The University of South Carolina baseball team scored three runs in the bottom of the seventh inning to turn a 2-1 deficit into a 4-2 win over Missouri Tuesday night (May 22) on the opening day of the 2018 SEC Baseball Tournament at Hoover Met Stadium. The Gamecocks now move into the double elimination tournament, beginning Wednesday night (May 23) against Arkansas at 9 p.m. EDT.
In a game that did not start until 10:31 p.m. Central time, the Tigers scored all their runs in one inning. Connor Brumfield led off the fourth with a single. He moved to second on a single by Trey Harris. Both runners moved up on a wild pitch and a groundout by Brian Sharp plated the game’s first run. Chad McDaniel then singled to left center, scoring Harris as Missouri built a 2-0 lead.
Carolina plated a run in the fifth. LT Tolbert led off with a double down the line in right. He went to third on a single by Hunter Taylor. Jacob Olson drove in Tolbert with a double to the gap in right. The Gamecocks loaded the bases in that inning, but a fly out ended the threat.
The Gamecocks trailed until the seventh, when Carolina scored three runs off three hits. Taylor singled back up the middle to start the frame. He went to second as Olson walked. Noah Campbell loaded the bases with a single to right. Carlos Cortes then walked to force in Taylor. Madison Stokes’ sacrifice fly gave Carolina the 3-2 lead and Jonah Bride added insurance with an RBI single to left.
The win on the mound went to Eddy Demurias, who is now 6-0 on the season. He struck out a batter in 1.2 innings pitched. Graham Lawson picked up his second save, striking out three Tigers. Carmen Mlodzinskigave the Gamecocks a solid start, striking out five and allowing three hits and two runs in five innings pitched.
Campbell, Tolbert and Taylor had two hits apiece for Carolina.
The Gamecocks scored three runs in the bottom of the seventh as Cortes, Stokes and Bride each drove in a run.
Carolina wins its 29th SEC Tournament game in program history and advances to the double elimination tournament.
The 10:31 p.m. start time was the second latest time a game has started in the SEC Tournament. Alabama and Kentucky started at 10:45 p.m. CT in 2008.
Carolina earned its fifth win of the season when trailing after six innings.
Carolina won in the single-elimination portion of the tournament for the second straight year. The Gamecocks beat Vanderbilt, 7-4, in last year’s tournament.
Carolina did not make an error in a game for the 28th time this season.
South Carolina, the fifth seed in the tournament, will face fourth-seeded Arkansas Wednesday night (May 23) at approximately 9 p.m. EDT (8 p.m. CDT).