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Baseball Heads to Rock Hill for Wednesday Night Game at Winthrop
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Baseball Heads to Rock Hill for Wednesday Night Game at Winthrop

by Kent Reichert

The Gamecocks and Eagles meet for the second time this season.

COLUMBIA, S.C. — The University of South Carolina baseball team hits the road for the first of four straight games away from Founders Park this Wednesday (April 20) when the Gamecocks face Winthrop in Rock Hill, S.C. First pitch is scheduled for 6 p.m. Wednesday’s game will be streamed on ESPN+. All games also will be broadcast on the Gamecock Sports Network with Derek Scott and Tommy Moody on the call. The Gamecocks are coming off a series win over No. 25 Ole Miss, winning Friday’s game, 4-2, behind 7.2 innings from Noah Hall and Saturday’s game, 9-8, with a Jalen Vasquez walk-off sacrifice fly.

The Eagles are coming off a 15-5 loss to Davidson on Tuesday night (April 19). Dillon Morton and Jack Spyke had two hits each vs. the Wildcats. On the season, Joey Tepper is hitting .305 with six doubles and 19 RBI, while Morton has a team best seven home runs to go along with 27 RBI.    

Carolina leads the all-time series with Winthrop, 22-7, including seven wins in a row heading into Wednesday’s game. The Gamecocks defeated the Eagles, 7-1, on Feb. 22 in the first midweek game of 2022. Kevin Madden homered and Andrew Eyster had three hits in the win while Cade Austin struck out three in a four-inning start.

South Carolina Eli Jones (Fr. RHP) 0-0, 4.76 ERA, 5.2 IP, 0 BB, 4 SO
Winthrop  Willie Lumpkin (So. RHP) 3-1, 8.15 ERA, 17.2 IP, 7 BB, 11 SO
Jalen Vasquez’s sacrifice fly to center scored Talmadge LeCroy and gave Carolina a 9-8 walk-off win over Ole Miss on April 16, clinching a series win over the Rebels. It is Vasquez’s second career RBI, first in SEC play. The win was Carolina’s second walk-off win of the season as the Gamecocks walked off UNC Greensboro, 8-7 in 10 innings, on Feb. 20.

Josiah Sightler, who now leads the team with seven home runs, had a pair of blasts in the series win over Ole Miss. His three-run home run in the third inning on Friday was huge in a 4-2 win. Then, he added much needed insurance in the eighth inning on Saturday in an eventual 9-8 win. Sightler had three home runs on the week and in the last 10 games, has four round trippers to go along with a .353 batting average.

Carolina faces No. 19 Auburn at Plainsman Park April 22-24. All three games will be on SEC Network Plus.