No. 14 Gamecocks Defeat Tennessee, 2-1, To Remain In SEC Lead
Oct. 17, 2010
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By Miquel Jacobs
COLUMBIA, S.C. - Junior defender Ellen Fahey headed in her first career goal in the 59th minute to lead No. 14 South Carolina to its fourth consecutive victory against Tennessee with a 2-1 win Sunday afternoon at Stone Stadium.
In front of a national television audience on ESPNU, the Gamecocks (12-3-2, 6-1-1 SEC) went ahead 1-0 in the 32nd minute off MAC Hermann Trophy Award candidate Kayla Grimsley's SEC-leading 10th goal of the season before Fahey hit the game winner in the second half. Junior midfielder Kira Campbell earned the assists on both goals. Grimsley now leads the SEC in goals (10), assists (9) and points (29), and is now just one assist shy of becoming the first Gamecock to record a season of 10 assists and 10 goals.
Chelsea Hatcher scored for Tennessee (7-8-1, 4-3-1 SEC) in the 78th minute with an unassisted goal from 28 yards out that fired into the upper corner of the net. The shot on goal was just one of four for the Lady Vols, marking a record ninth consecutive game that the Gamecock defense has allowed four shots on goal or less, including all SEC opponents this season.
South Carolina improves to 3-0-0 on television this season after defeating Ole Miss (3-0) and Mississippi State (7-0) two weeks ago at home in games broadcast by the Fox Soccer Channel and CSS.
The Lady Vols put the pressure on the Gamecocks in the early going of the match, threatening to end Carolina's unbeaten Sunday record in the 2010 season. Emily Dowd broke free for a breakaway in the 13th minute that was thwarted by SEC Defensive Player of the Year candidate Brittiny Rhoades with a perfectly timed tackle from behind eight yards out of the goal. Despite the early control of possession, shots were hard to come by for the Lady Vols as well as the Gamecocks. The first solid attempt for either team came in the 32nd when Grimsley took a feed from Campbell and slotted it past goalkeeper Molly Baird for the 1-0 lead at 31:25.
Possession a 1-0 lead at the break despite trailing 4-2 in shots through the first 45 minutes, South Carolina was able to strike again in the 59th for the eventual game winner. Freshman midfielder Danielle Au was fouled outside the '18 for a free kick that would resemble a short corner kick, and Campbell's service found Fahey's head for the strike at 58:39.
The Gamecocks nearly made it 3-0 one minute later after Grimsley's one-touch pass split the defense for a streaking Maria Petroni in the box, but Baird was able to race out and grab the ball before the open shot could be taken.
Tennessee's Amy Harrison misfired on an open opportunity in the 69th minute, sailing high a rebound shot in front of the net after Gamecock goalkeeper Mollie Patton parried a corner kick. The Lady Vols had another corner two minutes later that placed the ball between an attacker and the net, but sophomore Christine Watts was able to clear the ball before the shot could be taken. Hatcher eventually scored Tennessee's goal at 77:02 with a shot from 28 yards out that went into the upper corner of the net.
The Gamecocks ended the match with a season low two shots on goal, but both attempts were scores to give the Gamecocks the 2-1 victory and their fourth consecutive win against Tennessee after going unbeaten in the first 13 matches between the two teams.
South Carolina travels to Arkansas for the final road game of the 2010 regular season with a Thursday night match scheduled for 8 p.m. The Gamecocks are 6-0-1 on the road this season.