No. 14 Georgia takes series over South Carolina

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Georgia Athletics

Photo: Georgia Athletics

COLUMBIA, S.C.——The 17th-ranked Georgia Bulldogs claimed an SEC road series with a 13-9 victory over South Carolina Sunday at Founders Park in front of a crowd of 6,024.

Georgia (24-8, 8-4 SEC) jumped ahead 5-0 in the first, sending eight Bulldogs to the plate. With one out, Georgia collected four straight singles with Connor Tate and Parks Harber driving in runs for a 2-0 lead. Then, senior Chaney Rogers smashed a three-run home run to cap the scoring off freshman right-hander Aidan Hunter. In the fourth, the Bulldogs sent nine men to the p6late and extended their lead to 8-0. Georgia scored three runs on one hit, an RB-double by Acton, plus a bases-loaded walk to Harber and a wild pitch by Brett Thomas.

Sophomore left-hander Liam Sullivan returned to the rotation on a pitch count, pitching for the first time since March 13 when he tossed five scoreless frames in a win over Lipscomb. He had been out resting a sore arm. Sullivan pitched three scoreless frames before leaving with two on and nobody out in the fourth, throwing 48 pitches. Freshman Chandler Marsh came on and USC scratched for a run on one hit. However, the Gamecocks left two men in scoring position as Marsh struck out a pair, hitting 95 miles per hour three times to keep Georgia in front 8-1.

USC (15-16, 4-8 SEC) pushed across three runs on three hits in the fifth to close the gap to 8-4. Georgia answered in the top of the sixth, scoring four runs on three hits to extend its lead back up to eight at 12-4. Josh McAllister and Chaney Rogers delivered two-run singles to highlight the outburst. It gave Rogers a career-high five RBI on the afternoon. The Gamecocks responded in their half of the sixth, scoring four runs to chase Jaden Woods as the Bulldogs turned to closer Jack Gowen with the Bulldogs holding a 12-8 lead.

In the top of the seventh, Corey Collins crushed his team-leading eighth home run, a solo shot off Cade Austin to make it 13-8. Gowen, who was making his second appearance in the series and third of the week, finished the game, tossing 3.2 innings with six strikeouts for his fifth save. The only run he allowed this week was a solo home run with one out in the ninth Sunday.

“Jack was great, he was great on Tuesday at Clemson, here on Friday and again today” said Georgia’s Ike Cousins head baseball coach Scott Stricklin. “He got 11 outs today starting with a double play and never really let them get comfortable. Bottom line, he really competed well. He was the MVP from this weekend. Nolan Crisp, Chaney Rogers, Parks Harber, they all came up big this weekend in winning a road series. Jack really picked our staff up.

“Chaney and Parks were locked in all day and had the big hits,” Stricklin added. “It makes our lineup dangerous when everybody is going. It was a big boost to get Liam (Sullivan) back. If you would’ve told me that we’d be 8-4 in the SEC at this point without Dylan Ross, Will Childers, Liam Sullivan and Jonathan Cannon, no way would I have believed you. I’m really proud of this team and how they’ve battled.”

The Bulldogs are now 17-7 against USC in the Stricklin era including winning seven of eight series.

Georgia concludes a five-game road swing Tuesday against Kennesaw State (20-9). First pitch is set for 7 p.m., and the game will be available on ESPN+ as well as the Georgia Bulldog Sports Network.

Quick Hits

*Senior closer and co-captain Jack Gowen made three appearances this week including two in the USC series, and he provided 5.2 innings with 10 strikeouts. He notched two saves in the USC series including pitching a caereer-long 3.2 innings Sunday with six strikeouts. The lone run allowed was a home run with one out in the ninth Sunday.

*Graduate Ben Anderson extended his on base streak go to 30 games when he drew a walk in the fourth. He has reached base safely in every game he has played in this season.

*Senior Chaney Rogers tallied a career-high five RBI as part of a 2-for-4 afternoon including a three-run home run in the first.

*Sophomore Parks Harber’s RBI-single in the first extended his hitting streak to a career-best seven games. He established a new career-high with a four-hit day and reached base in all five plate appearances with a walk.

*Senior Cory Acton’s RBI-double in the fourth gave him a 13-game on base streak.

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