Founders Park: In their first outing since their most difficult loss of the season last Friday against top-ranked LSU, #3 USC built an early 5-0 lead over Upstate and went on to a 7-2 victory Tuesday night at Founders Park. The Gamecocks improved to 29-4 and will open a three-game series at 4th ranked Vanderbilt Friday night.
The Gamecocks, who lead the nation with 78 home runs, had back to back shots from Dylan Brewer and Ethan Petry in the bottom of the first for a 2-0 lead. For Brewer it was his 5th home run of the season, and for Petry it was #16. Petry had three hits on the night and is now batting .449 with 52 RBIs.
The Gamecocks extended their lead to 5-0 in the third on an RBI single by Cole Messina and a pair of bases-loaded walks. USC picked up their last two runs in the fifth also on bases loaded walks. Eight Upstate pitchers issued 9 walks.
Matthew Becker was the first of eight USC pitchers and earned the win to improve to 3-0. They combined on a four-hitter with 13 strikeouts and 3 walks. Only one of the Spartans’ two runs was earned, that on a homer by Ty Tilson. The Gamecocks committed 3 errors matching their season high.
Upstate is now 22-12 and will open a Big South Conference series at UNC-Asheville Friday.