April 2, 2014
FAYETTEVILLE, ARK. - South Carolina (25-3, 6-3 SEC) continues conference play this week with a three-game series at Arkansas (18-11, 4-5 SEC). First pitch for the opener on Thursday is 8 p.m. ET with the game televised live on ESPNU. Game two of the series is Friday at 7:35 p.m. ET. Saturday's series finale will be televised on Cox Sports Television and is scheduled for 7 p.m. ET. All three games can also be heard on the Gamecock IMG Network including flagship station, 107.5 FM, "The Game."
South Carolina is ranked No. 1 by Collegiate Baseball, No. 2 by Baseball America and the NCBWA as well as No. 3 in the ESPN/USA Today Coaches' poll and Perfect Game.
Television: Thursday - ESPNU (Dave Neal, Kyle Peterson & Chris Burke); Saturday - Cox Sports Television
Internet: Additional coverage on Twitter @GamecockBasebll and Facebook/Gamecocksonline
PROBABLE PITCHING ROTATION
A LOOK BACK
Left-handed pitcher Vince Fiori worked 1.1 hitless innings of relief to pick up his first win of the season. He is 1-0 on the year. Appalachian State starter Taylor Thurber suffered the loss and is now 0-3 for the season. He allowed a run on three hits in 2.1 innings.
After three scoreless innings, the Gamecocks took a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the fourth. With his second hit in as many at bats, Joey Pankake singled up the middle, stole second and scored on Connor Bright's RBI single.
South Carolina starter Evan Beal hurled 5.1 scoreless innings allowing just two hits and striking out three batters.
The Mountaineers capitalized on a South Carolina error in the top of the sixth to even the score at 1-1. With two outs, Gamecock reliever Josh Reagan hit Preston Troutman with a pitch and then overthrew an attempted pickoff, which allowed Troutman to advance to third. Jaylin Davis followed with a base hit to left field to bring Troutman home.
It remained that way until the ninth inning when Connor Bright opened the frame with a single up the middle and advanced to second on pinch hitter Jordan Gore's sacrifice bunt. With a runner in scoring position, Greiner stepped up to the plate. After working the count full, he hammered a 3-2 pitch to left field allowing Bright to score and sealing the Gamecocks' victory.
Carolina's nine-hit evening included a 3-for-4 game for Bright. Pankake went 2-for-3 to extend his hitting streak to 16 games. Jaylin Davis led App State with two hits.
PANKAKE WARMING UP
GREINER NAMED PLAYER OF THE WEEK
South Carolina rallied from a 3-1 deficit in the top of the ninth with four runs in a 5-3 win at Clemson on March 2, 2014. Four consecutive two-out hits in the top of the ninth inning led to four runs. Trailing 3-1 entering the top of the ninth inning, the Gamecocks got things started with a base hit up the middle of the bat of Kyle Martin. With two outs and Martin still on first base, Grayson Greiner kept the inning alive with a single up the middle as well. Pinch hitter Brison Celek fought to a 2-2 count against Clemson reliever Clate Schmidt before knocking a base hit into left field to load the bases. That set the stage for sophomore shortstop Marcus Mooney, who jumped on the first pitch from Schmidt for a single into center field. Martin scored as did Greiner to tie the game. It was a tight play at the plate as center fielder Tyler Slaton's throw made it to home plate, but Clemson catcher Chris Okey was unable to hold on to the ball on a tag attempt as Greiner was sliding in for the tying run. With runners on second and third, Tanner English fought off a pair of two strike pitches and then belted a double to left field scoring both runners and giving the Gamecocks a two-run lead. Junior right-hander Cody Mincey retired all three Tiger batters he faced in the bottom of the ninth inning to secure the Carolina victory.
On March 15, 2014, the Gamecocks rallied from three runs down with two outs in the bottom of the ninth inning to defeat Ole Miss 5-4 in 10 innings. A two-out RBI single by Connor Bright and a two-run homer by pinch hitter Max Schrock tied it in the ninth with pinch hitter Brison Celek winning it for the Gamecocks in the 10th frame with a RBI single.
Last week, Grayson Greiner's walk-off grand slam capped a six-run bottom of the ninth inning as South Carolina rallied from three runs down with two outs and no runners on base to defeat Tennessee 9-6 for a second consecutive walk-off win on the afternoon.
Trailing 6-3 and down to its final at-bat the Gamecocks made their final rally push as pinch hitter Brison Celek kept the inning alive with a base hit to center field. The rally then continued with Max Schrock as the sophomore drove a 1-1 pitch to right field from reliever Josh Peterson just fair of the foul pole in right field for a home run cutting the deficit to one run. After the Volunteers made a change to left-hander Drake Owenby, the Gamecocks stayed alive as a fly ball off the bat of Joey Pankake was mishandled by right fielder Scott Price putting the tying run on second base. Kyle Martin drew a walk and Connor Bright was hit on a 2-2 pitch from Owenby to load the bases and set the stage for Greiner. Tennessee would make one more change as right-hander Peter Lenstrom entered from the bullpen. On a 1-0 pitch, Greiner belted the game-winning homer to left field setting off a frenzy in Carolina Stadium. It was Greiner's fourth home run of the season.
SEDDON SEALS IT
CROWE MAKES AN IMPACT
Crowe was honored twice by the Southeastern Conference in the first two weeks of the regular season. On February 24, he earned SEC Freshman of the Week honors after working 6.1 scoreless innings in a 6-0 win over Eastern Kentucky with just four hits allowed and one walk to pick up his second win of the season.
The first week, Crowe was SEC Pitcher of the Week. He had an impressive debut as he hurled 6.1 hitless innings in his first career start. Crowe walked just one and hit one batter while finishing with five strikeouts to earn his first career win in a Gamecock uniform. Bucknell had just one runner reach second base and none reach third base while Crowe was on the mound. Crowe retired 13 consecutive batters in a row before coming out of the game as he reached his pitch count total.
Greiner's .363 average (33-for-91) is second best on the team. He leads the Gamecocks with a .549 slugging percentage and 30 RBI. His 30 RBI is among league leaders.
Greiner won the Tom Price award as the MVP for South Carolina in the weekend series vs. Clemson. Greiner hit .400 (4-for-10) for the weekend with four runs scored. His grand slam homer helped lift South Carolina to a 9-6 win. He had a team-high four walks on the weekend as well.
JACK OF ALL TRADES
Wynkoop pitched 7.1 scoreless innings and struck out a career-high 10 batters in a 2-0 win over Eastern Kentucky on February 22. He allowed just three hits and one walk.
ELLIOTT LEADS IT OFF
MONTGOMERY GETS IT STARTED
A JOLT FROM JORDAN
MINCEY WITH AN APPEARANCE
A LITTLE BIT OF ENGLISH
A BRIGHT SPOT
WIDENER SHOWS VERSATILITY
MAX IT OUT
Schrock has a team-high five homers and 12 RBI.
IN A PINCH WITH BRISON
REAGAN SUPPLIES RELIEF
MOONEY IN THE MIDDLE
AT THE PLATE & IN THE FIELD
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