Columbia, S.C. -
South Carolina (22-6) is back in action on Tuesday night hosting Charleston Southern (11-16) at Carolina Stadium. First pitch is at 7 p.m. The game will be televised on SportSouth with Andy Demetra and Trey Dyson on the call. It can also be heard on the Gamecock Radio Network from IMG College including flagship station, 107.5 FM, "The Game." Derek Scott and Tommy Moody will handle the radio broadcast.
LIVE COVERAGE Radio: Gamecock Radio Network affiliates/Flagship WNKT FM 107.5 "The Game" in Columbia. Derek Scott & Tommy Moody have the call.
Television: SportSouth - Andy Demetra and Trey Dyson have the call.
Internet: Live Gametracker stats at GamecocksOnline.com. Additional coverage on Twitter @GamecockBasebll and Facebook/Gamecocksonline
PROBABLE PITCHING ROTATION
South Carolina - Colby Holmes (Sr. RHP) 2-2, 4.20 ERA, 30.0 IP, 13 BB, 25 SO
CSU - Stephen Leopard (Jr. RHP) 1-1, 5.23 ERA 10.1 IP, 5 BB, 9 SO
Charleston Southern enters the contest 11-6 including a 3-3 record in the Big South. Head coach Stuart Lake is in his fifth season at the helm of the Buccaneers. Lake served as an assistant from 1999-2002 at South Carolina under head coach Ray Tanner.
GAMECOCKS IN THE RANKINGS
South Carolina is ranked for the eighth consecutive week. The Gamecocks are No. 11 in the USA Today coaches' poll, No. 14 by Collegiate Baseball and No. 15 by Baseball America.
A LOOK BACK
South Carolina reached the halfway point of the 2013 regular season after this past week's games. The Gamecocks went 4-0 last week with a 3-1 win at College of Charleston and a weekend sweep of Texas A&M. The Gamecocks are now 22-6 on the year with a 5-4 record in the SEC.
MAJOR LEAGUE GAMECOCKS
Four former South Carolina Gamecocks are active for the 2013 MLB season. Jackie Bradley Jr. (2009-11) made his debut Monday afternoon for the Boston Red Sox vs. the New York Yankees. Justin Smoak (2006-08) begins his fourth season in the big leagues with the Seattle Mariners at Oakland on Monday night. Both Brian Roberts (1999) and Steve Pearce (2004-05) will don the Baltimore Orioles jersey. Their first game is Tuesday at Tampa Bay. In addition, a pair of Gamecocks are on 40-man rosters for their respective teams. James Darnell (2006-08) is currently on the 15-day disabled list with the San Diego Padres and is on the 40-man roster. Sam Dyson (2008-10) is also on the 40-man roster for the Miami Marlins.
Tyler Webb MAKES HIS MARK
Senior left-hander Tyler Webb tallied a save in all three victories this weekend vs. Texas A&M. Webb leads the SEC with 11 saves on the year in 15 appearances and a 0.84 ERA with 32 strikeouts in 21.1 innings pitched. Opponents are hitting .164 against him. Webb has not allowed a run in 14 of 15 relief appearances this year. Webb ranks third all-time in appearances in school history with 93 and is one short of Michael Roth (2009-12) for second all-time at 94. The record is 102 set by Matt Price (2009-12). Webb has 0.2 perfect innings in the 6-3 win in the series finale as well as 0.2 scoreless in the 6-4 win the day before and two scoreless innings with just one hit allowed in the 3-2 win in the opener.
He has pitched in relief in 81 of those appearances, with 65 relief appearances without allowing a run (80.2 percent). In career relief appearances he is 8-2 with 14 saves.
BELCHER BRINGS IT
Senior left-hander Nolan Belcher improved his record to 5-2 with a win the 6-4 victory over Texas A&M. Belcher went 8.1 innings and allowed four runs, two earned, on seven hits with no walks and nine strikeouts. Belcher has gone a span of 47.0 innings without allowing a walk. He leads the nation in strikeout-to-walk ratio with 51 strikeouts to just one walk. He is 5-2 with a 1.57 ERA in 51.2 innings pitched. Belcher ranks second in innings pitched, third in strikeouts, tied for fourth in victories and sixth in earned run average in the SEC.
