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April 5, 2012

South Carolina-Tennessee Game Notes Get Acrobat Reader

Columbia, S.C. – South Carolina (21-8, 3-6 SEC) is back in SEC action this weekend hosting Tennessee (19-10, 5-4 SEC) at Carolina Stadium in a three-game series. First pitch for the series opener on Friday is set for 7 p.m. Saturday’s contest will start at 8 p.m. and will be televised live on ESPNU. The Sunday series finale is scheduled for 1:30 p.m. All three games can also be heard on the Gamecock Radio Network from IMG College. South Carolina is ranked No. 10 in this week’s ESPN/USA Today coaches’ poll, No. 11 in the Baseball America Top 25 and No. 18 in Collegiate Baseball’s Top 30.

Radio: Gamecock IMG Network affiliates/Flagship WNKT FM 107.5 “The Game” in Columbia. Andy Demetra and Tommy Moody will call the action.
Television: Saturday – ESPNU – Carter Blackburn and Ben McDonald call the action.
Internet: Live Gametracker Stats at Additional coverage on Twitter @GamecockBasebll and Facebook/Gamecocksonline

South Carolina Michael Roth (Sr. LHP) 3-0, 1.68 ERA, 48.1 IP, 11 BB, 44 SO
Tennessee Zack Godley (Jr. RHP) 4-1, 3.89 ERA, 44.0 IP, 7 BB, 35 SO

South Carolina Jordan Montgomery (Fr. LHP) 2-0, 3.27 ERA, 22.0 IP, 2 BB, 20 SO
Tennessee T.J. Thornton (Sr. LHP) 0-0, 5.40 ERA, 15.0 IP, 6 BB, 10 SO

South Carolina Colby Holmes (Jr. RHP) 3-0, 2.84 ERA, 31.2 IP, 10 BB, 28 SO
Tennessee Nick Williams (So. RHP) 2-2, 2.32 ERA, 31.0 IP, 11 BB, 26 SO


Overall: SC leads 46-33
Last 5 Years: SC leads 12-3

Last 5 YearsDate    Winner  Score   Site5/11/07 SC  7-1 Knoxville5/12/07 UT  4-3 Knoxville5/13/07 SC  13-7    Knoxville5/15/08 UT  13-2    Columbia5/16/08 SC  7-5 Columbia5/17/08 SC  10-8    Columbia5/8/09  UT  9-5 Knoxville5/9/09  SC  15-12   Columbia5/10/09 SC  15-6    Columbia3/19/10 SC  4-2 Columbia3/20/10 SC  10-7    Columbia3/21/10 SC  4-0 Columbia4/7/11  SC  4-0 Knoxville4/8/11  SC  2-0 Knoxville4/9/11  SC  2-1 Knoxville

South Carolina’s pitching staff leads the Southeastern Conference in opposing batting average, yielding just a .196 clip on the year.

Junior left-hander Adam Westmoreland combined with relievers Tyler Webb and Nolan Belcher in a four-hit shutout and the 10th ranked Gamecocks belted out 13 hits on the way to a 7-0 victory over College of Charleston on Wednesday night at Patriots Point in Charleston, S.C. It marked the second shutout of the year for South Carolina.

Westmoreland limited the College of Charleston to just two hits in 5.1 innings of work while walking one and striking out three. Webb followed him with 2.2 scoreless innings and just two hits allowed while walking one and striking out three as well. Belcher worked a perfect ninth inning with two strikeouts to close out the victory for the Gamecocks. College of Charleston starter Ryan West suffered the loss and is now 2-3 for the season. He allowed two runs on six hits in five innings with two walks and three strikeouts.

All nine position starters reached base at least once for Carolina with eight tallying at least one hit including Joey Pankake, who was 3-for-5 with three runs scored. Christian Walker, Brison Celek and Chase Vergason all had two hits apiece as well.

South Carolina senior left-handed pitcher Michael Roth is the University of South Carolina’s male nominee for the H. Boyd McWhorter Scholar-Athlete Post-Graduate Scholarship that has been presented by the Southeastern Conference since 1986 to the league’s top male and female scholar-athletes.

