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Cocks Heading To Omaha And CWS

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Cocks Heading To Omaha And CWS

Post  Carolina Kat on Mon Jun 14, 2010 1:07 am

Super win: Gamecocks head to CWS

Christian Walker's heroic home run lifts USC to Omaha



USC players celebrate their 10-9 victory over Coastal Carolina in the Myrtle Beach Super Regional NCAA tournament at BB&T Coastal Field in Myrtle Beach on June 13, 2010. The win put the Gamecocks into the College World Series.
Rich Glickstein /The State

THE ASSOCIATED PRESS

Posted on 06.13.10

Christian Walker hit a go-ahead three-run homer in the eighth inning to send South Carolina to a 10-9 victory over Coastal Carolina and a spot in the College World Series.

The Gamecocks (48-15) trailed 9-7 when Jackie Bradley Jr. drew a two-out walk and Adrian Morales followed with a double off the wall in left. That's when Walker drilled a shot into the stands in left for his seventh homer — the biggest of his freshman season.

South Carolina players spilled out to greet Walker when he touched home.

Closer Matt Price worked a perfect ninth for his 10th save.
Coastal Carolina (55-10) came into the NCAA super regional series with the country's most victories and the No. 4 overall seed.

But the Chanticleers were outplayed in both games — beaten by South Carolina's superior pitching and defense in a 4-3 win Saturday and outslugged by the Gamecocks in this one.

Coastal Carolina was also done in by shaky defense that committed five errors, the team's most in a game since a win over Liberty on May 1, 2009.

It is South Carolina's first CWS appearance since a run of three-straight visits ended in 2004. The Gamecocks play the winner of the Virginia-Oklahoma Super Regional.

The CWS begins Saturday in Omaha, Neb., though the official schedule has not yet been set.

Price had saved the Gamecocks first-game victory and had little trouble shutting down the high-powered Chants in the ninth. He struck out Taylor Motter, got Daniel Bowman on a lazy fly ball to right and Rich Witten on a grounder to short.

Price tossed his glove high when the final out was made, the rest of the Gamecocks streaming toward the mound for a celebratory dogpile.

This one was nothing like Saturday's opener, a showcase of clutch relief pitching and timely defense that South Carolina won, 4-3.

This time, the teams combined for 10 runs through three innings. Coastal got solo homers from Rico Noel and Motter the first two innings.

South Carolina tied the game at 5-all in the third on RBI hits by Adam Matthews and Kyle Enders.

The Gamecocks rallied from 7-5 down in the sixth on a run-scoring single by pinch-hitter Nick Ebert and a throwing error by Bowman, Coastal's third baseman, that permitted pinch runner Robert Beary to score.

Coastal Carolina moved in front one last time, leading 9-7 on Bowman's solo homer to left — his second in as many games — and an RBI single by Jose Iglesias.

The Chants and reliever Austin Fleet seemed in control in the eighth after Whit Merrifield grounded into a double-play following a leadoff walk to Beary. However, things quickly got away from Fleet.

He pitched carefully on the walk to Bradley, but could not contain Morales or Walker.

Walker's winning hit came on a 1-2 count, after Fleet started him off with two strikes.

Ethan Carter (3-0), the sixth of South Carolina's seven pitchers, picked up the victory.

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