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April 4, 2003

Box Score

Baton Rouge, La. – Freshman RHP Justin Meier threw his first career complete game and Ryan Patterson and Clay Harris each hit home runs as LSU defeated South Carolina 5-1 in the first of a three-game Southeastern Conference baseball series. The win improves LSU to 20-9-1 and 8-1-1 in the SEC while the loss drops South Carolina to 19-11 and 4-6 in the SEC.

Meier allowed 10 hits but struck out eight batters and walked none improving to 4-0 on the year. South Carolina starter Steven Bondurant went seven innings and allowed four runs on seven hits while striking two batters and walking three. Bondurant is now 3-2 on the season.

LSU jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the bottom half of the second inning. After a one-out walk to Clay Harris, designated hitter Ryan Patterson knocked a 1-0 pitch to left field for his seventh home run of the season. The Tigers increased their lead to three runs in the third inning. Back to back doubles by Bruce Sprowl and J.C. Holt gave LSU a 3-0 lead.

Carolina had an opportunity to score in the fourth inning. With one out, Powell, Bryan Triplett and Trey McDaniel each singled to load the bases on Meier. With a 2-2 count, Justin Harris knocked a sharp hit ball to shortstop that turned into a 6-4-3 double play, with a tight play at first base on the throw from LSU second baseman Blake Gill.

The Gamecocks cut the deficit to 3-1 in the top of the seventh inning. Triplett, McDaniel and Justin Harris each singled to load the bases for Carolina with no outs. Triplett scored the Gamecocks first run as Michael Campbell grounded into a 4-6-3 double play. LSU scored one run in the bottom half of the seventh inning and eighth inning to jump ahead 5-1 in the game. Clay Harris hit his sixth home run of the year in the bottom half of the eighth for the Tigers.

South Carolina outhit the Tigers 10-8 despite the outcome marking the fourth consecutive loss by Carolina in the SEC in which the Gamecocks have outhit an opponent. Seven of nine USC starters had at least one hit with Powell, Triplett and McDaniel each with two hits in the game. Sprowl and Zeringue each had two to pace the Tigers.

Game two of the series is scheduled for 4 p.m. ET on Saturday and will be broadcast on SEC-TV and Fox Sports South. Junior LHP David Marchbanks will start for Carolina with senior RHP Bo Petit taking the mound for the Tigers.