HOOVER, AL - The University of South Carolina baseball team scored five runs in the sixth inning, but Arkansas built a lead that was too large to overcome as the Gamecocks fell to the Razorbacks, 13-8, Wednesday night (May 23) at Hoover Met Stadium. South Carolina goes into the loser's bracket and will face LSU Thursday afternoon at approximately 2 p.m. Eastern time.
Logan Chapman struck out the first two batters of the game but walked Heston Kjerstad and Luke Bonfield. Dominic Fletcher then hit a three-run home run to right center to give the Razorbacks the early 3-0 lead. Arkansas added three more runs in the second on RBI's from Eric Cole, Kjerstad and Bonfield.
Carolina scored its first run of the game in the third. Jacob Olson singled and moved to second on a throwing error to lead off the inning. He went to third on a wild pitch and scored as Matt Williams reached on the second throwing error of the inning. Arkansas answered with a pair of runs in the bottom of the third. An infield single from Jack Kenley brought in a run. Carson Shaddy's sacrifice fly scored Jared Gates to build an 8-1 lead.
Arkansas added two runs on a Casey Martin home run, but the Gamecocks clawed back with a five-spot in the sixth. Kyle Jacobsen walked with one out and went to second on Madison Stokes' infield single. Mason Streater loaded the bases as he reached on an error. Danny Blair forced in a run with a walk and LT Tolbertquickly unloaded the bases with a grand slam. Arkansas got one run back in the bottom of the sixth on Martin's second home run of the game.
Fletcher extended Arkansas' lead to 13-6 in the eighth with a two-run single. Carolina made it interesting in the ninth. Noah Campbell led off with an infield single. He went to third as Jacobsen singled which was combined with a throwing error. Stokes doubled to left to score Campbell. Tolbert brought in Jacobsen with a single to left, but a double play ended the contest.
Tolbert was 4-for-5 with five RBI in the contest. Olson added a pair of hits. Chapman took the loss. He allowed three hits and six runs in 1.1 innings pitched.
The Gamecocks allowed three runs in the first inning off of just one hit, a three-run home run from Dominic Fletcher.
Tolbert leads the Gamecocks with 49 RBI after his five RBI night.
For the second straight day, rain pushed the schedule back at the SEC Tournament. South Carolina's game did not start until 9:45 p.m. Central time.
Tolbert connected on his sixth home run of the season and the first grand slam of the year. It was Carolina's second grand slam of 2018. Hunter Taylor did the trick against Winthrop on Feb. 21.
Tolbert also drove in a career high five runs in the Arkansas contest. His previous career high was four in the same Winthrop game on Feb. 21.
Parker Coyne pitched for the first time since May 9 and struck out six in 2.2 innings pitched.
Carolina is now 3-4 all-time against Arkansas in the SEC Tournament.