South Carolina rolls to 10-5 win in Game 1 against Kentucky Wildcats

LEXINGTON, Ky. -- South Carolina spotted Kentucky a 3-0 lead in the first inning, but the No. 2 Gamecocks had more than enough firepower to make up for it Friday in the weekend series opener at Cliff Hagan Stadium.

The Gamecocks belted out 11 hits, including home runs by Alex Destino and LT Tolbert, en route to a 10-5 victory over the Wildcats. 

League-leading South Carolina (36-9, 16-5 SEC) was led by three hits from catcher Chris Cullen. Marcus Mooney and Jonah Bride each added two hits for the Gamecocks with Bride driving in two runs with a pair of doubles. Destino had four RBI, three of them coming on a fourth-inning homer that put his team ahead for the remainder of the game.

Right-hander Clarke Schmidt (9-1) was the beneficiary of the strong run support. He entered the game with a 1.99 ERA, but promptly yielded a three-run homer to UK's Riley Mahan in the first inning. From that point on, Schmidt settled into a rhythm and kept the Wildcats mostly in check. He finished with seven strikeouts and only one walk.

Zack Brown (2-9) started and took the loss for UK, allowing seven earned runs on 10 hits over 5.1 innings of work. The sloppy Cats were also hurt by seven walks, two hit batsmen, a pair of errors and the inability to turn a potential inning-ending double play prior to Destino's three-run homer. 

Kentucky (27-19, 11-11 SEC) wasted a decent offensive showing. Mahan was 3-for-4 with the three-run homer. Evan White followed with two hits while Zach Reks added a solo home run.

The series resumes on Saturday at 6:30 p.m. ET.

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