South Carolina’s winning streak came to a screeching halt in a 16-4 drubbing against Texas A&M in the series opener.
The Gamecocks got on the board first, going up 1-0 in the top of the first inning after Brandt Belk started things off with a single and later scored on a base hit by Josiah Sightler. The Aggies tied it up in the bottom of the inning though, thanks to a double by Brett Minnich that made it 1-1. USC regained the lead in the third, when Belk walked to lead off and came home on an error to make the score 2-1.
Unfortunately, Texas A&M tied it up again and then took the lead in the next inning. A Ryan Targac single made it a 2-2 game, then a groundout by Trevor Werner put the Aggies up 3-2 and a bases loaded walk bumped the score to 4-2. The Cocks got one run back in the fifth, after Kevin Madden singled with one out and later came home on a base hit by Eyster that made it 4-3. Texas A&M answered by doubling their run total in the bottom of the inning. A solo shot from Austin Bost made the score 5-3, Troy Claunch singled to bump the score to 6-3, and Targac went yard to make it an 8-3 game.
The Aggies tacked on two more runs in the sixth, going up 10-3 on a home run by Jack Moss. Carolina’s final run of the game came in the seventh, after Madden started things off with a walk and later scored on a flyout by Eyster, making the score 10-4. Texas A&M broke things even wider open in the eighth, when Bost homered again to make it 11-4, Werner got hit by a pitch with the bases loaded to increase the lead to 12-4, and Jordan Thompson belted a grand slam.
With the offense doing a lot of nothing, the highlight for the Gamecocks came on defense, when they turned a triple play in the third inning. That’s kinda cold comfort given the blowout the game turned out to be, but it was fun and good to see all the same.
South Carolina starter Brett Thomas worked 3.1 innings and allowed four hits and three runs. He walked three batters, struck one out, and took the loss, making him 0-1. John Gilreath, Parker Coyne, Cam Tringali, and Aidan Hunter also took the mound in this game. Aggies reliever Joseph Menefee got the win and is now 3-2. Madden led the Cocks at the plate with three hits, while Eyster tallied two RBI. Minnich paced Texas A&M with two hits, while Thompson recorded four RBI.
USC is now 23-21 overall and 9-13 in conference play, while the Aggies are 29-15 overall and 13-9 in the SEC. The Gamecocks will try to even up the series on Saturday, with first pitch set for 3 p.m.