Top-ranked South Carolina avoided a three-game sweep Sunday, taking the series finale at Cliff Hagan…
South Carolina beats Kentucky, 8-3
Arendas' solo homer was a solo shot in the fifth inning with Pankake belting a three-run blast to give the Gamecocks some insurance runs in the ninth inning. Pankake has a 10-game hitting streak as he went 2-for-5 with two runs scored. Connor Bright added two hits, a RBI and two run scored with Arendas also scoring two runs.
Crowe did not allow a hit until the fifth inning. He finished allowing three runs on four hits with a pair of walks and two strikeouts. Junior right-hander Joel Seddon picked up his seventh save with 2.1 perfect innings and four strikeouts. Kentucky starting pitcher Andrew Nelson suffered the loss and is 1-1 on the year. He worked 5.1 innings and allowed five runs, four earned, on five hits with a pair of walks and five strikeouts.
"It was a big game for us and a big win," said South Carolina head coach Chad Holbrook. "It was important to try and get a game up here. We played well, played good defense, Wil got us off to a good start and we got a couple big swings of the bat. We try to pride ourselves on winning on Sunday. If we are going to have a great year, you have to win on Sunday. We'll take it, get on the bus, regroup and try to play a little bit better next week."
South Carolina manufactured a run in the top of the second inning to take the early lead, a lead they would never relinquish. Bright led off with a single and Taylor Widener walked to give the Gamecocks a pair of runners with no outs. After a sacrifice bunt by Arendas moved both runners over, Tanner English lifted a sac fly to left-center scoring Bright and giving the Gamecocks a 1-0 lead.
Arendas' third homer of the year increased South Carolina's lead to 2-0 in the fifth inning. Leading off the frame, Arendas launched a 2-0 pitch to right-center for the Gamecocks' first homer of the series. Kentucky answered with a run in the bottom half to cut the Gamecock lead back to a run. Ka'ai Tom reached base on a two-out infield single, the first hit by UK in the game. He would then score on Storm Wilson's RBI double to the gap in left-center.
Carolina responded in the top of the 6th with three more runs to go ahead 5-1. Pankake led off with a single to extend his hitting streak to 10 games and Kyle Martin followed with a base hit. With one out and the runners still on first and second base, Connor Bright knocked a base hit into right-center scoring Pankake. UK right fielder Kyle Barrett threw towards third in attempt to get Martin and allowed Bright to advance to second base. Taylor Widener would then hit a hard chopper to second base that UK's JaVon Shelby could not handle allowing both Martin and Bright to score. Kentucky would get a run back in the bottom of the 6th. JaVon Shelby reached base on a hit by pitch, advanced to second on a passed ball and scored on Kyle Barrett's RBI single to left-center.
Kentucky crept to within two in the seventh inning as pinch hitter Marcus Carson tallied a two-out RBI single. With runners on first and second and two outs, Seddon entered and struck out Kyle Barrett to keep the Gamecocks ahead 5-3.
It would remain that way until the ninth inning. Arendas was hit by a pitch and pinch hitter Elliott Caldwell drew a two-out walk setting the stage for Pankake. On a full count pitch, Pankake launched a deep blast to left-center to give the Gamecocks a five-run advantage.
"I got that one pretty good," said Pankake. "It felt really good and it felt even better to get three more runs and give a little cushion going into the bottom of the 9th."
South Carolina returns home to begin a six-game homestand on Tuesday vs. College of Charleston. First pitch is 7 p.m. with the game available on the Gamecock IMG Network including flagship station, 107.5 FM, "The Game."
GamecockPride.com Recommended Stories
Dr. Roto Video: Week 12 Key Matchups
Dr. Roto highlights each and every game upcoming for Week 12 and a Fantasy matchup to monitor within. Cleveland Browns WR Josh Gordon (pictured above) makes his return against the less-than-stellar…Read More
The 10 Biggest Anti-Knife Cities In The U.S.
If you're a hunter or an outdoorsman like us, chances are you carry some sort of pocket knife or multi-tool with a blade at all times. If you visit some of these cities your every-day tool could put…Read More
OU's Perine rushes into record books
Norman has seen a lot of special days, but few will compare to what Samaje Perine did Saturday in rushing for 427 yards and five touchdowns.Read More
6 Biggest Man-to-Man Rivalries in Sports
From Pierce and Lebron to Peyton and Tom to Ali and Frazier, we're celebrating love/hate on and off the field of play.Read More
Apache Administers Death to Taliban (VIDEO)
The Apache helicopter is one of the most famed and efficient killing machines in the U.S Army. Get the skinny on this 'steel dragon' and watch what one does to a platoon of Taliban fighters in…Read More