Gamecocks Take Down No. 24 Kentucky on the Road
LEXINGTON, Ky. – The South Carolina men’s soccer team (2-3-1) opened Sun Belt Conference play with a bang Friday night (Sept 15), as the Gamecocks went on the road and defeated 24th ranked Kentucky (3-3) 1-0.
South Carolina goalkeeper Ben Alexander was challenged early when the Wildcats were awarded a penalty kick just over a minute into the match. Alexander was able to make the diving save, turning away Aboubacar Camara shot to the bottom left. Alexander finished the night with four saves. The penalty kick save by Alexander was the first by a Carolina keeper since March 20, 2021, against Charlotte.
The Gamecocks were limited to one shot in the first 26 minutes of the match. In the 27th minute, a foul by Kentucky just outside the 18-yard box gave Carolina an opening. Ethan Dekel Daks stepped up to take the free kick and delivered. Dekel Daks’ shot went high and through the hands of the UK goalkeeper for his second goal of the season.
Two minutes later the Wildcats had an opportunity to tie the score, but Alexander came through again with a key save. South Carolina’s defense held strong in the second half, limiting the Wildcats to two shots on goal and denied five corner kick opportunities.
For the match, Kentucky held a 10-5 advantage in shots, 4-3 in shots on goal, and 8-0 in corners taken. The victory was South Carolina’s first on the road in the series since 2012 and was their seventh shutout all-time against UK.
The Gamecocks return home to continue conference play when they host Georgia State September 22 at 7 p.m.