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March 20, 2007

Box Score

Columbia, S.C. – South Carolina scored seven runs in the first three innings and behind 16 strikeouts from the pitching staff defeated UNC Asheville 9-2 on Tuesday afternoon in a non-conference game at Sarge Frye Field. Carolina improves to 18-3 on the year while the loss drops UNC-Asheville to 6-17 this season. The Gamecocks return to action on Wednesday, Mar. 21 with a non-conference game at Wofford scheduled for 7 pm.

The Gamecocks used six pitchers with left-handed reliever Alex Farotto earning the win. He is now 1-0 on the year. Farotto went 2.1 innings and allowed just one hit with five strikeouts. Also pitching for the Gamecocks was starter Sean Wideberg, who struck out five batters in 2.2 innings and reliever Nick Godwin who worked 1.1 innings. Craig Thomas and Forrest Beverly each made their first appearances of the season and added two strikeouts apiece as each compiled an inning stint. Jeff Jeffords faced the final two hitters and struck out both batters to close the game out for Carolina.

UNC Asheville starter Chris Nigro suffered the loss and is now 0-2 this season. He lasted only 2.2 innings and gave up seven runs on eight hits. Reliever Andrew Alexander worked the final 5.1 innings and allowed two runs on four hits for the Bulldogs.

Carolina went ahead 3-0 in the first inning. James Darnell drew a one-out walk, stole second base and scored on Trent Kline’s RBI single up the middle. Justin Smoak followed with a two-run homer to left center, his team-leading seventh home run of the year.

The lead was extended to 5-1 in the second inning as Carolina loaded the bases with no outs with Andrew Crisp scoring on a double play and Travis Jones scoring on a RBI single from Darnell. The third inning featured a solo home run from Jon Willard and Crisp scoring his second run of the game on Harley Lail’s RBI base hit. South Carolina moved ahead to a 9-1 lead in the fifth inning on a two-run homer by Lail, his third of the year. UNC Asheville scored single runs in the second and sixth innings on RBI’s from Matt Henson and Cameron Duckworth.

The Gamecocks totaled 12 hits on the afternoon with Lail 2-for-4 with three RBI, Smoak 2-for-4 with two RBI and Crisp 3-for-4 with three runs scored. UNC Asheville scattered nine hits with Brett Robinson 3-for-3 and Steve Burnich and Kyle Smith adding two hits apiece.