March 31, 2015

USC takes bite out of Georgia in final game of series (VIDEO)

Jack Wynkoop earned his first career save Sunday. (file photo).

Jack Wynkoop earned his first career save Sunday. (file photo).

Tied 4-4 in the bottom of the sixth, freshman Hunter Taylor belted his first career home run and Madison Stokes added a two run double in the bottom of the seventh as seventh-ranked South Carolina defeated Georgia 8-5 in the final game of a three-game series on Sunday afternoon at Carolina stadium. The Gamecocks improve to 19-9 and 5-4 in the SEC while the loss drops the Bulldogs to 18-11 and 5-4 in the league.

Georgia took an early 2-0 lead in the top of the first. Stephen Wrenn knocked the first pitch he saw from Gamecock starter Clarke Schmidtto right field for a home run and a RBI single off the bat of Jared Walsh drove in Skyler Weber.

The Gamecocks cut the Bulldogs’ lead in half with a run in the bottom of the first. Gene Cone led off with a double to left field and advanced to third on a wild pitch. Jordan Gore brought Cone home with a sacrifice fly to center.

South Carolina tied the game at 2-2 plating a run in the bottom of the second. Alex Destino drew a leadoff walk and eventually scored onClark Scolamiero’s sacrifice fly to left field. Kyle Martin put the Gamecocks ahead 3-2 in the bottom of the third with a solo home run to right-center. The Gamecocks’ increased their lead to 4-2 in the fifth inning on a second sacrifice fly from Gore that scored Cone.

In the top of the sixth Georgia tied the game at 4-4 after a wild pitch from South Carolina reliever Vince Fiori scored Walsh and sacrifice fly from Mike Bell that scored Brandon Stephens.

The Gamecocks reclaimed the lead in the bottom of the six with a solo home run off the bat of Taylor.

South Carolina added three runs in the in the seventh to take an 8-4 lead over the Bulldogs. Max Schrock opened the frame with a walk and safely advanced to second on Kyle Martin’s fielder’s choice. A sacrifice bunt from Elliott Caldwell advanced both runners into scoring position before Patrick Harrington drew a walk to load the bases. Taylor followed with a sacrifice fly to bring home Schrock and a two-run double off the bat of Madison Stokes scored Martin and Harrington.

Georgia pushed across a run in the top of the ninth to cut the Gamecocks’ lead to 8-5 on a RBI double from Zack Bowers.

Freshman right-hander Brandon Murray earned the win in relief. He worked 1.1 perfect innings and struck out one batter. He is now 3-0 on the year. Junior left-hander Jack Wynkoop picked up his first career save after hurling 2.1 innings while allowing one run on three hits and striking out three batters. Connor Jones suffered the loss for the Bulldogs after allowing four runs on three hits and three walks and striking out one batter in 2.0 innings of relief.

Check out postgame reaction from Chad Holbrook and players here.


Clemson salvages final game against Wake Forest (VIDEO)

Zack Erwin led the Tigers to a win Sunday. (File Photo)

Zack Erwin led the Tigers to a win Sunday. (File Photo)

Zack Erwin pitched 8.0 strong innings to lead Clemson to a 6-2 win over Wake Forest at Doug Kingsmore Stadium on Sunday afternoon. The Tigers improved to 13-13 overall and 5-7 in the ACC. The Demon Deacons, who won the series 2-1, fell to 19-11 overall and 6-6 in ACC play.

Erwin (2-3) earned the victory by allowing seven hits, two runs (one earned) and one walk with seven strikeouts in 8.0 innings pitched. Wake Forest starter Connor Johnstone (1-2) suffered the loss.

Andrew Cox’s two-out single in the second inning scored Chase Pinder for the game’s first run, then the Tigers added two runs in the fourth inning on Weston Wilson’s run-scoring single and Cox’s sacrifice fly. Eli White blasted his first career homer, a three-run shot to left-center, in the sixth inning as well. All six Tiger RBIs came from the bottom three batters in the lineup.

The Tigers return to action Tuesday at 6:30 p.m. when they host Furman at Doug Kingsmore Stadium.

Check out postgame reaction from the Tigers here.


North Carolina sweeps the Carolinas All Star Basketball Classic (AUDIO)

Mack goes up for two of  his game high 27 points (Photo: The Mayor)

Mack goes up for two of his game high 27 points (Photo: The Mayor)

The North Carolina teams proved superior Saturday at Socastee High School winning both ends of the Carolinas All Star Basketball Classic.  The boys won by a 106-93 score and the girls came away with a 66-60 victory.

In the boys game, NC had seven players to score in double figures and hit a dozen three pointers.  NC led by ten at the half but SC chipped away at the lead in the second half and trailed just 70-69 with just over 12 minutes to play.

But SC could never come up with the defensive stop to be able to take the lead.  NC responded with a 10-1 run and eventually built a 16 point lead in the final minutes.

