Gamecocks top Razorbacks to win sixth straight SEC series

Scoreless through sixth innings, third ranked South Carolina erupted for a combined 10 runs in the seventh and eighth innings and held on for a 10-7 victory over 13th ranked Arkansas on Sunday afternoon to win the rubber game of the three-game series, the sixth consecutive series victory for the Gamecocks.

South Carolina is now 36-12 and 16-8 in the SEC, tied for first place with LSU and currently one game ahead of Kentucky for first place in the Eastern Division. Arkansas falls to 34-15 and 12-12 in the SEC.

Gamecock right-hander Matt Price earned the win in relief and is now 4-3 on the year after working the final 3.2 innings of the game. Arkansas starter DJ Baxendale suffered the loss and is now 6-3 for the season. He allowed four runs on five hits with one walk and seven strikeouts.

Baxendale and Carolina starter Forrest Koumas were very effective through the first two-thirds of the game with neither allowing a base runner to cross home plate. Koumas, in his second start of the year, went 5.1 scoreless innings and allowed two walks and five hits with four strikeouts.

Arkansas threatened in the bottom of the sixth inning loading the bases with one out against Koumas. Jacob Mahan singled, as did Dominic Ficociello and Matt Reynolds walked to fill the bases for the Razorbacks. With Price on in relief for the Gamecocks, South Carolina kept it at 0-0 as a flyout by Derrick Bleeker turned into a double play as right fielder Adam Matthews heaved a perfect throw to catcher Grayson Greiner, who tagged out Mahan to keep the game scoreless.

Carolina rode the momentum of the double play into the seventh inning scoring four times against Baxendale to take a 4-0 lead. Christian Walker led off with a base hit. On the play, an errant throw by Baxendale off the mound went past Ficociello at first allowing Walker to advance into scoring position. With one out and Walker still on second base, Arkansas elected to intentionally walk Greiner.

With two outs and runners still on first and second base, Matthews followed his heroics on the field with a RBI base hit up the middle scoring Walker for the first run of the game. Chase Vergason followed with a base hit up the middle as well to score Greiner and Tanner English kept the hit parade going as he singled to center field scoring both runners and giving the Gamecocks a four-run cushion.

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