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Sept. 15, 2005

Former Gamecock All-American Darlene Lee Lowery, 41, died last week on Sept. 8 in her Largo, Fla. home. Results from an autopsy are still pending, but she is suspected to have suffered a heart attack. A pitcher, Lowery lettered for the Gamecocks in 1983, 84-87 and led USC to a third-place finish at the 1983 World Series.

A two-time all-america selection in 1983 and 1985, Lowery was the first Gamecock to pitch a no-hitter and a perfect game. She holds the school record for most no-hitters with nine, and her perfect game came in 1987 against East Carolina. She is USC’s third all-time strikeout leader with 874 and still holds the lowest earned run average with a 0.38 mark. Lowery finished her career with a 70-19 record.

Considered by many to be one of the best pitchers in the history of Gamecock softball, Lowery was a silver medal winner in the 1983 Pan Am Games. With her accomplishments, she helped establish South Carolina as a nationally renowned softball program. Most recently, Lowery served as a professional softball instructor, where she helped many local female athletes reach their goals of playing collegiate softball.

“Darlene was always a fierce competitor and after college, she continued to give back to the game of softball throughout her life,” said head coach Joyce Compton. “She helped create a tradition of excellence for Carolina softball and helped put the Gamecocks on the softball map.”