Winthrop University

Winthrop baseball faces South Carolina, The Citadel in midweek action

The Winthrop baseball team will begin a two-game road slate with No. 7 South Carolina on Tuesday at 7 p.m., followed by The Citadel on Wednesday at 5 p.m.

The Eagles (13-5) are off to their best start of a season since 2006, when they made the NCAA tournament. The pitching staff continues to be a reliable force for the Eagles, with all 14 pitchers who have made appearances this season combining for an ERA of 2.80. Southpaw Josh Strong leads the team with a 2-0 record and an ERA of 1.32. Offensively, Winthrop batters have scored 97 runs on 156 hits. The Eagles have four hitters hitting above .300, led by Anthony Paulsen who is batting .364 with 24 hits, eight doubles and 11 RBIs.

Eagles’ head coach Tom Riginos is excited at the opportunity to play one the nation’s best programs.

“Playing South Carolina will be a great challenge,” he said, “but it will be a great experience for our guys.”

The Gamecocks (17-3) are currently on a 10-game winning streak. South Carolina is also third in the country in shutouts, posting four this year. South Carolina’s pitchers have a combined ERA of 2.20 while allowing just 57 runs.

Seniors Elliot Caldwell and Kyle Martin have combined for a .386 batting average, and have 48 of the Gamecocks’ 166 hits. Freshman Alex Destino has driven home 20 runs, just two shy of Martin’s team high 22, with four home runs. South Carolina head coach Chad Holbrook is in his third year at the helm after serving four seasons as the associate head coach. In his time, he has compiled a record of 104-41.