No. 11 South Carolina went on the road and left the offense behind, putting up a lackluster showing at the plate on the way to a 6-2 loss to Charlotte.
The Gamecocks had the bases loaded in the second inning but couldn’t capitalize, and both teams were scoreless until the 49ers scored almost all of their runs in the third. After a walk, a wild pitch and an error gave Charlotte a couple of base runners, Blake Jackson and and Jack Dragum both singled to get the runners home and make it 2-0. Cam Fisher followed with a three-run homer that made the score 5-0.
The 49ers’ final run of the game came in the fourth inning, courtesy of a Spencer Nolan single that put them up 6-0. USC ended the shutout in the sixth, when Cole Messina singled to start things off and later scored when Carson Hornung grounded out, making it a 6-1 game. Their only other run was scored in the ninth, when Talmadge LeCroy singled with one out and later came home on a base hit by Braylen Wimmer. The Cocks managed to load the bases again with two outs in the inning, but again couldn’t take advantage.
Carolina starter Eli Jerzembeck pitched 2.2 innings and allowed five hits and five runs. He walked two batters, struck out four, and took the loss, making him 0-1. Eli Jones, Matthew Becker, and Cade Austin combined to go the rest of the way for the Gamecocks. Charlotte starter Collin Kramer worked five innings and gave up two hits but no runs. He issued five walks, struck eight batters out, and earned the win, making him 1-2.
Cole Messina led USC at the plate with two hits, while Hornung and Wimmer each tallied an RBI. Four different 49ers hitters had two hits apiece, while Fisher recorded three RBI.
The Cocks are now 20-2 overall, while Charlotte is 9-11. South Carolina will be back in action on Friday, when they open up a series against No. 22 Missouri. First pitch is set for 7 p.m. at Founders Park.