After a lackluster weekend offensively against Alabama, South Carolina got back on track against The Citadel with a commanding win on Tuesday night.
The Gamecocks got out to an early lead, going up 2-0 in the first inning. TJ Hopkins started things off with a single, Jonah Bride got hit by a pitch, and Matt Williams walked to load the bases. Alex Destino grounded out to get Hopkins home, then Chris Cullen knocked an RBI single to bring Bride in.
South Carolina broke things wide open in the next inning. LT Tolbert led off with a base hit, then came home on a Hopkins double to make the score 3-0. Bride followed with an RBI single, another run came in on a wild pitch, and then Williams singled as well. Destino and Cullen brought in two more runs with a pair of RBI singles, bumping the score up to 7-0. Riley Hogan walked to load the bases again, and Jacob Olson smacked a bases-clearing double to put the Gamecocks up 10-0. Tolbert followed with an RBI double, and when all was said and done, South Carolina led 11-0.
The Bulldogs got their only run of the night in the bottom of the second, and it came courtesy of a leadoff homer from Joe Sabatini.
The Gamecocks tacked on another run in the fourth inning, after Tolbert led off with a single, Hopkins knocked a one-out base hit, and Bride came through with an RBI triple. Yet another run came in the fifth inning, as Destino started things off with a base hit and came home on an RBI single from Olson. South Carolina added another run in the eighth inning, after Danny Blair made it safely to first on an error and came home thanks to an RBI single by Williams. The Gamecocks’ final run of the game came on a solo shot by Olson in the ninth inning.
Starter Cody Morris had a strong outing, working five innings and allowing just two hits and one run. He didn’t walk any batters and struck out eight. Sawyer Bridges and Graham Lawson combined to go the rest of the way for the Gamecocks.
With the win, South Carolina improves to 18-6 overall, while The Citadel drops to 9-16. The Gamecocks will be back in action on Friday, when they travel to begin a weekend series against Auburn. First pitch is set for 7 p.m.