RALEIGH, NC – Corinna Zullo scored the game winner with 45 seconds left in the regular season as the 16th-ranked South Carolina women’s soccer team took a 2-1 road win at NC State Sunday afternoon (August 29). The win improves the Gamecocks to 3-0 on the season.
“I am very proud of the team today,” said head coach Shelley Smith. “We stayed together for the 90 minutes and found a way to take the win against a strong opponent on the road. After conceding a disappointing goal early in the game, the response was great. It was a complete team effort as we managed to stay strong throughout the game. Both teams had chances and battled the heat.”
NC State got on the board quickly and found the back of the net in the second minute of the game. The Gamecock defense shut down the Wolfpack from there, as they only allow one shot on target for the rest of the game.
South Carolina tied the game in the 25th minute. Lauren Chang threw a long ball down the left sideline to Ryan Gareis. She found Eveleen Hahn as she drove into the penalty area, where she finished it off and put the ball into the right post. The goal was Hahn’s second in as many games. It was Chang’s third assist of the season and Gareis’s first.
Both sides established themselves defensively in the second half as they made seven shots together, with the Gamecocks scoring the only shot on goal.
Heading into the last minute, the game looked set to go into overtime, but the South Carolina attack had other plans. It would again be Lauren Chang who finds Gareis with a touch pass down the left sideline. Gareis’s pass in the penalty area was deflected from Samantha Chang and found Zullo’s right foot, where she pushed the ball just inside the right post. It was Zullo’s second goal of the season.
“We were happy to take advantage of a moment,” Smith said of the winner of Zullo’s game. “We got together behind the defense and Ryan played a great ball to Corinna who made an aggressive run to score from the back. That effort at the end made all the difference. I’m so happy they were all rewarded with a win. “
The South Carolina defense held the Wolfpack to just two shots on target. In the net, Heather Hinz made one save in the win. Before the game, the Gamecocks defeated NC State 12-5 and held the Wolfpack without a corner in the afternoon.
After a three-game road trip, the Gamecocks will return to Stone Stadium when they host Boston College Thursday, September 2 at 7 p.m.
For the latest women’s soccer news, visit GamecocksOnline.com or follow the team’s social media accounts on Twitter @GamecockWSoccer, Facebook /GamecockWSoccer and Instagram @GamecockWSoccer.