Skip to main content
Partner logo
Mobile Icon Link Mobile Icon Link Mobile Icon Link Gamecocks+

June 22, 2004

Omaha, Neb. –

For the second game in a row, South Carolina’s baseball team scored 15 runs and stayed alive in the 2004 NCAA College World Series, by defeating #3 seed Miami (Fla.) 15-11 Tuesday evening at Rosenblatt Stadium in Omaha, Neb.

South Carolina used three home runs to post the victory. Brendan Winn, USC’s starting right fielder, connected on his first home run since May 19. Said Winn: “It felt good getting some hits and driving in some runs. I felt comfortable at the plate and the ball might have looked a little bigger tonight.” Winn tied a CWS single game record by scoring five runs on the night.

Junior right hander Billy Buckner picked up the win, striking out 10 and giving up four earned runs through seven innings. Buckner was also the subject of a feature story on ESPN’s Sports Center earlier in the evening.

After the game, head coach Ray Tanner was encouraged by what he saw from his team. “We knew we had to get some runs early, because Miami has such an explosive offensive team,” said Coach Tanner. “We were aggressive at the plate and Billy Buckner gave us a quality start. It didn’t surprise me that Miami rallied like they did (scoring five runs in the ninth). Fortunately, we had a cushion and were able to get the W.”

The day started early once again for Coach Tanner and pitching coach Jerry Meyers. They met at 8:30 a.m. with the announce team from ESPN (Sean McDonough, Harold Reynolds, and Dave Ryan). They discussed everything from the strategy of the game to philosophy on when players should opt to pursue pro ball or return for their final season of college ball.

Perhaps one of the highlights of the day came in the morning at the hotel lobby, when six-year-old Charlie Peters visited his favorite baseball team – the South Carolina Gamecocks. Last year, USC visited a local children’s hospital and met Charlie, who at the time was undergoing chemo-treatments at the hospital. Charlie became an instant fan of the team and sent the ball club a poster and some photos. In turn, the team sent Charlie and his siblings some Gamecock t-shirts and ball caps. Charlie was extremely ill shortly after last year’s CWS and almost didn’t make it. Tuesday morning, he was seen hanging out with members of the Gamecock team. Charlie and his mother, Jennifer, brought over a poster to present to the team. The message said: “I’ve won my battle …now you go win yours.” The players were elated to see Charlie. Landon Powell and Kevin Melillo spent extra time with Charlie and his mother. A local TV station in Omaha came by and did a feature story on the reunion. Charlie is indeed a special young boy. The Gamecocks wish him only the best!

* After the game, members of the team, their families and friends, stopped by the hotel restaurant to get a bite to eat. There was a buzz in the air. Consecutive 15 run outbursts against teams the caliber of LSU and Miami were impressive. Now, it was time to focus the attention to Cal-State Fullerton, who shut out the Gamecocks 2-0 last Saturday. Coach Tanner said he was leaning towards starting right hander Jason Fletcher against the Titans on Wednesday. Start time is 7 p.m. (eastern time) with ESPN2 televising nationwide.