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February 3, 2013

Martin, Carson homers highlight scrimmage

South Carolina scrimmaged for the fourth time during preseason camp on Sunday in front of a crowd of several hundred supporters at Carolina Stadium. USC is scheduled to scrimmage at 3 p.m. on Monday.

The season-opener is at 3 p.m. on Feb. 15 against Liberty in the first of a three-game series.

Home -- CF Tanner English, 2B Ahmad Christian, LF Graham Saiko, SS Max Schrock, C Grayson Greiner, 1B LB Dantzler, DH Erik Payne, RF TJ Costen, 3B Chase Vergason, DH Patrick Harrington

Visitor -- CF Shon Carson, RF Connor Bright, EH Curt Britt, 3B George Iskenderian, 1B Kyle Martin, DH Brison Celek, SS DC Arendas, DH Sean Sullivan, LF Kwinton Smith, C Dante Rosenberg

SCRIMMAGE SUMMARY: Consecutive run-scoring hits in the top of the third scored three runs and gave the visiting team all the runs it would need in a 6-2 victory. Four pitchers led by starter Nolan Belcher held the home team to six hits on a sunny and blustery afternoon.

Kyle Martin gave the visiting team consisting mainly of reserves a 1-0 lead in the top of the second with a home run beyond the railing overlooking right field. It was the second hit off freshman southpaw Jack Wynkoop, who allowed a one-out bloop single to Connor Bright in the first.

The visitors erupted for three runs in the top of the third when consecutive singles by Dante Rosenberg (center) and Shon Carson (first-base line) was succeeded one out later by a two-run double into the right field corner by promising freshman Curt Britt.

Moments later, Britt plated the third run of the inning when freshman George Iskenderian singled into center for an RBI.

After seeing just one baserunner reach second base in the first four innings, the home team finally got on the scoreboard with back-to-back doubles by Erik Payne and TJ Costen to opposite sides of the field in the bottom of the fifth.

Payne smoked an offering from Forrest Koumas into the left-field corner, while Costen lined a pitch down the right-field line to cut the deficit to 4-1.

Carson, one of three Gamecock football players trying to make the roster, lifted the visitors to a 6-1 lead in the top of the eighth when he popped a two-run homer over the fence in right-center off Adam Westmoreland.

Leading off for the visiting team, Carson was 3-for-4 with a homer and two singles in the scrimmage, while sophomore Connor Bright and Iskenderian collected two hits apiece. Britt had a single and two walks.

The visitors assembled 11 hits against a trio of home team pitchers - Wynkoop, Joel Seddon and Westmoreland - that each worked three innings.

The home team scored a meaningless run in the bottom of the ninth on an RBI single by Zack Smith, a transfer from USC-Sumter fighting to make the roster.

The quartet of visiting pitchers (Belcher, Koumas, Evan Beal and Vince Fiori) held the top five hitters in the home team's batting order in check all afternoon.

Tanner English, Ahmad Christian, Graham Saiko, Max Schrock, Grayson Greiner and LB Dantzler were a combined 0-for-19 at the plate with a sacrifice and walk, both by English.

Belcher set down the first seven home batters before allowing a one-out single in the third.

The final score would have been more lopsided had Seddon not been able to wiggle out of a bases-loaded, no-out jam in the top of the sixth.

Singles by Carson and Bright, and a walk to Britt, filled the bases, but Seddon fanned Iskenderian before getting Martin to line softly to second and Brison Celek to fly out deep to right in front of the USC bullpen.

The defensive play of the scrimmage was turned in by Arendas, when he ranged deep into the hole and jump-threw to first, robbing Saiko of a hit in the bottom of the seventh. Right now, the USC coaches plan to utilize Arendas, the nephew of coach Chad Holbrook, as the backup shortstop to Joey Pankake, who didn't start the scrimmage because of a minor finger injury.

Jack Wynkoop - 3IP, 4R, 6H, 1K
Nolan Belcher - 3IP, 2H, 2K, 1BB
Joel Seddon - 3IP, 2H, 3K, 1BB
Forrest Koumas - 2IP, 1R, 2H, 2K
Evan Beal - 2IP, 1H, 1K
Adam Westmoreland - 3IP, 2R, 3H, 4K, 1BB
Vince Fiori - 2IP, 1R, 1H, 3BB

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