COLUMBIA, S.C. — On Friday night at Founders Park, in their first home game in SEC play, South Carolina lost to Alabama, 4-2.
South Carolina drew first blood in the first inning when Alex Destino extended his hitting streak to six games on an RBI single that scored T.J. Hopkins, who went 2 for 4. Chris Cullen pushed the lead to 2-0 after roping a single over the head of Alabama pitcher Jake Walters.
The junior righty limited the Gamecock damage though, retiring three straight batters with the bases loaded, to get out of the inning.
It proved to be the difference as the Gamecocks dropped to 15-6 on the season (3-1 SEC).
With Walters on the mound, South Carolina managed to get just 1 more hit. He outworked Gamecock righthander Adam Hill (1-3), who scattered 8 hits over 6 innings of work and set a season-high with 9 strikeouts.
Alabama’s first homer off Hill was a leadoff shot in the third from Cody Henry, who went 2 for 3. An inning later, Chandler Taylor sent his 2-run bomb over the fence in right.
The Tide (12-10, 1-3 SEC) tacked on an insurance run in the ninth, extending their lead to 4-2.
First-pitch for Game 2 is set for 4 p.m. Saturday.