STARKVILLE (USC SID) – Cole Messina broke a 3-all tie with a two-run home run as the University of South Carolina baseball team moved to 7-0 in the SEC for the first time in program history with a 6-4 win over Mississippi State Thursday night (March 30) at Dudy Noble Field.
Messina’s two-run home run in the seventh broke up the deadlock. Carolina tacked on an insurance run in the ninth on Dylan Brewer’s RBI single. Mississippi State scored a run in the ninth, but a big 4-3 double play and a strikeout from Cade Austin ended the contest.
Brewer’s RBI double in the fourth tied the game at one. Then in the fifth, Ethan Petry’s solo home run to left made it 2-1 Gamecocks. Michael Braswell drove in the second run of the inning with a double to right. The Bulldogs re-tied the game at three in the bottom of the fifth, but Messina gave Carolina the lead for good with his 10th home run of the year.
On the mound, James Hicks earned the win, striking out a pair in two innings. Eli Jones earned the start, allowing three hits and a run with two strikeouts in four innings. Chris Veach threw two scoreless innings and Austin picked up his first save of the season.
Brewer had three hits in the win, while Petry, Messina and Braswell had two hits apiece.
- Carolina is still on pace with the 1975 team for best start after 27 games (25-2).
- Petry hit his 13th home run of the season. The Gamecocks now have 68 home runs on the year.
- Jones made his first career SEC start and now has an ERA of 1.85.
- Carolina has won two straight games against Mississippi State in Starkville. Carolina won the last game of the series in 2019.
Carolina and Mississippi State continue the three-game series Friday night (March 31) at 7 p.m. EDT (6 pm CDT) at Dudy Noble Field. The game will be streamed on SEC Network Plus.