The 15th-ranked Georgia softball team dropped a 3-2 decision in 11 innings at #14 South Carolina Friday evening at Carolina Softball Stadium.
It was the longest game for Georgia (34-16, 7-12) since Apr. 27, 2012 when the Bulldogs played 15 innings, the school record, at LSU.
Sophomore Lauren Mathis worked the complete game in the circle, going 10 and a third innings, a new career-best. She fanned eight Gamecocks (35-12, 8-10) during her outing. Mathis threw 138 total pitches Friday evening.
The Bulldogs scattered six hits in the game, led by two-hit performances by freshman Lacey Fincher and junior Mahlena O’Neal. O’Neal also drove in one of Georgia’s two runs.
Alyssa Kumiyama hit a two-out, two-run home run in the first, her seventh home run of the season, to put the Gamecocks on the board, 2-0.
After giving up the two-run home run in the first, Mathis pitched nine-straight scoreless innings for Georgia.
In the top of the third with Ciara Bryan on first and two out, Alyssa DiCarlo singled to right. On the play, the right fielder bobbled the ball, allowing Bryan to score and DiCarlo to take second, cutting the Gamecock lead to one, 2-1.
Alysen Febrey and Fincher each drew one-out walks in the sixth inning. Febrey came in to score on a double down the left field line by O’Neal, knotting the game at two runs each.
The game was sent into extra innings, the second time for the Bulldogs in 2019.
In the bottom of the 11th, it was Kumiyama who hit a solo walk-off home run over the wall in left to end the affair and give the Gamecocks the series-opening win, 3-2.
The Bulldogs and Gamecocks return to action Saturday for a noon matinee in Columbia. Saturday’s contest will air nationally on ESPN 2.