- Braden Maloy
South Carolina Softball Sweeps Coastal Carolina
COLUMBIA, SC --- No. 18 South Carolina hosted Coastal Carolina in a double-header for their home opener on Wednesday. Due to COVID-19 shortening the 2020 season, this was the first home game for the Gamecocks in 348 days.
Behind strong pitching, it was a one-sided affair for both games as South Carolina defeated the Chanticleers 8-0 in the first game, followed by a 10-0 victory in the second game, with neither game reaching the 7th inning via run rule.
The Gamecocks only threw two pitchers on the day as Leah Powell, in her collegiate debut, and Rachel Vaughan both threw complete game shutouts, allowing just one hit and one walk across the two games.
Over the Gamecocks’ first five games, USC pitchers have thrown 16 strikeouts, allowed just 5 walks and have posted a staggering 0.68 earned run average.
South Carolina Head Coach Beverly Smith believes pitching will be the key for her team this season, “If you’re looking at our schedule, you’re seeing more doubleheaders.... I just think having depth in the bullpen is going to be a great value to us.”
While pitching helped USC defensively, eighteen runs across two games doesn’t come without some solid power at the plate. The Gamecocks had seven extra-base hits, three of those being triples in the first game. Graduate students Mackenzie Boesel and Kenzi Maguire each had strong offensive showings, going 6-for-7 with 6 RBIs and 6 walks.
Junior USC catcher Jordan Fabian got in on the action as well, launching a three-run homerun over the left field wall in the second game.
For the second straight season, the Gamecocks have opened the year with a 4-1 overall record.
This weekend South Carolina will host the Gamecock International at Beckham Field, with USC’s first action scheduled for Friday at 12:30 p.m. against Seton Hall.