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May 19, 2003

Birmingham, Ala. – South Carolina junior LHP David Marchbanks was tabbed 2003 Southeastern Conference Pitcher of the Year by a vote of the league’s 12 head baseball coaches and is one of three South Carolina players to earn first team All-SEC honors. Marchbanks, senior 3B Brian Buscher and junior C Landon Powell each earned all-conference honors for the first time in the SEC.

Among the nation’s leaders in wins, Marchbanks has a 12-2 record with a 2.40 ERA and leads the SEC in wins (12), innings pitched (108 2/3) and strikeouts looking (32). The junior from Simpsonville, S.C. owns 79 strikeouts on the year and has allowed just 17 walks. In his three-year career at Carolina, Marchbanks has accumulated a 28-7 record and is currently eighth on the All-Time Gamecock Wins List.

Buscher, one of three captains on this year’s squad, continues to lead the SEC in hitting with a .391 batting average and is among the SEC leaders in home runs (12) and RBI (56). The senior from Jacksonville, Fla. owns an 11-game hitting streak heading into the SEC Tournament. Buscher also had a 14-game hitting streak early in the season and leads the team with 28 multi-hit games in 56 played this year.

A preseason All-American and captain, Powell is the top defensive catcher in the SEC with a .995 fielding percentage owning just two errors on the year. Powell became the fourth South Carolina player to hit two home runs in a game this season and the third to hit a grand slam in Carolina’s 14-2 win over Georgia on May 17. Powell leads the SEC in walks (39) and is among the league leaders in doubles (19). Powell is one of 32 players on the 2003 Johnny Bench Award Watch list. The award goes each year to the top collegiate catcher in the nation.

Marchbanks is the second Carolina pitcher win SEC Pitcher of the Year. Kip Bouknight earned the award in the 2000 season, a year in which Bouknight finished with a 17-1 record and was the Golden Spikes National Player of the Year. South Carolina also had the SEC Player of the Year last year when Yaron Peters was named the top conference player.

South Carolina opens up play in the SEC Tournament on Wednesday afternoon at approximately 2 p.m. ET vs. Alabama. The Gamecocks head into the tournament with a 38-18 record and ranked as high as 14th in the nation.

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