Tough loss for the Tigers. Crawford had the one bad inning in the second, giving the Gamecocks all 5 of their runs on 2 homers, one of them with 2 outs. Tigers outplayed them for 8 innings and out-hit them 11-9. It ended a 5-game win streak, and both of the Tigers' losses this season are by one run with the tying run on base.
Mat Clark was superb once again in relief, going 4.1 scoreless innings with 2 hits, 6 K's and a walk. Michael Green broke out of his slump with a dying quail single followed by a seeing-eye single and a hard-hit out to the fence. Hopefully that gets his bat going! It was a tough night for Davis Sharpe. He had a single but struck out 4 times, including the last at bat to end the game with the tying run on base.
Game 2 will be in Greenville at 1:00 tomorrow, and Sharpe will have a chance at revenge on the mound. The 2-way freshman has 19 K's and has not allowed a run in 11 innings this season. Monte Lee has won all 3 series against the Gamecocks.
Post-game interviews with Monte Lee, Mat Clark and Grayson Byrd are below!
CLEMSON, S.C. - Home runs by Andrew Eyster and TJ Hopkins in the second inning scored all of South Carolina's runs in its 5-4 win over No. 14 Clemson at Doug Kingsmore Stadium on Friday night. The Gamecocks, who took a 1-0 series lead and won their eighth game in a row, improved to 8-1, while the Tigers, who had their five-game winning streak snapped, fell to 7-2.
Grayson Byrd lined a two-run homer, his second of the year, in the first inning, then Eyster and Hopkins responded with a two-run homer and three-run homer, respectively, in the second inning. Michael Green grounded a run-scoring single in the third inning and Sam hall lofted a sacrifice fly in the fourth inning, but both teams were scoreless during the rest of the game.
Gamecock reliever Wesley Sweatt (1-0) earned his first career win by tossing 1.2 innings, while Brett Kerry pitched the final 3.1 innings without allowing a run to record his second save of the year. Tiger senior Brooks Crawford (0-1) suffered the loss, just the third of his career, in a starting role. Mat Clark pitched 4.1 scoreless innings in relief with a career-high six strikeouts.
The series continues Saturday at 1 p.m., at Fluor Field in Greenville, S.C., on SEC Network+. Clemson is the designated visiting team and will occupy the third-base dugout.