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April 26, 2015

Box Score

KNOXVILLE, TENN. – South Carolina raced out to a 3-0 lead in the top of the first but Tennessee rallied with a pair of runs in the bottom half of the frame and a six-run sixth inning on the way to a 10-4 victory over the Gamecocks in the rubber game of a three-game series at Lindsey Nelson Stadium. The Gamecocks fall to 26-19 and 9-12 in the SEC with Tennessee now 18-21 and 7-14 in league play.

Carolina left-hander Josh Reagan suffered the loss and is now 1-2 on the year. He allowed five runs on seven hits in five-plus innings with a walk and three strikeouts. Tennessee reliever Kyle Serrano earned the win with five innings of work allowing one run on three hits with a walk and five strikeouts. He is 3-4 on the year.

For the third straight game, the Gamecocks scored in the first inning breaking out to a three-run advantage against the Volunteers. DC Arendas reached base on a one-out single and Kyle Martin drew a walk that set the stage for Elliott Caldwell, who crushed the first pitch he saw for a triple to left-center scoring both runners. The triple for Caldwell was his seventh of the year setting a school record. Alex Destino would drive in Caldwell with a RBI double to left field.

Tennessee would get a pair of runs back in the bottom half of the first. Nick Senzel reached base on an infield single and scored on A.J. Simcox’s RBI triple to left-center. After back-to-back strikeouts by Reagan, the Volunteers would score the second run with two outs as Jordan Rodgers singled to right field.

With the Gamecocks ahead 3-2 in the sixth inning, Tennessee sent 12 batters to the plate and scored six runs to take an 8-3 lead. Senzel led off with a walk and Simcox singled to open the frame. Christin Stewart then knocked a double to right field scoring Senzel. The Gamecocks would make a pitching change as Reagan departed for right-handed reliever Brandon Murray. Andrew Lee stepped to the plate for Tennessee and doubled to center field to score both runners. Chris Hall would follow with a RBI base hit. With two outs, Parker Wormsley added a RBI single and consecutive walks to Senzel and Simcox scored the sixth run of the inning for the Volunteers.

Carolina answered with a run in the top of the seventh as Martin knocked a one-out double over the head of UT center fielder Chris Hall, advanced to third on a wild pitch and scored on Caldwell’s sac fly to center. Tennessee would respond in the bottom of the seventh with two more runs on a two-out two-run single by Wormsley.

Caldwell drove in three runs with Martin 1-for-2 with two runs scored and Arendas finished 2-for-4 with a run scored to lead Carolina at the plate. Tennessee had 13 hits including three from Simcox, two from Lee, two from Hall and two from Wormsley.

Consecutive doubles by Christin Stewart and Andrew Lee in the sixth inning drove in three runs and led to the six-run frame for the Volunteers.

The Gamecocks were limited to just three hits after the first two innings. Tennessee had eight of 13 hits in the sixth and seventh innings to score eight runs.

• Elliott Caldwell’s first inning triple was his seventh of the season. That leads the SEC and is a single-season school record. The previous record was six set by Brian Buscher in 2002 and matched by Jake Williams in 2011.
• DC Arendas went 2-for-4 to record his fifth multi-hit game of the season.
• Caldwell drove in three runs and has seven multi-RBI games on the year.
• The 10-4 loss snapped a streak of five consecutive games that the Gamecocks had allowed four runs or less.

Head Coach Chad Holbrook

“We were feeling pretty good about ourselves after our top half of the first and then we can’t make a play on a little comebacker between the catcher and pitcher and they got two runs there. They earned it, but we contributed to the two runs there. We were kind of on our heels a little bit, even though we were ahead. We couldn’t sustain any quality at bats after that, Serrano came in and kind of kept us at bay. He had some good stuff, threw strikes. When he is in the strike zone, he is tough.”

“We might have kept (Josh Reagan) him a little bit longer than I wanted to. I kind of went into the game thinking if he gives us five, it would be good. The top of their lineup has some pretty good hitters, seeing (Josh) for the third time they were a little bit more comfortable. We couldn’t stop the momentum. Their best hitters put some pretty good swings on it. It kind of opened the floodgates. Josh made some pretty good pitches too. He left a couple (of pitches) over the heart of the plate and they put good swings on it.”

South Carolina returns home to host Auburn for a three-game series. First pitch for the opener is on Friday at 7 p.m. ET. It will be broadcast on SEC Network Plus and can be heard on the Gamecock IMG Network including flagship station, 107.5 FM, “The Game.”