After a rough series against Auburn and given the Gamecocks’ recent lack of success playing games in Charlotte, Tuesday night’s game against No. 3 North Carolina State seemed poised to be a bad one. And then Jacob Olson played hero. More on that later.
The Wolfpack got on the board first, taking a 4-0 lead in the top of the first thanks to a pair of two-run homers. That lead was short-lived though, because South Carolina answered in the bottom of the inning with seven runs. Noah Campbell walked to start things off, George Callil singled, TJ Hopkins reached on a fielder’s choice that scored Campbell to make the score 4-1, then Luke Berryhill went yard to make it 4-3. Olson followed with a game-tying solo shot, then Ian Jenkins and Chris Cullen knocked back-to-back base hits and Brady Allen homered to put the Gamecocks up 7-4.
The Wolfpack got one run back in the next inning on an RBI single that made it a 7-5 game. USC added another run in the fourth, when Hopkins came through with an RBI fielder’s choice to make the score 8-5.
A sac fly got NC state another run in the top of the next innjng, making it 8-6, then the Wolfpack tied it in the eighth on an error. The Gamecocks left the bases loaded in the bottom of the inning, but then they made the bottom of the ninth very #fun and #good. With one out, Hopkins singled, Berryhill got into a fielder’s choice, and Olson came through with the walkoff two-run shot to give South Carolina a huge victory.
Gamecocks starter Dylan Harley worked one inning and gave up three hits and five runs. TJ Shook, John Gilreath, and Wesley Sweatt went the rest of the way, and Sweatt earned the win, making him 2-2. Wolfpack reliever Cameron Cotter took the loss and is now 2-1.
USC improves to 18-11 overall, while North Carolina State is now 27-3. The Gamecocks will be back in action on Thursday, when they open up a series against Alabama in Tuscaloosa.