Colie Bowers, Alex Destino come up big in 4-3 win

COLUMBIA, S.C. – Colie Bowers is no stranger to having his number called in crucial moments for South Carolina baseball through the season’s first week. That was the case again for the senior reliever Friday night when he took the mound with two runners on in a tie game.

With the lead runner 90 feet away in the seventh inning, Bowers locked in on picking up starter Clarke Schmidt and keeping his team in a good position against Wright State.

“I knew I had to do whatever I could to not let that run cross,” Bowers said. “It was a tie game and Clarke threw phenomenal. I felt like the least I could do was salvage that for him and do my job, do my part.”

Bowers induced an 0-2 pop out and froze Wright State’s Adrian Marquez with a changeup to end the threat. Schmidt raced out of the dugout, celebrating frantically with the tie intact.

With Bowers’ mission accomplished, Alex Destino broke the tie in the bottom of the seventh with an RBI double to lift the Gamecocks (4-2) to a 4-3 series-opening win against Wright State.

“We are fortunate to win with the mistakes that we made,” South Carolina coach Chad Holbrook said. “But I’m also proud of the group for finding a way to win when it could have easily gone the other way.”

South Carolina seemed locked on cruising to a stress-free win behind some early timely hitting paired with dominant pitching from Schmidt for the second time this season. His teammates called his 11-strikeout outing…

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