COLUMBIA, S.C. -- Trailing by five runs entering the bottom of the fifth inning, 12th ranked South Carolina scored seven unanswered runs capped by a three-run homer by John Jones in the bottom of the eighth inning as the Gamecocks defeated Arkansas 8-6 on Sunday afternoon to sweep a three-game SEC series. The Gamecocks are 20-2 and 3-0 in league play with Arkansas dropping to 15-6 and 0-3 in the SEC.
Jones, who hit a two-run homer in Saturday's victory over the Razorbacks, kept his hot bat going as he went 3-for-5 with two runs and five RBI to lead the Gamecocks at the plate. Down 6-1 going into the bottom of the fifth, Jones would kickstart the rally in the bottom of the fifth with a two-out RBI single. Dom Thompson-Williams added a two-run triple as well to cut the deficit to a pair of runs. South Carolina cut the deficit to 6-5 in the sixth inning with Jones again coming through with a RBI double. It remained that way until the bottom of the eighth. Gene Cone singled with one out and LT Tolbert walked to set the stage for Jones. On Zach Jackson's 2-2 pitch, Jones launched his team-leading sixth home run of the season over the wall in right-center to give the Gamecocks a two-run lead. Junior left-hander Josh Reagan pitched a perfect ninth to seal the win.
Reagan earned the win with 2.1 scoreless innings of relief. He is now 1-0 on the year. Jackson suffered the loss for Arkansas and is now 1-2 for the season. He allowed four runs on three hits in 2.2 innings with five walks and two strikeouts.
South Carolina went ahead 1-0 in the bottom of the second inning. Thompson-Williams reached base on an error that was followed up by a base hit from Jonah Bride. Thompson-Williams would then score on Chris Cullen's RBI single up the middle.
Arkansas answered with three runs with two outs in the top of the third inning to take a 3-1 lead. Cody Scroggins reached with a two-out single to right-center. After he stole second base and advanced on a throwing error by catcher Chris Cullen, the Razorbacks would put runners on the corners as Darien Simms drew a walk. The bases were then loaded as Clark Eagan reached on a hit by pitch. Scroggins scored on a wild pitch and Carson Shaddy singled to score Simms and Eagan.
The Razorbacks increased the lead to 6-1 in the fourth inning. Rick Nomura led off with a double and Cullen Gassaway singled to give Arkansas runners on the corners with no outs. After a walk to Chad Spanberger loaded the bases, Alex Gosser lifted a sac fly to left-center to score Nomura. A throwing error and another single by Clark Eagan would score two more runs and give Arkansas a five-run cushion.
South Carolina heads on the road for a three-game series at Ole Miss. The series opener is set for Thursday, Mar. 24 at 7:30 p.m. ET