Seventh-ranked South Carolina holds off CSU, 6-3March 21, 2006
By CSU Sports Information
|Keith Stewart had three hits|
COLUMBIA, S.C – Seventh-ranked South Carolina and Charleston Southern met in baseball for the 76th time on Tuesday night at Sarge Frye Field with the Gamecocks taking a 6-3 win before 1,119 fans. The win was USC’s 65th in the series.
Designated hitter Drew Martin belted a fourth inning grand slam, a hit that proved to be the difference in the game. Charleston Southern out-hit the Gamecocks, 12-10, but hit into three double plays.
"We knew going in that it would be a battle and Charleston Southern made it a battle," said USC head coach Ray Tanner. "We really only had the one big inning offensively but I thought the double plays and some good pitching carried us tonight."
Freshman Will Atwood, USC’s second pitcher of the night, earned the victory, improving to 2-0 on the season. Atwood relieved starter Andy Lambert with one out in the fifth and allowed four hits over three innings of work. Wynn Pelzer recorded his first career save, finishing the eighth and ninth.
Catcher Keith Stewart tallied three hits for the Bucs, while centerfielder Chris Krogmeier and rightfielder Wes Brundridge added two hits each.
Freshman first baseman Justin Smoak and second baseman Chris Brown paced the Gamecocks with two hits each.
The game was CSU’s sixth against a nationally top 10 ranked team this season and the Bucs fell to 0-6 against those teams.
"Coach Tanner has another good club and tonight they got the big inning and made it stand," said CSU head coach Jason Murray. "We knew it would be a great challenge but we also saw this as an opportunity to play another top 10 team and to gain some great experience. We’re going to be playing some very good baseball teams in our league and our tough schedule is going to help us down the stretch."
CSU starter Mike Mead allowed one hit over three innings of work before giving way to Mark Terifaj in the fourth. Terifaj failed to retire any of the four hitters he faced, leading off the inning with a walk to Robbie Grinestaff and hitting Michael Campbell.
Justin Smoak dropped a bunt in front of the plate in a sacrifice attempt but Keith Stewart’s throw to third was high, loading the bases for Martin. Martin promptly hit the first pitch he saw over the fence in right center for a 4-0 Gamecocks lead. The blast ended Terifaj’s night and dropped his record to 0-1 on the season.
CSU answered with two runs in the fifth after loading the bases. Second baseman Ryan Smart delivered an RBI single and third baseman Sean Doherty bounced into an RBI fielder’s choice for the Bucs’ scoring.
Grinestaff’s RBI groundout scored Chris Brown as the Gamecocks added a run in the bottom of the fifth. Charleston Southern threatened in the eighth but Pelzer induced an inning ending double play off the bat of Chris Krogmeier to end the inning.
South Carolina added a run in the eighth with Reese Havens scoring on Chris Brown’s bunt single with two outs. Havens led off the inning with a double off the wall in left center.
Charleston Southern scratched out a run with two outs in the ninth as Wes Brundridge blooped a double down the rightfield line to score Mark Perry. After walking Sean Doherty, Pelzer retired Anthony Hayes on a groundout to third.
Charleston Southern hosts Coastal Carolina in a Big South Conference three-game series this weekend while the Gamecocks host Furman on Wednesday and SEC foe Florida this weekend.