The No. 12 South Carolina baseball team dropped its first series of the season, resulting in a sweep by No. 19 Texas at UFCU Disch-Falk Field in Austin.
For an offense that had been scoring at a premium, the Gamecocks managed to muster six runs against a very talented Texas pitching staff.
The Gamecocks lost 4-1 to the Longhorns on Friday night in a game that was bound to be a pitcher's duel.
Redshirt junior right-handed pitcher Thomas Farr did everything he could for the Gamecocks, striking out a career-high 10 batters in six innings of one run ball. However, the bullpen faltered in the eighth inning, surrendering three runs, which would be the difference in the game.
The series-opening loss snaps a 16-game winning streak that dates back to last season.
"That's baseball," Farr said postgame. "Texas played a really good game tonight. We played a really good game. We just came up a little bit short. I think we all know that's how baseball goes, and that's why you play three games and not one."
South Carolina's bats were unable to find success against redshirt sophomore right-hander Ty Madden. In seven innings, the Longhorn's ace dominated as he struck out five, allowing one run on three hits.
The Gamecocks' only run of the night came off the bat of sophomore infielder Braylen Wimmer, who hit a sacrifice fly in the second inning.
Despite pitching 8.2 innings without allowing a run this season, freshman right-handed reliever Will Sanders gave up three runs on two hits in the eighth inning Friday.
The Gamecocks struggled again offensively as they fell to the Longhorns 3-0 on Saturday in game two. This is South Carolina’s first series loss of the season and its first time being shut out since April 27, 2019, against Missouri.
"I’m disappointed we got shut out, I told the guys I’m disappointed in that, I’m not disappointed in them," head coach Mark Kingston said postgame. "I thought they battled and facing really good pitching, we’ve just got to do a better job.”
Despite out hitting the Longhorns 7-4, the Gamecocks were unable to bring in any runs, leaving eight runners stranded on base throughout the game.
South Carolina faced another power-arm in redshirt junior right-hander Tristan Stevens, who struck out five batters in six innings with only one walk.
Fifth-year shortstop George Callil did have a season-high two hits at two at-bats, with singles in the third and seventh inning. Senior right fielder Andrew Eyster also recorded his first stolen base of the season in the second inning.
Despite not being able to get anything going on offense, the Carolina bullpen had another solid outing throwing nine strikeouts but allowing three runs and walking six batters.
Senior right-handed pitcher Brannon Jordan was able to hold Texas off for four innings, striking out six batters with no walks. Trouble came at the bottom of the fifth when redshirt freshmen catcher Peyton Powell hit the first of two one-run homers out of the park to put Texas on the board, giving Jordan his first loss of the season.
"It was tough to get adjusted to the mound and you could kind of see that from our pitchers today," Jordan said postgame. "But we did a really good job at just staying together and pitched them pretty well."
The weekend did not get any better for South Carolina, departing from the Lone Star State with an 8-5 loss on Sunday afternoon.
"Disappointed with the weekend, the results obviously, but we learned a lot about this team that we can take forward, you know, both good and bad," Kingston said.
While it was the offense that struggled in the first two games of the series, poor pitching and three defensive errors proved to be costly in the series finale.
On the mound, redshirt sophomore left-hander Julian Bosnic had trouble with command as 47 of his 86 pitches were called for strikes. In three innings, he allowed six runs (four earned) on four hits while walking four batters.
In relief, redshirt junior right-handed pitcher Andrew Peters did not look sharp, allowing two runs on three hits, giving the Longhorns an 8-2 lead heading into the fifth inning.
With runners in scoring position, the Gamecocks offense went 3-for-18, leaving 13 on-base. While they did score five runs on Sunday, there was never a point in the game where the team had the lead.
Sophomore center fielder Braylen Wimmer put together a phenomenal performance at the plate, going 4-for-4 with an RBI and two doubles.
Junior catcher Wes Clarke hit his NCAA-leading ninth home run of the season in the third inning.
After nearly missing a few home runs in his previous at-bats, Kingston said Clarke "could have easily had four homers this weekend."
Before beginning SEC play with No. 2 Vanderbilt on Friday, the Gamecocks will head home to play Davidson on Tuesday at Founders Park. The game can be streamed on SEC Network+ with first pitch scheduled for 7 p.m.