Gamecock Women’s Soccer Dominates in Spring Season Opener

COLUMBIA, S.C. – South Carolina women’s soccer (8-3-0, 6-2-0 SEC) dominated College of Charleston (0-4-0, 0-1-0 CAA) 3-0 on Sunday in the spring season opener at Stone Stadium. Freshman forward Corinna Zullo provided the game-winning goal for the Gamecocks late in the first half and Lauren Chang and Jyllissa Harris added insurance in the second half.

“I thought our team did a great job at responding and coming out in the second half and playing match better and getting some goals because of it,” South Carolina Shelley Smith said. “We really dominated play in that second half. We were proud of them for growing and learning in just these 90 minutes today.”

After the opening 10 minutes the Gamecocks were able to get their feet under them and settle into the match. The Carolina defense proved to be tough for the Cougars to break outside of the first 10 minutes of action. The Gamecocks limited the Cougars to just two shots all match, with one on goal, and none in the second half.

Zullo managed to break through for the Gamecocks in the 37th minute from an impressive angle on the right side of the net. The freshman put herself in a dangerous position before firing a looping shot over the Cougar’s goalkeeper that led to a goal on the top left side of the net. The goal for Zullo is her third of the 2020-21 season and marks her second career game-winning goal.

South Carolina did not settle on its 1-0 lead in the second half, with a handball coming in the 61st minute caused by the Gamecocks unrelenting pressure. Chang, a senior captain, stepped up to the penalty kick spot and delivered a strike to the right side of the net for her second goal of the season to give Carolina a 2-0 lead.

Just eight minutes later it was Harris who delivered from distance. Harris, who slid into a center back role for the Gamecocks on Sunday, stepped up to a free kick just outside the box and sent the ball off the crossbar and into the back of the net for her second goal of the season that looked eerily similar to her first goal of the season against Missouri back on Sept. 27, 2020.

“That is kind of my favorite shot, my favorite part of the field,” Harris said. “I didn’t think of anything else but shoot it and I was excited to see that go in for our team and for it to help us get the win today.”

Freshman goalkeeper Taylor Fox celebrated her birthday on Sunday with her first career solo shutout with the Gamecocks. The rookie was only forced to make one save while facing two shots against the Cougars.

As a team the Gamecocks held a shot advantage of 26-2 with 11 of the shots on frame. More impressively is 21 of those 26 shots for the Gamecocks came in the second half. The squad also finished with 12 corner kicks and limited the Cougars to none.

Individually Catherine Barry and Ryan Gareis both finished with a team-high five shots on the day while Ranya Senhaji fired off four in her first career start. Sophomore Riane Coman made her second career start on Sunday, but her first as an outside back for the Gamecocks, playing a total of 55 minutes.

South Carolina will remain at Stone Stadium for its next match, slated for March 21 against Coastal Carolina (7-6-0, 6-4-0 Sun Belt). That match will kick off at 2 p.m. and can be watched on SEC Network +.

Categories: Local Sports, Sports, USC Gamecocks