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Softball

Gamecocks Win Home Opener With Key Play

Feb. 16, 2018

Final Stats

COLUMBIA, S.C. — South Carolina softball extended its Gamecock Invitational winning-steak to 17 games with a 5-1 win over Michigan State on Friday at Carolina Stadium at Beckham Field.

Leading 3-1 in the top of the fifth, centerfielder Kamryn Watts pulled an incredible 8-2-5 double play with a runner on third and one out to end the inning and keep Carolina with a two-run lead. Mackenzie Boesel later extended the lead to 5-1 with a two-run home run in the bottom of the inning thanks in part to the momentum gained with Watts' spectacular play.

"Scoring three runs in the first was a great way to start," head coach Beverly Smith said. "It takes a lot of pressure off the pitcher. I was really proud of how we came back and put three up on the board after the Michigan State run."

Michigan State jumped out to an early 1-0 lead in the top of the first, but Carolina responded quickly with three runs of its own in the bottom half of the inning to take a 3-1 lead.

From there, the pitching took over as Cayla Drotar (4-0) threw six scoreless innings to end the game. Drotar finished with just two strikeouts, but walked only one and kept Michigan State off the board the rest of the game even with scattered hits.

Boesel led the way at the plate going 1-for-2 with two RBI. Kenzi Maguire also shined, going 2-for-3 with two runs scored. Drotar and Jana Johns also contributed with hits.

With the win Carolina moved to 6-1 on the season and 1-0 at home. Carolina moved to 3-0 on the year when its opponent out-hits it.

NOTES --


The Gamecocks have scored at least one run in all seven games this season. Dating back to last season, Carolina has done so in eight of its last eight games.
Head coach Beverly Smith improved to 234-179 with the win. She is the second-winningest coach in school history.
With the complete-game, Cayla Drotar has now pitched three in her four starts to start the season.
Tonight's three double plays marked the first time Carolina had achieved the mark since May 20, 2016.
Eight different Gamecocks, seven freshmen, have made their Carolina debut thus far through six games.

UP NEXT --

Carolina returns home for the second day of the Gamecock Invitational at 5:30 PM ET against Southern Illinois. Live stats and updates will be provided on gamecocksonline.com.
 

 

 

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