Gamecocks Collect Season-High 13 Hits in 8-3 Win over Winthrop
May 4, 2011
by Koby Padgett
COLUMBIA, S.C. - A season-high 13 hits for South Carolina (26-27) led to an 8-3 win over Winthrop (15-32) in front of 545 fans at Beckham Field on Wednesday night.
Sophomore shortstop Samie Garcia led the Gamecocks with three hits, while junior centerfielder Lauren Lackey had two, including her fourth triple of the year, and scored twice. Junior leftfielder Kaitlin Westfall also posted two hits, including a three-run homer. Junior third baseman Kelley Dillon collected two hits and added an RBI.
The Eagles took the 2-0 lead in the third when Kathryn Eberlin singled with two down, scoring Jenna Harbin and Megan Chapman after a fielder's choice and a double.
South Carolina cut the lead in half in the fourth on Garcia's RBI single, scoring Dillon from second. But the threat ended there when the Eagles caught the Gamecock runner off third on the look-back rule, using two throws before tagging out the runner on the way to the plate.
Winthrop tried to pad the lead in the fifth, getting a leadoff triple from Taylor Wright. Gamecock senior pitcher Ashley Chastain induced an infield pop before getting a fly to right, where senior Laura Mendes made the catch and the strong throw home. Senior catcher P.J. Fulmer caught the ball on the first-base side of the plate and dove back across to tag out the pinch runner, ending the frame.
The Gamecocks got two runners aboard to start the fifth, as junior centerfielder Lauren Lackey started the frame with a single before Mendes reached on an error. Westfall fought from an 0-2 count to get it full and then drove the pitch over the wall in left for her fifth homer of the year. After a groundout, freshman second baseman Dana Hathorn singled to center and stole second, setting up Dillon's RBI single up the middle.
Brittany Stoudemire got a run back in the sixth with her sacrifice fly with the bases loaded, scoring Chapman after she started the inning with a bunt single. Chastain got out of the inning with a liner to Mendes in right.
Lackey tripled home the first of three Gamecock runs in the sixth, scoring Garcia after her leadoff bunt single. Mendes drove home Lackey and reached on an error. A Westfall sac bunt moved Mendes into scoring position, and junior first baseman Molly Brossart brought her home with a hit to center.
Winthrop kept trying to the last out, as Harbin doubled but got too greedy with two down in the seventh. The relay by Garcia on Westfall's throw from the left-field corner nabbed Harbin at third, ending the game.
Chastain (4-4) went the distance, allowing three earned runs on six hits and three walks. She struck out three. Chelsey Schoenfeldt took the loss, giving up five runs, four earned, on nine hits in 4.1 innings.
The 13 hits stands as a new season high for the Gamecocks, topping three games where they had 12.
The Gamecocks close out the 2011 regular season with a three-game series at No. 21/23 LSU. Friday's game starts at 6 p.m. CDT at Tiger Park.