Reggie McClain dazzles on hill as Missouri bests No. 6 South Carolina
COLUMBIA, Mo. -- Missouri improved to 17-5 and 4-0 in the SEC as it defeated No. 6 South Carolina 3-2 on Friday night at Taylor Stadium. The Tigers have now won seven of their past eight games and the win against the sixth-ranked Gamecocks marks Mizzou's first win against a top-10 team since March 16, 2013, when the Tigers defeated the same Gamecocks 4-0. The win is Mizzou's sixth one-run win this season.
Junior Reggie McClain tossed 8.1 innings, scattering just five hits while allowing two earned runs with three strikeouts and a walk, earning his fourth win of the season. He lowered his opponent batting average to .189 and continues to lead the SEC in innings pitched at 46.2. At one point, McClain retired 12 consecutive Gamecock batters. Junior closer Breckin Williams relieved McClain in the ninth and was lights out, picking up his team-leading sixth save by getting the game's final two outs with a Gamecock in scoring position.
The bulk of the offense came on a two-run single by freshman Trey Harris in the second inning, who moved his RBI total to seven in just four SEC games. The game-winning run was scored on a two-out single by junior Zach Lavy in the seventh inning.
South Carolina's Will Crowe took the loss, his second of the season, as the Gamecocks drop to 17-5 and 3-1 in SEC play.
The Gamecocks got on the board in the top of the first inning, using a double by Max Sckrock and an RBI single back up the middle from three-hole hitter Kyle Martin to open a 1-0 lead. McClain got a big 5-4-3 double play to get out of the first inning.
After Mizzou went 1-2-3 in the first, McClain came back out and seemed to settle in, picking up a pair of strikeouts in a perfect frame, needing just 15 pitches to do so. The offense came back out in the second and gave McClain some run support. After the Tigers loaded the bases with no outs, Harris poked a single through the left side to drive in a pair of runs, giving Mizzou a 2-1 lead.
McClain continued to mow through the Gamecock order as he retired 12 in a row before a one-out triple by Jordan Gore broke that streak. Gore was then singled home on an RBI hit by DC Arendas to tie the game. It was Arendas' first RBI this season.
Things stayed that way until the bottom of the seventh when Mizzou took advantage of a big error by left fielder Max Schrock on a ball that was blistered by Brett Bond. It caromed off of the glove of Schrock and to the wall, putting runners on second and third with no outs. Crowe and the Gamecocks nearly pitched out of a jam after a strikeout and fielder's choice, but Lavy delivered with a huge two-out hit to give the Tigers a lead, scoring Bond from second.
Mizzou is now 4-0 in SEC play for the first time in history and has won four consecutive games in SEC play for the first time as well.