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USC Athletics Weekly Update

Feb. 27, 2006

Columbia, S.C. -

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The baseball squad extended its winning streak to seven straight games after a three-game weekend sweep of Duquesne. Freshman first baseman Justin Smoak had five hits, scored fi ve times and drove in five runs on Sunday. Robbie Grinestaff belted a three-run homer, his fourth of the season. The hot stretch has moved the Gamecocks into the top 10 in the latest Baseball America poll. The ninth-ranked Gamecocks host top-ranked Clemson on Saturday afternoon at 1:30 p.m., then face the Tigers in Clemson on Sunday afternoon.

Men's Basketball
The men's basketball team dropped a pair of one-point decisions last week, falling at Georgia and against Vanderbilt. Senior Tarence Kinsey topped the 1,000point plateau for his career, the 38th Gamecock to accomplish the feat. The ESPN cameras will be on hand for Tuesday's home finale against LSU, then the regular season comes to an end at Auburn on Saturday.

Women's Basketball
The women's basketball team won two of three games over the past week, routing Longwood and Mississippi State at home before losing the regular season finale at No. 24 Vanderbilt. The Gamecocks go into the SEC Tournament as the seventh-seed and will face Auburn at 3:30 p.m. on Thursday. The winner gets Tennessee in the second round on Friday at 3:30 p.m. The tournament continues through Sunday in North Little Rock, Ark.

The equestrian team split a pair of matches over the weekend, defeating Baylor on Friday before losing at Georgia on Saturday. USC claimed the title in all four events against the Bears in the home season finale. The Gamecocks took victories in equitation and reining against the Bulldogs, but were not able to come away with the overall win. Senior Tara Brothers won both of her competitions against Georgia. The squad does not compete again until March 25 at Stephen F. Austin.

Men's Golf
The 16th-ranked men's golf team is off until March 18-19 when they compete at the Schenkel E-Z Go Invitational at Forest Heights Country Club in Statesboro, Ga.

Women's Golf
The Gamecock women's golf team opened its spring slate with an 11th-place finish at the Lady Puerto Rico Classic. Senior Erica Battle was Carolina's top performer in the event, tying for 28th on the individual leader board. Next up is the Lady Gamecock Classic, held March 10-12 at the University Club in Blythewood.

The softball team won thre of four games over the past week, winning at Charlotte, then taking two of three in the Gamecock Invitational over the weekend. Sophomore Lisa Longo drove in two and scored another in a 3-0 win over North Carolina State. Redshirt freshman Jessica Barnes fanned a career-high 15 and freshman Ashton Payne went 3-for-3 with three RBI in the win over Georgia Southern. The Gamecocks will host Campbell in a 3 p.m. twinbill on Tuesday, then travel to Chapel Hill for a five-game weekend tournament. The conference season opens March 11 at Alabama.

Swimming and Diving
South Carolina sent several swimmers to the Last Chance Meet in Athens, Ga. over the weekend but were not able to improve on their previous best times in attempting to earn a spot at the NCAA Championships. The USC divers will travel to Lexington, Ky. next week for the NCAA Zone Diving Championships.

Men's Tennis
The 31st-ranked USC men's tennis team, still playing without a couple of their key performers, lost a 5-2 decision to North Carolina State on Saturday. It was their first loss to the Wolfpack since 1999. The Gamecocks will try to end their drought on Tuesday when they travel to Winston-Salem, N.C. to face No. 15 Wake Forest in their final tune-up before the conference season gets underway against Mississippi State and Ole Miss this weekend.

Women's Tennis
The 24th-ranked USC women's tennis team knocked off Brown then fell to 13th-ranked Harvard over the weekend. Freshman Gira Schofield, ranked 46th in the nation, won twice at No. 1 singles. The Gamecocks open the conference season this weekend with matches at No. 75 Mississippi State and at No. 35 Ole Miss.

Track and Field
The USC track & field women's team tied for third at the SEC Indoor Championships in Gainesville, Fla., while the men placed a solid fi fth. Shay Shelton brought home the only gold medal with a win in the 800-meter run. Several Gamecocks will be in action this weekend participating in the Last Chance Meets in Ames, Iowa and in Blacksburg, Va. as they look to improve their standing in hopes of landing a spot at the NCAA Indoor Championships in Fayetteville, Ark., March 10-11.

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