The Southeastern Conference will name the 2012 recipients of the H. Boyd McWhorter Scholar-Athlete Post-Graduate Scholarship on April 6 in conjunction with National Student-Athlete Day.

Each year, the SEC, in conjunction with AT&T, an SEC Corporate Champion sponsor, provides the league’s male and female McWhorter Scholar-Athlete Post-Graduate Scholarship recipients with a $15,000 post-graduate scholarship. The 22 remaining male and female finalists for the award will also receive a $7,500 post-graduate scholarship.

Roth is on pace to earn a B.S. degree this spring in International Business and Marketing in May of 2012.

Former baseball student-athlete Trey Dyson was the recipient of the 2002 McWhorter award.

Senior left-hander Michael Roth improved to 3-0 on the year with a win in the 8-3 victory vs. Vanderbilt. He allowed three runs on five hits in six-plus innings of work. Roth has a 1.68 ERA in 48.1 innings pitched. He has 44 strikeouts to just 11 walks. Opponents are batting just .162 against him. Roth’s victory vs. Vanderbilt was his 20th career win, making him the 20th player in school history to tally 20 or more career victories.

Junior right-hander Matt Price was stellar out of the bullpen. Price picked up his first save of the season and his 31st of his career to set a school record in the 8-3 win over the Commodores. Price hurled three scoreless innings in the win and did not allow a hit, walked just one and struck out five batters. He followed that up with another stellar relief outing with six innings of relief allowing one run one hit on the way to a 6-4 Carolina victory over Vanderbilt in 13 innings. He had seven strikeouts in the effort. Price is 3-2 for the season with a 3.12 ERA. He has 49 strikeouts in 40.1 innings with opponents batting only .141 against him.

Both Matt Price and Michael Roth are among career leaders in appearances at South Carolina. Price sits at fifth with 83 appearances and Roth is sixth with 81 appearances. Rob Mosser (1990-93) holds the school record.

Appearance List88  Rob Mosser (1990-93)87  Aaron Rawl (2002-05)87  Jason Pomar (1996-99)86  Jamie Poston (1997-00)83  Matt Price (2009-present)81  Michael Roth (2009-present)

South Carolina is 12-6 in games decided by three runs or less through 29 games. The Gamecocks also own a 6-5 record in one-run contests.

Freshman left-hander Jordan Montgomery earned two wins this past week, one as a starter in the 7-3 win at The Citadel and one in relief in the 6-4 win over Vanderbilt. In the 6-4 win over the Commodores, he hurled two scoreless innings with three strikeouts. For the season Montgomery has a 3.27 ERA with 20 strikeouts and just two walks in 22.0 innings pitched.

Junior first baseman Christian Walker was the top hitter for the Gamecocks in the Vanderbilt series as he hit .500 (6-for-12) with a .625 on-base percentage and a phenomenal 1.250 slugging percentage. Walker belted three homers in the series and drove in five runs with five runs scored as well. Walker tallied his first two-homer game of his career at South Carolina with three RBI and three runs scored in the 8-3 win on Friday vs. the Commodores. In Sunday’s 6-4 win, he reached base five times including a game-winning two-run homer in the top of the 13th in the victory. Walker is Carolina’s leading hitter with a .340 average (36-for-106) with six homers and 29 RBI for the season. His on-base percentage is .458 with 20 walks, four hit by pitches and just 11 strikeouts. His slugging percentage is .566.

Walker also became the 25th player in South Carolina history to reach the 200 career hit total. He is now at 205 for his three-year career with the Garnet & Black, 23rd best in school history. He is 28 hits shy of Hank Small (1972-75) and the Top 10 career hits total at Carolina.

Top 10 Career Hits List303 Mac White (1991-94)299 Michael Campbell (2003-06)285 Drew Meyer (2000-02)265 Landon Powell (2001-04)265 Derick Urquhart (1995-98)263 Whit Merrifield (2008-10)262 Andrew Crisp (2005-09)250 Mike Curry (1996-98)246 Justin Smoak (2006-08)245 Hank Small (1972-75)------------------------------------------------------------------207     Christian Walker (2010-present) (23rd currently)

In SEC games, Walker is among the best in the entire league. Through nine SEC games, Walker is first in slugging percentage (.758), home runs (4) and walks (10). He is tied for second in runs scored (11), total bases (25), tied for fourth in runs batted in (8) and is sixth in on-base percentage (.488).

