The Gamecocks kept things rolling on Friday, locking up their third-straight win and their first SEC series victory of the season. The win also snapped a 10-series losing streak in conference play.
The game was scoreless until the fourth inning, when Carlos Cortes got South Carolina on the board with a solo home run. The Gamecocks added another run in the fifth inning, courtesy of a Danny Blair leadoff homer that put USC up 2-0.
Tennessee ended the shutout in the sixth inning, thanks to a one-out single, double, and RBI groundout, making the score 2-1. The Gamecocks answered in the bottom of the inning, tacking on a couple of insurance runs. Justin Row knocked a one-out single, Riley Hogan followed with a base hit as well, and Cortes came through with an RBI single to make it 3-1. Hogan then came home on a wild pitch, making the score 4-1.
South Carolina’s final two runs came in the seventh inning. Jacob Olson went yard with one out, then LT Tolbert singled and later came home on a two-out RBI double by Matt Williams that put the Gamecocks up 6-1. The Vols scored their only other run in the eighth inning on an RBI single.
Starter Cody Morris had a great outing, pitching six innings and allowing just one hit and one run. He also walked one batter and tallied five strikeouts. Morris got the win, improving to 5-2 on the season. John Gilreath, Parker Coyne, and Eddy Demurias combined to pitch the other three innings.
With the win, South Carolina is now 16-11 overall and 3-5 in conference play, while Tennessee drops to 17-11 overall and 4-4 in the SEC. The Gamecocks will go for the sweep on Sunday, with first pitch set for 2 p.m. at Founders Park. Ridge Chapman will start on the mound.