CSU falls to fourth-ranked South Carolina, 1-0March 9, 2005
By CSU Sports Information
|Josh Evans tossed three hitless innings for Bucs|
COLUMBIA, S.C. - Pitching was the order of the day as Charleston Southern and fourth-ranked South Carolina battled in their only meeting of the season at Sarge Frye Field on Wednesday night. In the end, the Gamecocks had just enough, winning, 1-0, before a crowd of 2,108.
With temperatures in the low 40’s, both teams struggled offensively. The Gamecocks managed just six hits, three of them infield singles, while the Buccaneers mustered only one hit.
South Carolina improved to 13-1 with the win while the Buccaneers dropped their fourth straight to fall to 8-9. CSU hosts UNC Asheville in a three-game Big South series this weekend while South Carolina takes on Clemson in single games on Saturday and Sunday.
“I thought our guys pitched very well tonight and I thought Charleston Southern threw some quality arms at us,” said USC head coach Ray Tanner. “It was a tough, well-played baseball game. Their guys made some quality pitches to get out of some jams and we had just enough to close it out. We were fortunate to win.”
CSU starter Josh Evans held the Gamecocks hitless in his three innings of work while USC starter Wynn Pelzer went 5 2/3 innings before allowing a hit.
Both teams went hitless until the fourth when South Carolina struck first with an infield single by Steve Pearce. The Gamecocks threatened in that inning with two on and one out but Ian Holmen struck out Michael Campbell and got Cory Vanderhook on a pop f ly to center.
USC also threatened in the fifth with back-to-back singles by Joey Friddle and Neil Geisler but Holmen worked out of that jam, striking out Chris Brown to end the threat.
CSU shortstop Billy Dalton singled to left with two outs in the sixth for the Buccaneers first hit. Pelzer, a freshman from Holly Hill, allowed three baserunners through six innings but walked Jordan Haar to lead off the seventh before leaving the game.
After Haar stole second with no outs, cleanup hitter Graham Maiden popped a bunt up back to USC reliever Andrew Cruse, who made the catch and threw back to second to double off Haar.
The Gamecocks finally broke into the scoring column in the seventh. Davy Gregg was hit by Payton Tweddale with one out. Gregg stole second and advanced to third when the throw skipped into centerfield. Steven Tolleson was then hit by Ryan Sowers and Chris Brown walked to load the bases with one out. Pearce followed with an infield single up the middle, scoring Gregg but Sowers escaped further damage by striking out pinch-hitter Ryan Mahoney and getting Campbell on a ground out.
CSU got a runner to second with one out in the eighth but USC closer Brent Marsh retired Justin Fyle and Drew Grosse to end the threat. Marsh recorded three outs in the ninth to record his third save of the season.
“It’s a tough game to lose because we had some opportunities offensively but we failed to execute when we had to,” CSU head coach Jason Murray said. “Our kids are battling and giving a great effort but in the end it comes down to executing. I thought our pitchers were outstanding all night. They competed and gave us a chance to win.”