Belcher pitched the first complete game shutout of his career in the 8-0 victory vs. Clemson. Belcher allowed just three hits and no walks while striking out seven batters in the win. Only one base runner reached third base the entire game for the Tigers. It is the first complete game shutout by a Gamecock pitcher since Sam Dyson on May 15, 2010 in a 5-0 win at Arkansas. Belcher's complete game shutout was also the first by a Gamecock pitcher in the Clemson series since May 4, 1986 when Rodney Richey hurled a four-hit complete game shutout in a 5-0 victory vs. the Tigers at Sarge Frye Field.
DANTZLER AT THE BAT
Senior first baseman LB Dantzler is the only Gamecock player to have started all 28 games this year. Dantzler was the Gamecocks' leading hitter in the series vs. Texas A&M with a .455 average (5-for-11) with a pair of homers, three runs scored and five RBI. Dantzler had his second two-homer game of the season in the 6-3 win vs. the Aggies. He had a key two-run double that helped spark a rally in the 3-2 win in the series opener vs. Texas A&M. In the 3-1 win at College of Charleston he had a pair of doubles and a RBI.
For the season, Dantzler leads Carolina with a .357 average (35-for-98) with nine homers and 32 RBI as well as a .454 on-base percentage and .724 slugging percentage. Dantzler ranks tied for second in the SEC in homers as well as third in slugging percentage and sixth in runs batted in. He leads the Gamecocks with eight multi-hit games as well as seven multi-RBI games.
Dantzler was named SEC Player of the Week after the Albany series when he went 9-for-13 (.692) at the plate with two doubles, two homers, six runs scored and 10 RBI. He had 17 total bases for the weekend with a .733 on-base percentage as well as a 1.308 slugging percentage. In an 8-3 win, Dantzler tallied a career-high four hits and career-high five RBI with a home run. He followed that up with a 2-for-4 game with three runs and four RBI in the 14-1 win and closed out the weekend 3-for-4 with a run scored and two RBI in the 6-4 victory.
Sophomore infielder Joey Pankake has reached base safely in 20 consecutive games. Pankake is the team's second best hitter with a .323 average (30-for-93) with 20 runs scored, three doubles, five homers and 21 RBI.
Pankake was named "Louisville Slugger's" National Player of the Week by Collegiate Baseball and was also named SEC Player of the Week on March 11. Pankake belted four homers, scored seven runs and knocked in nine runs for the Gamecocks the week of March 4-10 and he hit .438 (7-for-16).
Pankake was the second Gamecock player this year to earn SEC Player of the Week honors. LB Dantzler was an honoree by the conference on Feb. 25.
WESTMORELAND EFFECTIVE IN RELIEF
Senior left-hander Adam Westmoreland had a productive week with two victories and a save out of the bullpen. Westmoreland pitched a perfect ninth inning with a strikeout in the 3-1 win at College of Charleston to earn a save. He followed that up with 3.2 scoreless innings of relief with just three walks allowed and struck out seven batters to earn the win in a 3-2 victory over Texas A&M. His seven strikeouts tied a season-high. He would also earn the victory in the series finale with 4.2 innings of relief allowing just one run on three hits in the 6-3 win.
For the season, Westmoreland is 3-0 with a 0.96 ERA in 28.0 innings. He has 29 strikeouts to just three walks. Opponents are hitting .194 against him. Westmoreland is currently tied for first in SEC rankings for ERA.
A BRIGHT SPOT
Sophomore outfielder Connor Bright hit .364 (4-for-11) with a homer, four runs scored and a pair of RBI in the Texas A&M series. Bright hit his second home run of the season, doubled and scored two runs in the 6-3 win over the Aggies. Bright has reached base safely in 10 straight games. His average has raised to .275 (19-for-69) with 13 runs scored.
HOLMES WITH THE ANSWER
Senior right-hander Colby Holmes worked 7.1 innings and allowed just one run on four hits with a season-high eight strikeouts in the 3-1 win over College of Charleston. Holmes was in control from the opening pitch as he scattered just four hits throughout his outing. His eight strikeouts are the most since he tallied a career-high nine last year in the NCAA Regional vs. Manhattan. Holmes earned the win and is now 2-2 on the year.
