I’m going to be honest: this game was kind of a snoozer. The Gamecocks managed just enough offense to top the Broncs 2-0 and win the first game of this weekend’s series, though, and today is my birthday, so special thanks to the guys for giving me a win as a gift.
USC first got on the board in the third inning. George Iskenderian singled up the middle with one out, then with two outs, Graham Saiko reached first on a throwing error and Iskenderian made it all the way home for the first run of the game.
The Cocks scored their only other run in the sixth inning. Saiko hit a one-out single, Chase Vergason knocked a base hit to put runners on the corners, and Joey Pankake singled to left to bring Saiko in and make it 2-0 Carolina.
The Broncs had a chance to tie things up in the top of the seventh inning. After getting the first two batters on base via walks, a double play left only a runner on third. Another walk put runners on the corners, but a strikeout ended the threat before any damage was done.
Both starting pitchers were solid tonight, which contributed to the very minimal offensive output on both sides. Evan Beal, making the second start of his career, got the win, his first of the season. He worked six innings and allowed just one hit and two walks, while striking out six. Tyler Webb got the save, his fourth of the season. He went 2 1/3 innings, did not give up a hit or a walk, and struck out four batters. Rider’s Tyler Smith pitched the whole game and allowed two runs on seven hits, issued one walk, and struck out eight. Though he took the loss and drops to 2-1 on the season, he looked pretty impressive tonight.