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Women's soccer picked fourth in SEC East

SEC coaches chose USC's women's soccer team to finish fourth this season in the Eastern division, the conference announced Thursday.

For the 11th-straight year, the 12 head coaches picked Florida was to finish first.

Coach Shelley Smith's Gamecocks are coming off a season in which the team finished 14-6-3 and made the NCAA tournament.

The Gamecocks return six starters and 12 letterwinners from last year. Danila Monteiro is the lone returning senior and is a co-captain along with juniors Blakely Mattern and Kim Miller.

Carolina also returns starters Shannon Bigbie, Samantha Diaz-Matosas, Brittiny Rhoades and Brooke Jacobs. The team will look to replace 63 percent of its point-scoring from last season and have a new goalkeeper for the first time since 2004.

USC opens its season next Aug. 23 at UNC-Wilmington.