The Official Website of the Southeastern Conference
The Official Website of the Southeastern Conference

Gamecocks beat Bulldogs 3-1, advance to semis

1513 days ago
South Carolina Athletics
Photo: Missouri Athletics

COLUMBIA, Mo. -- No. 3 seed South Carolina softball used a two-run third inning and an Alyssa Kumiyama home run in the fourth to advance to the semifinals of the SEC Softball Tournament with a 3-1 win over No. 11 seed Mississippi State on Thursday at Mizzou Softball Stadium.

The win is Carolina's first in the SEC Tournament since 2016 and 19th overall, while the Gamecocks advance to the semifinal round for the first time since 2002.

Cayla Drotar (20-5) earned the win in the circle, throwing six scoreless innings to start the tournament to lead the Gamecocks to victory.

South Carolina (44-13) held tough the first two innings against Mississippi State's Holly Ward (15-8) and patiently waited for its time to strike as the defense and Drotar posted a zero through first two innings.

Carolina opened the scoring in the bottom of the third with two runs, as Kenzi Maguire reached on a bases-loaded fielder's choice to score Jana Johns and make it 1-0 Gamecocks. Drotar continued the scoring a few batters later as she fouled out to the first baseman in foul ground, allowing Krystan White to score from third and make it 2-0 Carolina.

The scoring continued in the fourth as Kumiyama blasted a ball off the camera tower in right to extend the Gamecock lead to 3-0 over Mississippi State.

The Bulldogs attempted a comeback effort in the seventh with a run but it wasn't enough as the Gamecocks prevailed for the 3-1 win.

Carolina finished the day with four hits from four different batters.

UP NEXT: The Gamecocks will face No. 7 seed Arkansas Friday in the semifinals. First pitch is scheduled for 3 pm ET on ESPNU.