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April 16, 2006

Box Score

Columbia, S.C. – Mark Wright drove in seven runs Sunday with a three run home run and a pair of doubles and Ole Miss salvaged the final game of a Southeastern Conference baseball series with an 11-6 win over South Carolina.

South Carolina won the series two games to one and continues to lead the Eastern Division and the overall SEC race with an 11-4 conference record. South Carolina is 29-8 overall. Ole Miss improved its record to 21-15, 7-8. All four of South Carolina’s SEC losses have occurred on Sunday, a rain delayed doubleheader with Alabama, the final game of a series at Auburn and the loss to Mississippi.

Freshman right-hander Lance Lynn, 4-2, pitched the first six innings for Ole Miss and benefited from a four run top of the seventh to receive credit for the win. Will Kline pitched the final three innings to earn his first save. Chase Tucker, 0-1, the second of five South Carolina pitchers, was charged with the loss.

South Carolina led 4-3 after six innings, mainly on the strength of a three run third inning home run by catcher Trent Kline. However, Ole Miss struck for four in the seventh on four hits, the big blow a three run homer by Wright. It was the eighth homer of the year for the Rebel right fielder.

Wright also drove in a third inning run with a double and doubled again with the bases loaded in the four run eighth inning to drive in three more. He had three hits in the game, all for extra bases. Third baseman Chris Coughlin had a four hit day, all singles, for Ole Miss. He scored four runs and drove in one. Zack Cozart and Alex Presley each had two hits in Ole Miss’ 14 hit attack.

South Carolina had 10 hits, three each by Michael Campbell and Trent Kline. Campbell had a double and his third homer, scored twice and drove in two. Kline had two singles to go with his three run homer, his fourth of the season. Andrew Crisp had two hits, including a double, for the Gamecocks.

South Carolina committed its first error in 14 games when freshman second baseman James Darnell misplayed a ground ball when Mississippi scored twice in the third inning to take a 3-1 lead. The Gamecocks had handled 507 consecutive defensive chances, 370 putouts and 137 assists before committing their 17th error in 37 games. The errorless span covered 123 1/3 innings.

After Mississippi scored in the top of the first inning on two hits and a walk, South Carolina tied it in the bottom of the first but missed a chance to take charge of the game. The Gamecocks had a run in and the bases loaded with no outs but Justin Smoak grounded to the mound and Lynn started a 1-2-3 double play.

Ole Miss took a 3-1 lead on three hits and the Gamecock error in the top of the third, including the first of Wright’s two doubles. South Carolina bounced back to take a 4-3 lead on Kline’s fourth home run of the season after Campbell had doubled and Smoak had walked.

The lead held up until the seventh when Ole Miss scored four times and added four insurance runs in the eighth inning. Campbell homered in the seventh for the final Gamecock run.

South Carolina returns to action at home on Wednesday night hosting The Citadel at 7 pm.