June 18, 2002
By DOUG ALDEN
AP Sports Writer
OMAHA, Neb. – Steve Thomas and Justin Harris hit home runs and South Carolina eliminated Georgia Tech 9-5 on Tuesday at the College World Series.
The Gamecocks (55-17) avenged an 11-0 loss to the Yellow Jackets in the opening round and set up another game against state rival Clemson.
The Tigers and Gamecocks will play for the fifth time this season Wednesday night. Clemson is unbeaten in the CWS and needs just one win to advance to Saturday’s championship, while South Carolina would need to win Wednesday and again on Friday. Clemson was 3-1 against South Carolina this season.
Landon Powell and Drew Meyer each drove in two runs and Aaron Rawl pitched a complete game after struggling in a brief relief appearance against Tech in the CWS opener.
Rawl (7-1), who allowed three runs on two hits in one-third of an inning in the opener, allowed 14 hits, 12 of them singles.
The Yellow Jackets didn’t have an extra-base hit until Jeremy Slayden’s two-run homer in the eighth cut the lead to 9-4.
The Yellow Jackets were in the elimination round after a 9-7 loss to Clemson on Sunday, with the Tigers scoring eight runs in the second inning. On Tuesday, it was South Carolina’s four-run fourth that forced Tech to try to rally.
Powell broke a 1-1 tie in the fourth with a two-run single, then Meyer added an RBI single with two outs and scored on a throwing error by Boggs at third.
Brian Burks (10-7) was lifted after Boggs’ error. He pitched 3 2/3 innings, allowing five runs on five hits and two errors.
Thomas hit his 12th homer of the season in the seventh and the Gamecocks pulled away with three more in the eighth, including Harris’ homer to left that made it 9-2.
Harris was was suspended for the opener after his arrest on disorderly conduct and public drunkenness charges following a win over Miami in the super regionals.