Smoak Homers Three Times As Gamecocks Defeat Wofford 10-1
April 23, 2008
Columbia, S.C. - For the second time in eight days, Justin Smoak tied a school record with three home runs in one game including a sixth inning grand slam and freshman right-handed pitcher Sam Dyson hurled six scoreless innings as South Carolina defeated Wofford 10-1 on Wednesday evening at Sarge Frye Field. Carolina improves to 31-11 on the year. The Gamecocks have won of 11 of the last 12 games. Wofford drops to 20-22 on the year. Carolina heads to Baton Rouge, La. this weekend for a three-game series with LSU. First pitch for the series opener is scheduled for 8 pm ET on Friday evening with live audio broadcast available at gamecocksonline.com and on the Gamecock Radio Network.
Smoak finished 3-for-5 with eight RBIs on the evening and extended his hitting streak to 16 games. He now owns a team-high 16 homers on the year and a school record career 55 homers. The Gamecocks had 14 hits on the evening including two apiece from Reese Havens, Whit Merrifield and Andrew Crisp. Wofford finished with five in the game including two from Sterling Dye.
Four times this season, the Gamecocks have tied the single-game school record for home runs in a game. Both James Darnell and Justin Smoak have each put together a pair of three-homer games this year. Smoak had three homers and nine RBIs last Tuesday in the 14-4 victory over USC Upstate.
Dyson took a no-hitter into the fifth inning and struck out six batters to improve to 5-0 on the year. He allowed just two hits and walked three batters in six innings of work. Wofford starting pitcher Jordan Mickleberry suffered the loss and is 2-2 on the year. He allowed four runs on nine hits.
South Carolina broke ahead 2-0 in the bottom of the first inning. Whit Merrifield reached base with one out on a bunt single and would score on a two-run homer from Justin Smoak. The Gamecock first baseman crushed a 1-0 pitch from Jordan Mickleberry over the right field wall giving Carolina a two-run edge.
That lead increased to 3-0 in the second inning as a two-out single from Reese Havens scored Andrew Crisp. South Carolina added another single run in the fourth inning when Scott Wingo launched a solo homer to right field. It was Wingo's fourth round tripper of the year and his third in the last week.
With a 4-0 lead, the Gamecocks gave the pitchers some breathing room with four more runs in the sixth inning Smoak's third career grand slam. A hit by pitch to Scott Wingo, a walk to Reese Havens and Whit Merrifield reaching base on an error gave the Gamecocks bases loaded for Smoak. On the first pitch from reliever Pete Noordsy, Smoak drilled a homer to left center to give Carolina the 8-0 lead.
After a Wofford run in the seventh inning, South Carolina would score twice more with Smoak's third homer of the game a two-run shot that put USC ahead 10-1.