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May 1, 2004

Box Score

Columbia, S.C. – Ninth ranked Mississippi backed Steven Head’s four hit complete game with a 15 hit attack, two of them including a home run by Head himself, to defeat seventh ranked South Carolina 6-1 and even a Southeastern Conference baseball series at one game apiece. The rubber game is scheduled for 12 noon EDT Sunday at Sarge Frye Field. The starting time was moved to 12 noon to accommodate Mississippi’s travel schedule.

Freshman left-hander Arik Hempy, 2-1, who earned a save in South Carolina’s 7-3 Friday night win, will start for the Gamecocks. Sophomore left-hander Matt Maloney, 1-1, is the scheduled starter for Mississippi.

A left-handed sophomore who was last year’s National Freshman of the Year, Head pitched his second complete game of the season to improve his record to 6-1. The losing pitcher was Head’s USA National Team teammate of last summer, junior left-hander Matt Campbell, who fell to 6-3. In his previous start, last Sunday against Alabama, Campbell pitched a 10 inning 1-0 shutout. Against Mississippi he was reached for 11 hits and six earned runs in seven plus innings.

Mississippi improved its overall record to 33-13, 12-8 in the Southeastern Conference. South Carolina fell to 32-12 overall and evened its SEC record at 10-10. Head struck out eight and walked four.

Head, batting cleanup as the designated hitter in addition to being the starting pitcher, hit his 11th home run of the season in the second inning for the first Rebel run. He was hit by a pitch and scored in the sixth and singled in the ninth inning for a two for four day at the plate.

South Carolina tied the score at 1-1 in the bottom of the second. Steve Pearce doubled and scored on a single by Hank Parks. The only Gamecock hit after that was an infield single in the seventh inning by Steven Tolleson. Head struck out eight and walked four. Two walks and an error loaded the bases with one out for South Carolina in the sixth inning but Head pitched out of that jam.

Four consecutive singles leading off the top of the fifth inning broke the 1-1 tie and produced three runs. Mississippi added single runs in the sixth and eighth inning.

The bottom four hitters in the Mississippi batting order combined for 10 of the 15 Rebel hits, scored four runs and drove in three.. Brian Pettway and Barry Gunther were three for four, Chris Coghlan was two for five, and Mark Wright was two for three. Coghlan and Gunther had doubles. Cooper Osteen and Head had two hits and the other Mississippi hit was by Matt Tolbert.

Campbell struck out seven, increasing his season total to 88 in 73 innings, and walked only one but he was guilty of two wild pitches and hit a batter, Head, in addition to allowing 11 hits. Cliff Donald gave up four hits and a walk in one plus inning of work but two of three double plays by the South Carolina defense kept him from being charged with any runs. Harris Honeycutt pitched a hitless inning.