Women’s soccer falls to South Carolina in final road game

Austin Hannon, Staff Reporter

In the final game of the regular season, the Alabama women’s soccer team (9-8-1, 4-4-1) lost 4-0 in Columbia to the South Carolina Gamecocks (10-5-1, 5-3-1).

Both squads came into Sunday with a 4-3-1 conference record, but the Gamecocks quickly changed that.

One minute into the match, South Carolina forward Catherine Barry scored off of a rebound to put the Gamecocks up 1-0. It was the fifth fastest goal in program history.

In the 25th minute, South Carolina took advantage of a free kick from outside the box when midfielder Samantha Chang tapped the ball through traffic and into the net.

The Gamecocks were up 2-0, but they weren’t finished.

In the 30th minute, Barry found forward Ryan Gareis to extend the South Carolina lead, 3-0, before halftime.

Early in the second half, Alabama had a few chances, with a corner kick as well as a shot from forward Aislin Streicek. Streicek’s shot was the only shot on goal for the Crimson Tide in the game. South Carolina finished with eight.

The rest of the game, Alabama was unable to create any meaningful chances. To cap it off, South Carolina struck again in the 78th minute, making the score 4-0. 

“South Carolina is extremely organized,” Alabama head coach Wes Hart said. “They get a lot of numbers behind the ball. We just weren’t clicking today. Even the passes that we connected were a bit sloppy, which did not help us.”

Sunday’s match was Alabama’s final chance to secure a road win in 2021, and now the Crimson Tide will finish with a road record of 0-6-1, with the one draw coming at Texas A&M.

Crone had four saves for Alabama, but she couldn’t get enough help from her defense to keep the Crimson Tide in the game.

Hart summed up his team’s loss in a few sentences.

“Not a great start,” Hart said. “We didn’t deal well with their kickoff. We failed to clear the ball and found ourselves down a minute into the game. That seemed to rattle us a bit and gave them a ton of confidence.”

Alabama returns home to play its final regular-season game against its archrival, the Auburn Tigers on Thursday, Oct. 28. The Tigers are currently ranked No. 19 in the country.