USC didn’t leave any doubt about who was in control of this NCAA Regional Saturday night. Liberty shook things up with an upset over Clemson Friday, but the Gamecocks dismantled them 19-3 in front of a sold out crowd at Carolina Stadium. USC is one win away from advancing to a Super Regional for a fourth straight year.
Here are a few of the many scoring highlights:
USC scored three unearned runs in the first inning and started piling on from there. All three of those first inning runs were unearned and all three game courtesy of bases loaded walks by Liberty starter Brooks Roy, who didn’t make it out of that inning.
A four run 3rd inning courtesy of a two run RBI single by Connor Bright and a two run homerun from Tanner English. The homer was the first of English’s career. He finished with three hits. Max Schrock hit a two run homer in the 5th inning to extend the lead to 9-0. The Gamecocks scored nine times in the 8th inning with some shoddy Liberty defense and a three-run homer by Kyle Martin serving as the catalyst.
Liberty finally got on the board in the bottom of the ninth with a three-run homer that was far too little and far too late.
The way USC starter Jordan Montgomery was pitching the Gamecocks didn’t need anywhere close to to 19 runs. The sophomore lefty was brilliant in seven innings of work. He allowed just three hits, didn’t walk a batter and struck out a career high 11.
Clemson and Liberty will play at 1:00 Sunday with the winner earning a date with the Gamecocks at 7:00. Whoever wins between the Tigers and Flames will have to beat USC twice to advance.