COLUMBIA, SC - The University of South Carolina baseball team used a sacrifice fly from TJ Hopkins in the bottom of the ninth to walk off Clemson, 3-2, Friday night (March 2) at Founders Park.
Adam Hill and Jacob Hennessy traded zeroes on the scoreboard until the bottom of the fifth as an error by Clemson second baseman Grayson Byrd brought home Jonah Bride for the first run of the game, giving the Gamecocks the 1-0 lead.
Clemson responded with a two-run homer by Seth Beer, the Tigers' first hit of the game, making the score 2-1 Clemson in the top of the sixth.
Matt Williams entered the game in the bottom of the eighth as a pinch hitter and hit a huge home run to tie the game 2-2.
In the bottom of the ninth, Bride led off the inning with a walk. He went to third on a failed pickoff attempt, leading to Hopkins' heroics.
Hill had another great Friday night with 14 strikeouts in seven innings, his second straight 14-strikeouts performance. Eddy Demurias is credited with the win for the Gamecocks, his first of the season. He struck out a pair in 1.2 innings of relief.
"A great college baseball game, great environment, great everything tonight. I'll start with complementing our starting pitcher Adam Hill, who again was tremendous. Seven innings, fourteen strikeouts and two hits. He's developing into one of the top pitchers in the country. Both teams played well, we were just able to find a way to score one more run tonight. We had some guys really step up. Eddy Demurias was outstanding tonight and [Matt] Williams with the big home run obviously. You just never know who is going to step up in these games so to see guys that you don't expect, I just think that shows why this is such a great team game."- Head Coach Mark Kingston
Matt Williams led off the eighth inning with a solo home run into the right field bullpen, tying the game at two.
In Adam Hill's last two games, the Anderson, S.C., native has struck out 28 batters and allowed just one hit in 14 innings of work.
Adam Hill tied his career-high and Founders Park record with 14 strikeouts.
Matt Williams belted his fourth career home run in the win. He hit .417 with a pair of runs scored in last year's series vs. the Tigers.
LT Tolbert now has a hit in each of the last 10 games.
The sell out crowd of 8,242 was the first of the season at Founders Park.
South Carolina has now won the opening game of the series each of the last three seasons.