quality of the shots and crosses that he will have to deal with at this level.”
Coach Berson on Brandon Tarr: “Brandon is an out-and-out attacking player who has proven himself at the club, state, national and international level with the United States U-17 National Team. He is very good in taking players on and he is a threat to score with either foot. He’s equally efficient playing wide in the midfield and up front. Brandon will certainly add a big boost to our attack.”