COLLEGE STATION, Texas — The eighth-ranked University of South Carolina equestrian team fell on the road Friday afternoon, 14-6, to No. 2 Texas A&M at the Hildebrand Equine Complex. The loss drops the Gamecocks to 4-5 (1-4 SEC).
Despite the setback, two Gamecocks earned MOP laurels, as Madison Sellman was honored for her performance in equitation on the flat and Sydney Smith was the top performer in equitation over fences.
With the win, the Aggies improve to 7-2 (3-1 SEC).
QUOTING HEAD COACH BOO MAJOR
“We continue to try to find the recipe for a win. We are disappointed with the loss, of course, but continue to see more consistent performances. The big mistakes are becoming smaller, but we still have to get stronger and more consistent to come out on top.”
EQUITATION OVER FENCES RECAP
Carolina lost the first two jumping points but recovered to win the next two. Smith rode Moose to a win over Kai Devoglaer, 86-81, and Sellman secured an 84-68 win over Alex Desiderio on Porter. At the end of equitation over fences, the Aggies led, 3-2.
Smith was awarded MOP accolades at the end of the competition. It’s her first win this season and the third MOP of her collegiate career.
Carolina won the first completed horsemanship point, but the Aggies took control by winning the next four. Bailey Mierzejewski earned the Gamecock win, 72-70, over Bailey Cook, but after one half of the meet, Texas A&M held a 7-3 lead.
MOP honors went to A&M’s Kaci Fisher, a 77-71.5 winner in her matchup.
EQUITATION ON THE FLAT RECAP
Two Gamecocks came away with wins on the flat. Sellman took home her second victory of the day with an 85-76 triumph over Rachel Hake on Callisto. Lauren Fabiano later won an 81-79 battle on Tom over Desiderio, but the Aggies held a 10-5 lead after the third event.
Sellman’s 11-point victory paved the way for the freshman to win her first collegiate MOP on Friday in what was also her first career flat win.
Freshman Caroline Gute entered the meet with a 6-0-1 overall record, including a 3-0 SEC mark, and she stayed undefeated with a victory on Friday. The Dublin, Ohio, native defeated Madison Bohman, 74-67.5, to score a point while riding Sailor.
The Aggies took MOP honors in reining, with Haley Franc collecting the win.
• Mierzejewski improved to 3-0-2 in SEC meets this season with her horsemanship victory.
• Smith reached a milestone on Friday, earning her 20th career victory. It was also her 17th victory in equitation over fences, which leads all active Gamecocks in an individual event.
• The Gamecocks took home an exhibition victory in jumping, where Bailey Imbus was a 76-72 winner, while Aurie Engel Schmieding earned a 71-all tie in her reining exhibition.
UP NEXT FOR THE GAMECOCKS
Carolina has the day off before traveling to No. 10 TCU on Sunday. The meet begins at 10 a.m. CT (11 a.m. ET) at Turning Point Ranch in Springtown, Texas.
Carolina last faced TCU on Oct. 2, 2015, an 11-8 win at One Wood Farm. Horsemanship MOP accolades went to Madison Thiel in the victory.