No. 23 South Carolina’s high-powered offense was on display again on Tuesday, as the Gamecocks routed Winthrop 19-3 to stay perfect on the season.
USC got on the board first, after Cole Messina and Talmadge LeCroy singled to start the second inning and Gavin Casas walked to load the bases with no outs. Messina came home when Will McGillis hit into a fielder’s choice, making it 1-0, then Ethan Petry walked to reload the bases and Evan Stone knocked a base hit that brought in Casas and McGillis, putting the home team up 3-0.
The Eagles ended the shutout in the fourth, when a double from Joseph Svetitz made the score 3-1. The Cocks got that run and more back in the bottom of the inning, though. Petry singled to lead off, Stone walked, and Braylen Wimmer went yard to make it a 6-1 game.
Winthrop added another run in the next inning, this time courtesy of an error, making the score 6-2. Carolina had an answer again though, doubling their run total in the bottom of the fifth. With one out, McGillis walked, then Petry hit a bomb to bump the score 8-2. With two outs, Carson Hornung, Wimmer, and Caleb Denny all walked, then Messina came through with a grand slam to give the home team a 12-2 lead.
The Gamecocks broke the game even more wide open in the sixth. McGillis started things off by taking a walk, then Petry homered again to make it 14-2. Stone followed with a base hit, Hornung walked, and Denny went yard with one out to put South Carolina up 17-2. Each team scored one run in the seventh, with the Eagles’ coming on a single by McKinley Erves, making the score 17-3. The Cocks then bumped the lead to 18-3 thanks to a base hit from David Cromer that brought home Jonathan French, who’d also singled. The final run of the game came in the eighth, when Messina tripled with one out and later scored on a French double.
USC starter Eli Jerzembeck worked four innings and allowed four hits and one run. He didn’t walk any batters and struck out four. Eli Jones, Nick Proctor, and Zach Zedalis also pitched in this game, and Jones got the win, making him 1-0. Winthrop starter Brody Hopkins pitched three innings and gave up three hits and three runs. He walked two batters, struck four out, and took the loss, making him 0-1.
Messina and Petry led the Gamecocks at the plate with three hits and four RBI each. Three Eagles batters each tallied two hits, while Svetitz and Erves each recorded an RBI.
Carolina improves to 4-0 on the season, while Winthrop is now 3-1. The Cocks will be back in action on Wednesday when they host Queens. First pitch is scheduled for 4 p.m. at Founders Park and James Hicks is slated to start on the mound for the home team.