Volunteers Edge Out Gamecocks 4-3
May 12, 2007
Knoxville, Tenn. - Tony Delmonico went 3-for-4 with two doubles and a pair of RBI and starting pitcher Nick Hernandez allowed just two runs in five-plus innings of work as Tennessee held on for a 4-3 win over South Carolina on Saturday evening in game two of a three-game SEC series. Tennessee improves to 30-21 and 11-13 in the SEC while the loss drops Carolina to 37-15 and 14-12 on the year. The rubber game of the series is scheduled for Sunday at 2 pm and can be heard on the Gamecock Radio Network.
Hernandez allowed just two runs on two hits with two walks and a strikeout to pick up the win. He is now 4-2 on the year. Carolina starting pitcher Harris Honeycutt worked 6.2 innings and allowed four runs on six hits to suffer the loss. He is 7-5 on the year. He struck out six and walked eight in defeat.
Tennessee broke out early against Honeycutt with three runs in the bottom of the first inning. Julio Borbon and J.P. Arencibia each drew one-out walks followed up by an RBI double by Yan Gomes to score Borbon. Jeff Lockwood would add a sacrifice fly RBI to right field with Delmonico lacing a RBI single to right center to score Gomes and give the Volunteers a 3-0 lead.
From there, Honeycutt settled in and limited the Volunteers in the rest of his work. Carolina got on the scoreboard in the fourth inning with a solo home run from Phil Disher to left field. It was Disher's 12th home run of the year and second straight game with a round tripper. The Volunteers got the run back in the fifth inning though as Delmonico drove in his second run of the night with an RBI double. After working himself out of a bases loaded jam in the fourth inning, Honeycutt did the same thing in the fifth inning as he got Chad Maddox to ground into a 3-2-3 double play to limit the damage by Tennessee.
South Carolina looked to rally in the sixth inning with another run charged to Hernandez. The Volunteers went to the bullpen after a leadoff walk by Hernandez to Travis Jones and brought in reliever Aaron Everett. Gamecock infielder James Darnell greeted Everett with a single to right center that gave the Gamecocks a pair of runners with no outs. Jones would score Carolina's run on a long sacrifice fly by Justin Smoak, who just missed a home run with a deep fly ball to the center field on the warning track right near the 404 foot sign. Carolina looked to score more with a pair of runners on the corners with one out but Everett got out of the jam with a pop up to Trent Kline and a strikeout against Andrew Crisp.
South Carolina came close to tying the game in the eighth inning after a leadoff base hit by Travis Jones, but the Gamecock leadoff hitter was picked off at first base by Tennessee catcher J.P. Arencibia. Smoak, who nearly missed a homer in the sixth inning didn't miss one in the eighth inning as he launched his team-leading 17th of the year off of Everett over the left centerfield wall. Carolina almost rallied in the ninth inning as well after Crisp reached base with a one-out single against reliever Jeff Lockwood. However, both pinch hitter Kyle Enders and right fielder Harley Lail each hit fly balls to the warning tracks in left and right field respectively to end the game and secure a Tennessee win. Lockwood earned his sixth save of the year.
Darnell had two hits to lead the Gamecocks at the plate. The two home runs from Disher and Smoak gave the Gamecocks 95 on the year and past the total of 94 from the 1997 squad. The 95 home run total for this season is now the eighth highest in school history.