No. 5 Florida Soccer at South Carolina Thursday

Gator soccer is back on the road as they take on the South Carolina Gamecocks tonight in Columbia. The Gators hope to come back strong after losing last year’s match up 2-1 in overtime, making it the Gator’s first home league overtime loss since 2004.

Florida is most recently coming off a 5-1 win over Mississippi State. The team battled back after Mississippi State got it’s first and only goal off a corner kick in the first minute of the game.

” I think the best news about that was it gave us a chance to show some resilience and come back and score a goal 10 minutes later, and then kind of break it open in the second half to score four more for a feel good win on alumni weekend,” said Florida head coach Becky Burleigh.

Florida players have found themselves recognized as Players of the Week four separate times this season. Those who have been honored include Jillian Graff, Pamel Begic, Tessa Andujar, and Savannah Jordan. Key players have helped the team keep an undefeated record in the SEC and so far go 11-2 overall.

Another player head coach Becky Burleigh feels has had stand out performances is Meggie Dougherty Howard.

“Meggie Dougherty Howard who I think is a terrifically talented player who doesn’t have many gaps in her game… she doesn’t get many recognitions but she does everything for us,” said Burleigh.

The Gators hope to keep their perfect conference record against the Gamecocks who are 2-3-1 in conference play.  Despite their record, South Carolina has only surrendered six goals this season and is sixth in the nation with a .414 goals-against-average.

“They’re a really really stingy defense. They don’t give up many goals. They are leading the SEC in that category now and they have traditionally been very good at that. Their goal keeper is the defending SEC Player of the Year,” said Burleigh.

South Carolina is coming off a 1-0 loss against the Kentucky Wildcats, who the Gators will play this Sunday.

Click here for audio of Florida head coach Becky Burleigh:

Burleigh on giving up a goal in the first minute.

Burleigh on Meggie Dougherty Howard.

Burleigh on South Carolina.





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