The Gamecocks used a combination of small ball and more dingers to trounce Charleston Southern on Saturday afternoon, recording their second series victory of the season.
Unlike in most games this season, South Carolina trailed early. The Buccaneers took a 1-0 lead in the first inning on a home run, but fortunately, that was short-lived, as the Gamecocks tied things up and took the lead in the third. LT Tolbert led off with a single, Chris Cullen walked, and Justin Row singled with one out to load the bases. Hunter Taylor came through with an RBI single, then Noah Campbell hit a two-run single to put the home team up 3-1.
South Carolina tacked on three more runs in the fourth inning. Jacob Olson walked to start things off, Taylor singled with one out, and Carlos Cortes knocked a two-run single with one out to make it 5-1. TJ Hopkins followed with an RBI double that made it 6-1 Gamecocks.
Two more USC runs came in the next inning, courtesy of a home run by Olson that put the Gamecocks up 8-1. CSU’s final run of the game came in the top of the sixth inning, thanks to a sac fly that made the score 8-2.
In the bottom of the sixth, the Gamecocks broke things even more wide open. Leadoff hitter Noah Campbell got to second base on an error, then Cortes belted a two-run dinger to put South Carolina into double digits and make the score 10-2. With one out, Jonah Bride tripled, then came home on an RBI single by Tolbert to make it 11-2 Gamecocks. A three-run homer by Row brought in the final three runs of the day.
Starting pitcher Cody Morris had a good outing, working five innings and giving up four hits and two runs. He walked one batter and struck out three. Morris earned the win and is now 2-0 on the season. Sawyer Bridges, Corey Stone, Carmen Mlodzinski, and Graham Lawson also pitched in this game.
South Carolina improves to 6-1 with the win, while Charleston Southern falls to 2-4. The Gamecocks will go for the sweep on Sunday afternoon, with first pitch scheduled for noon at Founder’s Park. Ridge Chapman will start on the mound.