COLUMBIA, SC Feb. 24, 2013 – Colby Holmes, Forrest Koumas and Josh Knab combined for the first no-hitter by a Gamecock baseball team since March 26, 1975 as fifth ranked South Carolina exploded for nine runs in the bottom of the fifth inning on the way to a 14-1 win over Albany in game one of a doubleheader at Carolina Stadium. The no-hitter is the seventh in school history and the first combined no-hitter as well. The final game of the doubleheader is scheduled for 3:20 p.m.
Holmes was in control most of the afternoon with six innings allowing just one walk and three strikeouts. The one run for Albany came in the fourth inning after a leadoff walk, a throwing error and a sacrifice fly. After Holmes’ stint, Koumas came on for two hitless innings with just three walks and a strikeout. Josh Knab closed out the victory with a perfect inning of relief to seal the no-hitter for Carolina.
Trailing 1-0 entering the bottom of the fifth, the Gamecocks pounded out eight hits and scored nine times to go ahead by eight runs. The nine-run bottom of the fifth was the most runs by a Gamecock team in an inning since Carolina scored 10 on March 9, 2010 in the bottom of the third in a 12-4 win over Valparaiso. The fifth inning opened with a solo home run by Chase Vergason, his first of the season and second of his career in a Gamecock uniform. Max Schrock gave the Gamecocks its first lead with a two-run single with the bases loaded. Joey Pankake followed with a RBI groundout. A RBI single off the bat of LB Dantzler gave Carolina a 5-1 lead. With two outs and Dantzler on second base, the Gamecocks kept it going as Connor Bright delivered with a RBI single, followed by a base hit by Vergason and a RBI base hit courtesy of Dante Rosenberg. Saiko completed the scoring with a two-run single scoring Vergason and Rosenberg.
South Carolina added two runs in the sixth inning on a two-run double from Vergason. The Gamecocks made it 14-1 in the eighth inning on a three-run homer by Dantzler. In the first two games of the series, Dantzler has a pair of homers and nine RBI.
South Carolina finished with 15 hits in the contest. Vergason went 3-for-4 with two runs and three RBI, English went 3-for-4 with two runs, Dantzler was 2-for-4 with three runs and four RBI and Schrock went 2-for-5 with two runs and two RBI. All nine Gamecock starters reached base at least once with eight of nine tallying at least one hit.
A leadoff walk and a two-base throwing error led to the first run of the game for Albany in the top of the fourth inning. Nolan Gaige opened the frame with a walk and advanced to third base on a throwing error by Gamecock third baseman Chase Vergason off a grounder off the bat of Gorden Madej. With one out and a 0-1 count, Josh Nethaway lifted a sac fly to right-center scoring Gaige.
South Carolina’s last no-hitter came on March 26, 1975 when Ray Lavigne hurled a no-no in an 8-0 victory vs. George Mason at Sarge Frye Field.