Gainesville, FL - The Southeastern Conference championship is up
for grabs when the No. 8 University of Florida soccer team (14-2-2,
8-1-1 SEC) travels to Columbia, S.C. to meet SEC co-leader No. 17 Southv Carolina (14-3-2, 8-1-1 SEC) on Friday, Oct. 29. Match time is set for 7:00 p.m. at the Eugene E. Stone III Stadium. The match will be
televised live on SUN Sports (Gainesville/Ocala Cox Cable channel 48 or
748) in north and central Florida and on Fox Sports Florida in the
southern portion of the state. Larry Vettel and Matthew Stubbington will
call the action for the match.
The Gators and Gamecocks are tied atop the SEC standings with identical 8-1-1 records in conference play. Sole possession of the SEC title goes to the winner, and if a tie occurs, the two teams will share the 2010 league title. The Gators will be seeking their 11th SEC title while the Gamecocks will look for their first regular-season soccer title.
The two teams met twice in 2009. In the 2009 regular-season finale held
in Gainesville, the Gators claimed a 3-0 win. McKenzie Barney scored
twice in the opening half and Holly King turned in the final goal in the
88th minute. The win gave Florida sole possession of the 2009 SEC title The two teams met again exactly a week later in the SEC Tournament semifinal, with the Gamecocks using a goal in the 11th minute to claim a 1-0 win. USC went on to win its first SEC Tournament title.
In the last full week of league action this past weekend, Florida used
a goal in each half to take a 2-0 win at LSU on Oct. 21. Freshman Taylor Travis put UF on the board early with a 35-yard strike in the fourth
minute, the team’s longest goal of the season. Natalia Torosian and
Maggie Rodgers were inserted into the match in the 70th minute and 52
seconds later, the pair combined for a goal. Rodgers crossed a ball from
the right sideline to Torosian near the penalty spot, who scored her
third goal of the season. On Sunday, three different Gators scored to
give Florida a 3-1 win over Arkansas. Sophomore Holly King and junior
Sarah Chapman each turned in their first goals of the season. Sophomore McKenzie Barney finished UF’s scoring when she hit her 10th goal of the season. She is now tied for first with Tahnai Annis for the Gators’ season goals lead at 10. The pair are second behind South
Carolina’s Kayla Grimsley (11 goals) in the SEC goals list.
After her long-range goal at LSU and her pair of assists versus
Arkansas, Travis was named to the Top Drawer Soccer National Team of the Week and picked up her second SEC Freshman of the Week honor.
Last week, the Gamecocks defeated Arkansas 3-1 and then posted a 1-0 win over LSU on Sunday. The Gamecocks’ only league loss was a 1-0
decision to Georgia on Oct. 15. Junior Kayla Grimsley, who played with
the U.S. Under 20 National Team this past spring, leads the SEC in goals (11) and points (31). USC goalkeeper Mollie Patton leads the SEC with her goals against average of 0.58.