ON BASE WITH CHASE
Senior infielder Chase Vergason went 3-for-4 with a run scored in the 6-4 win over Texas A&M. He was also hit twice and scored a pair of runs in the 6-3 win over the Aggies. Vergason is hitting .256 (23-for-90) with a .398 on-base percentage. Vergason has driven in 12 runs with 19 runs scored as well.
Junior outfielder Graham Saiko returned to the lineup in the Texas A&M series. The Gamecocks are 19-2 with Saiko starting. He had the game-winning RBI in the 3-2 win. He is hitting .271 (19-for-70) with 15 runs scored.
A BIT OF ENGLISH
Sophomore outfielder Tanner English went 4-for-9 (.444) in the Texas A&M series. English is hitting .305 (18-for-59) with six RBI and 11 runs scored. English leads the Gamecocks in SEC contests with a .286 batting average (6-for-21) in league games. He went 3-for-4 with a double and a pair of RBI in the 6-4 win over Texas A&M. His three hits tied a career-high.
STRIKE THEM OUT
South Carolina registered 17 strikeouts in the 3-2 win vs. Texas A&M on Thursday. That is the most strikeouts for the Gamecocks in a game this year and was one short of the single game record. Evan Beal had six strikeouts in 3.1 innings with Westmoreland striking out seven and Webb striking out four in the game.
AT THE PLATE & ON THE FIELD
South Carolina is hitting .266 (239-for-898) as a team with a .370 on-base percentage. Carolina ranks second in the SEC with 22 home runs. The Gamecocks have a .977 fielding percentage with just 24 errors for the season.
ON THE MOUND
The Gamecock pitching staff boasts a 2.62 ERA in 251.0 innings with 258 strikeouts to 72 walks. Opponents batting average is .227 against the Gamecocks. The Gamecocks lead the league with 15 saves. The 258 strikeouts is second best in the SEC. In nine SEC games, the Gamecocks have 90 strikeouts, that is best among the 14 SEC schools.
South Carolina is 20-0 this season when leading after six innings and 15-0 on the year when out-hitting the opponent. Carolina has allowed five runs or less in 25 of 28 games played this season. The Gamecocks are 21-4 when allowing five runs or less. South Carolina is 12-4 in games decided by three runs or less.
Sophomore right-hander Evan Beal was stellar in a start at Missouri. Beal allowed just one run on eight hits in 6.1 innings of work with one walk and a career-high 10 strikeouts in the 4-1 win over Missouri. Beal's 10 strikeouts are also the most by a Gamecock pitcher this season.
Beal is 2-1 with a 4.30 ERA in 23.0 innings with just eight walks to 33 strikeouts.
Beal was effective in his first start of the year and only his second career start as a Gamecock. Beal worked six scoreless innings in the 2-0 win over Rider with just one hit and two walks allowed while striking out six batters. At one point in the contest, he retired 14 consecutive batters.
GREINER NAMED TO JOHNNY BENCH AWARD WATCH LIST
South Carolina sophomore catcher Grayson Greiner is one of 48 catchers to be named to the Johnny Bench Award Watch List as announced by the Greater Wichita Sports Commission and presented by BaseballSavings.com.
Greiner did not allow a stolen base in a pair of starts vs. Texas A&M this weekend, despite the Aggies coming into the weekend with 46 team stolen bases. Greiner has been phenomenal behind the plate with just six stolen bases allowed on 11 attempts in 19 starts behind the plate.
The watch list will be narrowed down to the semifinalists, whom will be announced May 16, 2013. Ballots will be sent to the national voting panel at the end of May for a vote to determine the three finalists. The finalists will be announced June 4, 2013. A final vote among the national committee will occur during the College World Series. All finalists will be brought to Wichita and the winner will be announced at the 15th Annual Greater Wichita Sports Banquet on June 27, 2013.
DANTE ADDS TO PLATE DEPTH
Senior catcher Dante Rosenberg tallied a sac fly in the 3-1 win over College of Charleston and had a double with two RBI in the 6-3 victory over Texas A&M. In nine starts, Rosenberg has hit .294 (10-for-34) with seven runs scored and seven RBI.