SPRINGTOWN, Texas — The eighth-ranked University of South Carolina equestrian team trailed throughout the day but never gave up on Sunday afternoon, rallying for a 9-8 victory over No. 10 TCU at Turning Point Ranch. The victory is the fourth this season for the Gamecocks against a top-10 opponent.
The Gamecocks fell behind, 3-0, during the first event of the day and did not hold a lead until the final ride of the day was complete. Down 8-7, Carolina got a reining victory from Paisley Roberts to even the score with one rider left. That rider, TCU’s Carley Montemuro, was unable to match the 64.5 from Carolina’s Bridgett White, giving the Gamecocks a 9-8 victory.
South Carolina is now 5-5 with the victory, while the Horned Frogs are 4-5.
QUOTING HEAD COACH BOO MAJOR
“I am so proud of our team. It came down to the last ride of the day to determine the winner, which is always exciting. We really came together today and strived to be better, and we were. It was a total team effort.”
EQUITATION OVER FENCES RECAP
TCU took a 3-0 lead in jumping before the Gamecocks earned their first point of the day. Madison Sellman earned Carolina’s lone point, an 83-79 victory on Phia over Jayme Omand.
MOP laurels went to TCU’s Kari Hancock, an 84-77 winner in her matchup.
The Gamecocks got back in the match by winning three horsemanship points. Paige Stopperich earned a 77.5-77 win on Shy over Rylee Morgan, and Megan Overberg followed with a 74.5-73.5 victory over Megan McMullen on Jake. The third point came from Madison Thiel, who scored a 75-73.5 win on Dream over Laska Anderson.
Overberg earned Carolina’s lone MOP accolade of the day for her performance. At the end of horsemanship, TCU held a 5-4 lead.
EQUITATION ON THE FLAT RECAP
The two sides each won a pair of matchups on the flat, with TCU putting the first two points on the board to increase their lead to 7-4. But Carolina fought back; Sydney Smith rode Carmeline to a 78-67 victory over Omand, and Chloe Schmidt was an 89-83 winner on Ozzie over Emelie Burgess.
Carley Barnett was the MOP for TCU after notching a score of 90 in her ride.
The Gamecocks trailed, 7-6, when the final half of reining commenced. They evened the score at 7-all when Thiel earned her second victory of the day, a 70.5-68 win over Morgan on Cash. The two sides split the next matchup when Bailey Walters and Brooke Boyle each scored a 65.5 on Molly, but the Frogs surged back ahead when MG Reed’s MOP performance narrowly topped Caroline Gute, 74-73.5, on Reno.
That victory pushed TCU within a point of victory, but it also set the stage for a memorable Gamecock rally. Roberts entered the arena needing to top Carly Lombard’s 70 on Peppy, and she did with a score of 70.5. That left the meet in the hand of Montemuro, who was facing White’s 64.5 on Scooby. When the TCU rider was assigned a zero score, the Gamecocks were victorious.
- South Carolina is now 8-2 all-time against TCU.
- Overberg’s MOP honor was her second of the season.
UP NEXT FOR THE GAMECOCKS
South Carolina has just two regular-season meets left after their Texas trip, beginning with a showdown against Auburn. The Tigers come to One Wood Farm at 10 a.m. ET on Feb. 25 for Carolina’s annual Equifest Kids Day event.
Carolina is looking to even the season series with the Tigers after suffering a 13-5 road loss on Nov. 18.