Junior outfielder Evan Marzilli has reached base in all 29 games this year. He is hitting .314 (37-for-118) with 23 runs scored and 14 RBI. He owns a .400 on-base percentage. His key one-out single helped lead to Walker’s homer in the 6-4 victory on Sunday vs. Vanderbilt.

Marzilli had four hits including a three-run homer in the 8-5 win over Furman and was 3-for-4 win the 9-3 win over Florida. Marzilli had a game-winning three-run double as well as a career-high four RBI in the 6-4 win over Appalachian State. He also tied a school record with three doubles in the 2-1 win over Princeton. It is the 25th time in school history that a player has tallied three doubles in one game.

Marzilli’s defense was essential for the Gamecocks in the 3-2 win over Clemson in 11 innings. Marzilli had his first assist of the year with a throw to home plate to nab a Tiger runner trying to score and his diving catch with two outs in the bottom of the 11th inning sealed the Gamecock victory.

Marzilli was effective in the first weekend vs. VMI as he hit .500 (6-for-12) with a .538 on-base percentage. Marzilli had a 3-for-4 day at the plate on Opening Day. He scored the game-winning run in the opener and also was key in the 13-1 victory as he went 2-for-4 with a triple, run scored and two RBI.

The Gamecocks have also been playing pretty good defense with 13 errorless games on the year. South Carolina is fielding .976 with only 26 errors for the season. That is fourth best in the Southeastern Conference.

South Carolina’s pitching staff has a team ERA of 2.96. The staff has 271 strikeouts to 92 walks in 264.2 innings pitched.

Freshman infielder Joey Pankake follows Marzilli in the batting order and he has swung the hot bat as of late. Pankake tallied two doubles and scored a run in the 6-4 win over Vanderbilt. Pankake is hitting .341 (29-for-85) with 22 runs scored, seven doubles, a triple, two homers and nine RBI.

He had a 5-for-6 game with a pair of RBI in the 8-5 win over Furman. The last Gamecock player with five hits in a game was Christian Walker on April 5, 2011 vs. USC Upstate.

He tallied his first career homer and RBI in the 2-1 win vs. Presbyterian. The game-winning hit came in the bottom of the fourth inning. In the Elon series, he was 2-for-4 with a triple and three runs scored in the 8-1 win in the opener. He had two walks in game two and a hit and a run scored in the Sunday series finale.

Junior left-hander Tyler Webb has continued to shine in his role out of the bullpen. Webb leads the SEC with 16 relief appearances. Webb pitched 3.2 scoreless innings with just two hits allowed and two strikeouts in the 5-4 loss to Florida. For the season, Webb is 2-0 with a 0.81 ERA and 25 strikeouts in 22.1 innings. Opponents are batting .157 against him.

Another key offensive contributor has been freshman outfielder Tanner English. English leads the Gamecocks with 12 multi-hit games. English is batting .295 (33-for-112) and has scored 18 runs for the season. English had two hits in the 8-3 win over Vanderbilt as well as two hits in the 12-4 loss to the Commodores.

He tallied two hits in the 9-3 win over Florida. He was 2-for-5 with a run scored in the 8-5 win over Furman. He had a season-high three hits and a run scored in the 5-2 win over Charleston Southern. English went 2-for-4 with two runs in the 8-1 win over UNC Asheville. He scored a run in all three games of the Elon series and hit safely in all three games as well. English drove in three runs for the weekend with a key two-run triple to left-center in 6-0 win over Elon in the second inning.

Sophomore Brison Celek was the starting designated hitter for all four games this past week. He drove in two runs in the 7-3 win at The Citadel. He also had a two-run double in the 8-3 win at Vanderbilt. He is batting .353 in 16 games (12-for-34) with three runs scored, four doubles and six RBI.