Gamecocks Shut Out George Mason 5-0; Campbell Strikes Out 11
Feb. 29, 2004
Columbia, S.C. - Junior left-hander Matt Campbell scattered five hits and struck out 11 in eight innings Sunday and Brendan Winn drove in three runs with a home run and a single and sixth ranked South Carolina defeated George Mason 5-0 to knock the Patriots from the unbeaten list.
South Carolina improved its record to 9-0 and George Mason dropped to 5-1in the final game of the Gamecock Round Robin Classic. In the first of two games Sunday Duquesne (1-2) defeated winless Radford (0-6), 12-9.
Campbell picked up his second win of the season and left-hander Eric Gibbons, the George Mason starter, took the loss to fall to 1-1.
Campbell struck out seven of the first 10 batters that he faced and added four more before leaving after eight innings. Chad Blackwell retired the Patriots in order in the ninth inning and added two strikeouts to give the Gamecocks 13 for the game and 112 in 79 innings over the first nine games of the season.
Campbell went to three balls on only three batters and did not issue a walk. Gamecock pitchers have recorded 112 strikeouts and have walked only 12. The shutout was the fifth in nine games and lowered the South Carolina pitching staff earned run average to 1.25.
The Gamecocks also played errorless baseball for the seventh time in nine games. South Carolina has committed only three errors and has a team fielding percentage of .991.
The Sunday game before a crowd of 4,403 shaped up as a pitching duel between Campbell and Gibbons until the bottom of the fourth inning when the Gamecocks hit for the cycle and scored three times after Gibbons retired the first two batters in the inning. Landon Powell singled and Winn hit his fourth home run of the season. Junior second baseman Kevin Melillo followed with his first career triple and freshman designated hitter Tommy King doubled to score Melillo.
In the seventh inning Melillo beat out a bunt, moved to second on a sacrifice by King, and scored on a two out single by Davy Gregg. The fifth run scored in the eighth inning. Bryan Triplett singled to stretch his hitting streak to nine games, stole second, moved to third on a fly ball out, and scored on a base hit by Winn.
Campbell gave up a leadoff double to Robby Jacobsen in the third inning but retired the next three batters. Chris Looze singled with two outs in the fourth. Adam Innerst and Jimmy Freund singled in he fifth, the only inning that George Mason had two base runners. The threat ended when GMU left fielder Josh Campbell struck out and Powell, the Gamecock catcher, caught Innerst trying to steal third for an inning ending double play.
Looze got his second hit of the game leading off the GMU seventh, but was left stranded.
South Carolina collected 10 hits, the eighth consecutive game in which the Gamecocks have had double digit hits. Powell, Winn and Melillo each had two hits.
The only contest with fewer than 10 hits was the 3-2 season opening win over Charleston Southern when South Carolina had seven hits. The team batting average is .393.
The Winn homer kept a string going where the Gamecocks have homered at least once in every game. The nine game homer total is 24.
The next action for South Carolina id a 5 p.m., meeting Wednesday at Sarge Frye Field against Furman, South Carolina meets Clemson next weekend, Saturday at Sarge Frye Field and Sunday at Clemson.