After a tough weekend in Arkansas, the Gamecocks' offense returned and the team got back on the right track against the Paladins tonight.
Joey Pankake started the game with a single, advanced on a sac bunt from Marcus Mooney, and crossed the plate thanks to a Max Schrock single. Between errors and an RBI single from Kyle Martin, it was 3-0 USC by the time the first inning was done.
Furman fought back in the second, though, when Andrew MacLatchie came through with a two-RBI base hit, making it 3-2. Fortunately, that was the end of their scoring, and Carolina broke things open in the third.
With two runners on, Martin went yard to bump the score up to 6-2, and Elliott Caldwell contributed a two-out RBI single to make it 7-2, before he was out trying to reach second base.
Both offenses were pretty quiet throughout the middle of the game, and each side turned a handful of double plays, too. The Gamecocks added a little insurance in the top of the seventh, though, an error and Connor Bright brought home two more runs, increasing South Carolina's lead to 9-2.
Gamecocks starter Evan Beal was not sharp, and he struggled enough that he didn't make it out of the second inning. Taylor Widener took over and had a great outing. He worked 4.2 innings and allowed one hit, no runs, walked one batter, and struck out four. He earned the win, and is now 2-0. Curt Britt and John Parke also pitched for USC tonight.
Mooney and Martin led the Gamecocks with three hits each. Five Paladins recorded one hit each.
South Carolina improves to 27-5 while Furman drops to 11-22. The Gamecocks will be back in action on Friday, when they host Florida for the first game of a three-game series. First pitch is set for 7 p.m.