A Brady Thomas RBI single that knocked past Kentucky second baseman J.T. Riddle scored Adrian Morales as third ranked South Carolina defeated Kentucky 4-3 in 10 innings on Saturday afternoon at Carolina Stadium. This afternoon’s attendance was 8,242, the fourth sellout of the year. The Gamecocks are 21-5 and 6-2 in the SEC while the loss drops Kentucky to 15-13 and 2-6 in league play. Carolina goes for the sweep on Sunday afternoon with first pitch at 1:30 p.m.
Carolina trailed 3-2 before tying the game in the eighth inning. With one out, Jackie Bradley Jr. was hit by a pitch by Kentucky reliever Mike Kaczmarek. With the UK reliever still in the game Christian Walker doubled down the left field line to put a pair of runners in scoring position. After a walk to Adrian Morales loaded the bases, Carolina tied it at 3-3 on Jake Williams’ RBI single to center field.
With the score still deadlocked at 3-3 and in the 10th inning, Morales reached base for the fifth time of the game as he knocked the ball in the air between the center fielder and second base. The ball dropped between both of them allowing Morales to reach second with his third double of the game, tying a single-game school record. After an intentional walk to Jake Williams, Morales showed his versatility as he stole third base to give the Gamecocks runners on the corners. With the count full, Thomas squared up a fastball from UK reliever Trevor Gott and the hard hit grounder got past Riddle into the outfield and Morales scored to lift Carolina to the victory.
Carolina reliever Matt Price earned the win and is now 3-2 on the year. He worked two perfect innings of relief with two strikeouts. Kentucky reliever Trevor Gott suffered the loss and is now 1-3 on the year. He allowed one run on four hits in two innings with two strikeouts and two walks.
Morales’ 3-for-3 day at the plate with three doubles led Carolina. He is the 24th player in school history to have three doubles in a game; the last was Christian Walker on May, 2010 at Kentucky. He also scored two runs. Thomas went 3-for-5 with a pair of RBI and Walker was 2-for-5 to lead Carolina at the plate. The Gamecocks had 11 hits on the afternoon. Lucas Witt, Chad Wright and Braden Kapteyn all had two hits apiece to lead Kentucky.
Carolina broke ahead 2-0 in the bottom of the second inning. Adrian Morales led off with a double down the right field line and scored on Brady Thomas’ one-out RBI single up the middle. With two outs and Robert Beary on second base, Evan Marzilli delivered his own RBI single up the middle to give the Gamecocks a two-run cushion.
Kentucky struck right back though and scored a pair in the top of the third inning to tie the game at 2-2. Lucas Witt doubled with one out over the head of Gamecock left fielder Robert Beary and scored on Chad Wright’s RBI single to right field. After a balk advanced Wright to second base, Kentucky would tie the game on Braden Kapteyn’s two-out RBI single to left field. They would take the lead at 3-2 in the seventh inning as Witt drove in Riddle with a two-out RBI single.