Top 10 Showdown As LSU Visits In Final SEC Series Of The Year
May 16, 2012
Columbia, S.C. - South Carolina (38-13, 17-9 SEC) is back in action with a three-game series vs. LSU (40-13, 17-10 SEC) beginning on Thursday night at Carolina Stadium. First pitch for the opener on Thursday is set for 7 p.m. with the game televised live on FS South and FS Carolinas. Friday's game is also at 7 p.m. with live streaming available at GamecocksOnline.com and the game also available on Cox Sports Television. Saturday's game is set for 1 p.m. and will be televised on ESPNU. All three games can be heard on the Gamecock Radio Network from IMG College including flagship station 107.5 FM, "The Game."
South Carolina is ranked No. 2 in this week's USA Today/ESPN coaches' poll and Baseball America as well as No. 3 by Collegiate Baseball. LSU ranks No. 4 by Collegiate Baseball and No. 9 in this week's USA Today/ESPN coaches' poll and by Baseball America.
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Senior left-hander Michael Roth hurled seven scoreless innings with just three hits allowed on the way to a 3-0 victory over Georgia in the series opener on Friday night in Athens. Roth struck out six batters in the victory and combined with Tyler Webb and Matt Price for a shutout of the Bulldogs. Roth is now 5-0 on the year with a 2.60 ERA in 86.2 innings pitched with opponents batting just .194 against him. He ranks fourth in the SEC in innings pitched and opposing batting average as well as fifth in earned run average.
Junior third baseman LB Dantzler hit a solo home run in Friday's 3-0 win over Georgia and had a two-run double in the ninth inning of the 6-5 loss to the Bulldogs on Saturday. Dantzler is hitting .255 for the season (50-for-196) with 11 doubles, nine homers and 43 RBI as well as a .449 slugging percentage. In SEC games, Dantzler has six homers and 24 RBI. That RBI total is second best among conference players.
Junior right-hander Matt Price earned a save in the 3-0 win over Georgia. Price worked one scoreless inning of relief with two strikeouts to tally his eighth save of the season. Seven of his eight saves have come in league play. His seven saves in the SEC are the most among all SEC pitchers as well. Price is 4-4 on the year with a 3.72 ERA with 63 strikeouts in 58 innings pitched. Opponents are batting just .195 against him. Price is the all-time saves leader at South Carolina with 38 as well as appearances with 94 for the Garnet & Black.
Junior outfielder Evan Marzilli belted a three-run homer and tied a career-high with four RBI in the 7-0 win vs. Furman on May 9. He followed that up with a two-out RBI single in the 3-0 win over Georgia. Marzilli is hitting .288 (57-for-198) for the year with a .378 on-base percentage. He also leads the team with 10 stolen bases.
The 7-0 win over Furman on Wednesday night featured right-hander Joel Seddon and three Gamecock relievers combining for a four-hit shutout of the Paladins. Seddon allowed just two hits and one walk while tying a career-high with four strikeouts in five scoreless innings of work. He is now 2-0 on the year. Junior left-hander Nolan Belcher, junior right-hander Patrick Sullivan and senior left-hander Logan Munson helped Seddon close out the shutout victory.
Junior first baseman Christian Walker continues to be productive for the Gamecocks. Walker had a pair of hits in the Georgia series and is now batting .343 (61-for-178) for the season with nine homers and 45 RBI. He owns a .471 on-base percentage and a .556 slugging percentage. In SEC games, Walker is also among the best as he ranks first in walks (27), second in runs scored (26), second in on-base percentage (.479), tied for second in home runs (6), third in slugging percentage (.576), fourth in runs batted in (21), and ninth in total bases (53). Walker is up to 232 career hits for the Garnet & Black, 13 hits shy of Hank Small (1972-75) for 10th on the All-Time hits list at South Carolina. He also has a season-high seven-game hitting streak.
Junior left-hander Tyler Webb made two more appearances out of the bullpen in the Georgia series and is now tied for the SEC lead in appearances for the season with 28 on the year. Webb is 4-0 with a 1.77 ERA and has 36 strikeouts to just eight walks in 35.2 innings pitched. Opponents are hitting just .215 against him.
Freshman outfielder Tanner English tied a season-high with four hits in the 6-5 loss to Georgia on Saturday. English leads the Gamecocks with 19 multi-hit games and is second on the team in batting average with a .315 mark (58-for-184). He also has nine stolen bases.
Freshman shortstop Joey Pankake owns a season-high six-game hitting streak and has reached base in 11 straight games. Pankake has moved his batting average to .290 (49-for-169) with 36 runs scored, a team-high 13 doubles, one triple, two homers and 20 RBI. He has a .381 on-base percentage. He was 1-for-4 with two runs in the 7-0 win vs. Furman and tallied a pair of hits in the Georgia series.
Freshman catcher Grayson Greiner tallied his first career triple and scored a run in the 3-0 win vs. Georgia. Greiner owns a .284 (23-for-81) batting average in the league with 12 of his 23 hits, extra base hits (eight doubles, one triple, three homers). He has also driven in 18 runs and has a .519 slugging percentage in SEC contests. His slugging percentage is 10th best in the league in conference games.
South Carolina leads the SEC in fielding with a .980 fielding percentage on the year. The Gamecocks also rank fourth in earned run average at 3.18 and eighth in hitting with a .275 batting average. The Gamecock offense also leads the league with 213 walks and the Gamecock pitchers are the league's best in opposing batting average (.223).
South Carolina is 11-10 on the year in one-run games as well as 23-11 in games decided by three runs or less.