Dec. 1, 2010
By Andrew Kitick
Columbia, S.C. - The South Carolina baseball team has announced its schedule for the 2011 season featuring 25 games against 2010 NCAA Tournament teams as well as 35 home games at Carolina Stadium. The defending national champions open the season on Friday, February 18 hosting a three-game series vs. Santa Clara. The schedule also includes 30 Southeastern Conference contests and a three-game series with in-state rival Clemson.
South Carolina and Clemson will meet for a second consecutive year in a unique three-game setting. The series opens on Friday, March 4 with Carolina hosting the Tigers at Carolina Stadium with first pitch set for 7 p.m. The two teams will travel to the Upstate for game two in Greenville, S.C. and face off at Fluor Field, home of the Greenville Drive, a minor league affiliate of the Boston Red Sox. First pitch on Saturday is 2 p.m. The series then concludes on Sunday afternoon at Clemson. The series finale at Doug Kingsmore Stadium is slated for 2 p.m.
The Gamecocks' 30-game SEC schedule begins on Friday, March 18 with South Carolina hosting Georgia. The Gamecocks will also host Kentucky (April 1-3), Vanderbilt (April 15-17), Auburn (April 29 - May 1) and Arkansas (May 13-15). SEC road games include Florida (March 25-27), Tennessee (April 7-9), Mississippi State (April 22-24), Ole Miss (May 6-8) and Alabama (May 19-21). The Tennessee series will feature the inaugural Thursday Night SEC Game of the Week on ESPNU.
In addition, Carolina will play 11 in-state contests this year with Charleston Southern, College of Charleston, Furman, Presbyterian, The Citadel, USC Upstate and Wofford.
The SEC Tournament is scheduled for May 25-29 at Regions Park in Hoover, Ala. with the NCAA Regionals and NCAA Super Regionals the following two weeks. The College World Series in Omaha, Neb. is slated from June 18-29.
South Carolina is the defending national champion in college baseball after winning the title at the 2010 College World Series. South Carolina has nine College World Series appearances including four in the last nine years under head coach Ray Tanner. Under Tanner's leadership South Carolina owns the fourth highest win total in the last 11 years in the nation with a 522-217 record. South Carolina is one of eight schools to appear in the NCAA Regional every season in the last 11 years including eight NCAA Super Regional appearances in that span, one of only six schools to accomplish the feat.
Carolina owns more overall wins than any SEC team in the last 11 years and more conference wins than any SEC team in the last 11 years with a 200-129 conference record. South Carolina is the only SEC school to record 40 or more wins each season from 2000-present and the only SEC school to reach the NCAA Regional every season in the last 11 years. The Gamecocks also have the most NCAA Super Regional appearances of the 12 SEC schools in the last 11 years.
Head coach Ray Tanner is the second winningest coach in Southeastern Conference history with a .692 winning percentage in 14 seasons at the helm of the Garnet & Black.
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