AUBURN, Ala. – The Auburn soccer team faces one of its biggest challenges of the season this weekend as it hosts No. 14 South Carolina and No. 6 Florida on Friday and Sunday, respectively, at the Auburn Soccer Complex. Match times are 7pm on Friday and 2pm on Sunday, with the match against Florida airing live on ESPNU.
"We've got two of the best teams in the conference in Florida and South Carolina. They are both undefeated (in SEC play) and they are both top-15 teams," Auburn Head Coach Karen Hoppa said. "These are huge matches, not just for SEC standings but also for us getting into the postseason and a NCAA bid. Fortunately for us they are at home so hopefully we will have a big crowd and we will have some confidence playing on our home field."
Auburn enters the weekend 8-4-0, 2-2-0 SEC, and is looking to make a move up the SEC standings while facing the top two teams in the league. Currently sitting in second place in the SEC West, four points behind division-leading Alabama, Auburn is looking for its second win in the last five seasons against South Carolina (9-2-2, 3-0-1 SEC) and its first over Florida (10-1-1, 4-0-0 SEC) since 2005.
"We have to respond from our frustration of last Sunday (of losing at LSU) and come out ready to play. South Carolina has one of the top players in the league in Kayla Grimsley. She is going to be a handful. The other thing about South Carolina is the probably have the toughest defense in the league as well," Hoppa said. "Florida has been the dominant team in the league for the majority of SEC soccer history and they are playing like it again right now."
Friday night is Auburn Thunder Soccer Club Night and Boys and Girls Club Night. Sunday is Carnival Sunday and there will be inflatable games, cheek tattoos from the Auburn cheerleaders, airbrush face painting, a balloon artist, a prize wheel, Aubie and more. The first 500 fans into the match will receive an Auburn Fan Scroll from Verizon and it is Tigers Kids Blub Day and Camper Reunion Day.