COLUMBIA, SC - The University of South Carolina baseball team bounced back with three home runs, two off the bat of Madison Stokes and solid pitching from Cody Morris in a 7-2 win over VMI Saturday afternoon (Feb. 17) at Founders Park.
The Gamecocks were hot at the start, with eight of the first nine batters reaching base. Singles from TJ Hopkins, Jonah Bride, Madison Stokes, and Jacob Olson helped score Noah Campbell, Hopkins, and Carlos Cortes, putting the Gamecocks up 3-0 in the first.
Stokes continued to dominate at the plate in the third as he sent one flying out of the park for his first home run of the season, increasing the Gamecock lead to 4-0.
A single from VMI catcher Peyton Maddox scored Nathan Eaton, cutting the Carolina lead to 4-1 in the top of the fourth.
The ball continued to fly in the bottom of the fourth as Hunter Taylor hit one soaring in the gap in left for his first home run of the year, stretching the Gamecock lead to 5-1.
The bottom of the fifth brought another home run for Stokes, a mammoth shot that gave him his first multi-home run game of his career.
VMI answered in the sixth with a solo homer by Eaton, making the score 6-2. Logan Chapman came in to replace Morris after two outs, striking out Payton Maddox to end the Keydet threat.
The Gamecocks followed suit in their half of the sixth inning when a single from Cortes that brought Hopkins home, making the score 7-2 Carolina.
Sawyer Bridges entered the game as for the Gamecocks with one out in the top of the eighth. He struck out a pair in 1.2 innings of work.