From staff reports/File photo by Allen Sharpe
Jordan Holladay and Brett Kerry came up huge in crucial situations for South Carolina Saturday to lead the Gamecocks to a 3-2 win over Tennessee to even the SEC series in Knoxville.
A nght after getting pounded by the Volunteers 15-5, South Carolina trailed 2-0 when it rallied in the seventh inning. TJ Hopkins led off the inning with a single and Jacob Olson was hit by a pitch. After a double steal put runners at second and third, Chris Cullen delivered a two-run double to right field to tie the game. Holladay then followed with a pinch-hit double to drive in the go-ahead run.
Cam Tringali, who threw 1.2 scoreless innings, retired Tennessee in the bottom of the seventh and then handed the ball off to Kerry, who notched an adventurous save.
Kerry walked the first two Tennessee batters in the eighth and the Vols loaded the bases on a bunt single. Kerry then struck out the side to get the Gamecocks out of the inning. Tennessee got a leadoff double in the ninth and added another baserunner on a walk, but Kerry got a strikeout, a flyout and another strikeout to end the game. He struck out five batters in two innings to collect his third save of the season.
Starter Reid Morgan pitched well again, allowing only two runs in 5.1 innings.
Olson started the game in right field after Andew Eyster suffered a knee injury Friday night during a collision with Hopkins in the outfield. Quinntin Perez started at third and played there until Olson moved from right back to third late in the game.
The Gamecocks improved to 16-7 and 1-4 in the SEC. Game 2 in Knoville is at 2 p.m. Sunday. TJ Shook will get the start for the Gamecocks.