The South Carolina Gamecocks have returned to the College World Series title series for a third year in a row and the chance to complete a threepeat. On Friday night, the Gamecocks defeated the Arkansas Razorbacks, 3-2, after winning two games on Thursday, including a night victory against Arkansas.
Arkansas had a 2-0 lead after three innings -- third baseman Matt Reynolds driving in both -- but pitching turned on them in the bottom of the fifth inning. Starter D.J. Baxendale put two men on with a single and a walk before seeing Joey Pankake knock a single up the middle for a run. He then issued a walked to load the bases and another one to walk in the tying run. He left the game with all the bases occupied, but the relievers were able to get out of that mess.
Walks came back to haunt the Razorbacks in the bottom of the seventh inning. Colby Suggs walked Pankake and Evan Marzilli. Barrett Astin replaced Suggs, but he loaded the bases with an L.B. Dantzler single. Adam Matthews drew a bases-loaded walk on a 3-2 pitch to put the Gamecocks ahead, 3-2.
Tyler Webb and Matt Price pitched seven innings of relief after Colby Holmes lasted two-plus innings. Webb held the Razorbacks to two hits in four innings while Price struck out five and allowed one hit in three innings. Price also picked up his College World Series-record fifth win.
The Gamecocks play in the best-of-three finals against the Arizona Wildcats starting on Sunday.