Aug. 20, 2017
COLUMBIA, S.C. — South Carolina men's soccer wrapped up its trio of exhibition matches on Sunday afternoon with a 2-2 draw against the College of Charleston. Sophomore forward Luca Mayr and junior forward Trygve Ellingstad each scored for the Gamecocks. The teams played two 40 minute halves at Stone Stadium, with water breaks scheduled at the 20 minute mark of each period.
"We played every player on the roster," said head coach Mark Berson. "We saw a lot of players -- some of them in spots that they might not play during the regular season. We're trying to look at depth at different positions. I think it was a constructive effort in that way. I thought when we had our first group out there and they were running in sync that we played quite well the first 20 minutes. After that we started to rotate some different people in."
Carolina was aggressive and showed great continuity on offense early, logging seven shots and three shots on goal. Mayr and Ellingstad, two key contributors on last year's NCAA squad, combined for four of those seven strikes.
2016 Third Team All-Conference USA selection William Pyle got the start in the net for the Gamecocks, logging two saves in 20 minutes of work. Freshman Justin Bauer finished the second half playing the remaining 20 minutes after the hydration period. Bauer made a beautiful full-extension save to his right 2 minutes after coming in on a rocket off the foot of the Cougars' Avery Ryan.
South Carolina's prowess on offense finally paid dividends when Luca Mayr broke loose on the far sideline just past midfield from his defender in the 28 minute. The Steyr, Austria, native, turned on the jets and had 1v1 with CofC goalkeeper Kevin Shields. Mayr drew Shields off his spot and booted it past him to the far right post from 10-yards out to put the Gamecocks in front 1-0. The score would remain 1-0 at the half.
Transfer Ian McGrane started the second half in goal for Carolina. The Cougars tied the match in the 58th minute on a goal by Matt Nozedar. The Gamecocks answered right away in the 61st minute after Petter Soleberg pitched a beautiful in to Ellingstad, who headed it in for the score just before the second water break.
Redshirt freshman Jeffery Lu saw his first minutes of the season as he came in for McGrane after the mandatory stoppage. CofC wasted no time in tying the score as Nozedar found the back of the net 47 seconds after Ellingstad's goal.
Redshirt freshman Jeff Lu saw his first minutes of the season as he came in for McGrane after the mandatory stoppage. CofC wasted no time in tying the score as Nozedar found the back of the net 47 seconds after Ellingstad's goal.
South Carolina played all 24 available players on its roster in the team's final exhibition contest, including all four goalies. The Gamecocks open the season this coming Friday as the team welcomes USC-Upstate to The Graveyard. Kickoff is scheduled for 7 p.m. with the gates opening at 6 p.m.
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