Dreher’s Tevin Mack was the MVP for SC with a game high 27 points on 10-22 shooting.  The VCU signee tied the game record with four three pointers.

Chesnee’s Deion Holmes, the state’s second all time leading scorer who averaged 40 points per game this season, took only eight shots and had 12 points.

Spring Valley’s Malik Dunbar, who won the slam dunk contest Friday night, finished with 18 points and a tean high 10 rebounds.

NC MVP Kentrell Barkley of Durham had 18 points, 5 assists and 3 steals.

The win is the second straight for NC in the series and gives it a 12-6 overall lead in the competition.

AUDIO: SC coach Greg Elliott [2:14]

Box Score

In the girls’ game, NC took a 66-60 win despite shooting 29.6% from the floor.  SC wasn’t much better making just 30.6% of its shots.  NC managed two more three pointers and made six more free throws.  SC committed 26 turnovers which NC turned into 26 points.

NC led by six at halftime and never trailed in the second half leading by as much as 14 points.  SC got as close as four at 59-55 with 4:29 to play but could get no closer as NC hit layups and free throws down the stretch.

Dejoria Howard of Orangeburg-Wilkinson earned MVP honors for SC with 16 points and 4 rebounds.  Grace Hunter of Raleigh was the NC MVP with 14 points and 7 rebounds.

The NC Girls have won three straight in the series and lead it 11-7.

Box Score



Georgia takes series from USC with 4-3 victory Saturday night (VIDEO)

Martin's 9th inning homer made it close (File Photo)

Martin’s 9th inning homer made it close (File Photo)

Georgia raced out to a 4-0 lead in the first two innings and despite a two-run homer by Kyle Martin and a late Gamecock rally the Bulldogs defeated seventh ranked South Carolina 4-3 on Saturday afternoon. Georgia is now 18-10 and 5-3 in the SEC with the Gamecocks dropping to 18-9 and 4-4 in league play.

Georgia would take advantage of a Gamecock error to go ahead 2-0 in the top of the first inning. Skylar Weber reached base on a one-out throwing error and Zack Bowers was hit by a pitch to give the Bulldogs a pair of runners. Jared Walsh would drive in Weber with a RBI single and Trevor Kieboom added a two-out RBI base hit. The Bulldogs increased their lead to 4-0 in the top of the second inning. Weber drove in a run with a RBI single and Bowers set down a successful safety squeeze.

The Gamecocks cut the Bulldogs lead to three runs in the fourth inning. Jordan Gore singled with one out, advanced to second on a passed ball and reached third on a wild pitch. DC Arendas would draw a one-out walk to give the Gamecocks runners on the corners. With two outs, Gene Cone would belt a RBI single into right field scoring Gore.

It would remain that way until the ninth inning when Gene Cone led off the ninth with a walk. With one out and Cone on first base, Martin launched his team-leading fifth homer over the right field wall to cut the deficit to one run. Down to the last out, the Gamecocks kept fighting as Alex Destinosingled and pinch runner Clark Scolamiero stole second to get into scoring position. Georgia reliever Sean McLaughlin was able to get out of the jam on a groundout to short off the bat of Logan Koch to end the game.

McLaughlin earned the win after 4.1 innings of relief allowing two runs on four hits with two walks and five strikeouts. Gamecock starter Reed Scott suffered the loss and is 0-1 on the season. Scott allowed four runs, two earned, on seven hits in seven innings with six strikeouts and three walks. Right-hander Preston Johnson recorded six outs with six strikeouts in two scoreless innings of relief for the Gamecocks.

Gene Cone went 3-for-4, Kyle Martin went 2-for-4 and Jordan Gore was 2-for-3 to lead the Gamecocks at the plate.

Box Score

Jack Wynkoop & DC Arendas post game

#STRecruiting: Long time USC lean DE Javon Kinlaw holds off on commitment

Javon Kinlaw

Javon Kinlaw

Goose Creek DE Javon Kinlaw (6-7 265) has had USC at the top of his list since the Gamecocks were the first to offer him in August 2014.  And he went to the  Gamecocks’ junior day Saturday thinking he might be ready to commit.  But that didn’t happen Saturday and Kinlaw say no commitment is coming from him anytime soon.

“I’m putting things on hold for awhile,” said Kinlaw who added that he didn’t get the feeling from the Gamecocks they were ready to accept a commitment from him.

“Everything was nice talking about the brand new facilities and stuff like that.  I just love it up there.  It’s great.  I just feel like I’m not ready yet.  I’m gong to weigh all my options.”

Kinlaw met with his recruiter Steve Spurrier Jr. and defensive line coach Deke Adams but did not talk with Steve Spurrier, Jon Hoke or Lorenzo Ward.

Despite not making a pledge Saturday, Kinlaw said he’s still favoring the Gamecocks strongly over the rest of the field.  He also has offers from Clemson, Alabama, Florida, Louisville, East Carolina, Florida State and Auburn. Clemson, Florida and Florida State are three others that have stood out to Kinlaw.