What could South Carolina Gamecocks junior catcher Grayson Greiner do for an encore after beating the Tennessee Volunteers with a walk-off grand slam the other day at Carolina Stadium? How about another walkoff.
Greiner lined a game-winning pinch hit single to right with one out in the bottom of the ninth to fend off the App State upset bid and give the top-ranked Gamecocks a 2-1 home victory.
This one was a struggle, though, for the home team (25-3, 22-1 at home).
The Mountaineers pitching staff looked strong throughout, holding the Gamecocks bats at bay, except for Connor Bright (3-4, RBI). In fact, it was Bright who brought in South Carolina’s first run of the game in the bottom of the 4th.
But Evan Beal was better, twirling a gem through five and a third shutout innings, allowing two hits and walking none while striking out three. It wasn’t until he was lifted in the 6th that the Mountaineers found the scoreboard, thanks to a Josh Reagan misthrow on a pickoff attempt and a Jaylin Davis RBI single to knot it up.
That, though, would set up the final events in the 9th. Bright would single and advance on a sac bunt. Greiner, who had the night off, would step up and line a payoff pitch to right to set off the celebration.
Vince Fiori picked up the win as he pitched one and a third innings of perfect relief. Taylor Thurber (2.1 IP, 1 R, 3 H) was the hard-luck loser.
The Gamecocks hit the road to travel to Arkansas as they commence SEC play. First pitch is set for 8pm ET on Thursday (nationally televised on ESPNU), 7:35pm ET on Friday and 7pm ET Saturday.