Tigers Open Series Thursday vs. Gamecocks

Game 1 Starts at 6:30 p.m. CT Thursday at "The Box"

by Bill Franques | Sr. Associate Communications Director
Tickets Live Audio (6 p.m. CT) Live Stats Watch (ESPNU) +0
Tigers Open Series Thursday vs. Gamecocks

No. 5 South Carolina Gamecocks (22-9, 8-4) at LSU Fighting Tigers (20-12, 3-9)

DATES/TIMES
•    Thursday, April 15 @ 6:30 p.m. CT
•    Friday, April 16 @ 7 p.m. CT
•    Saturday, April 17 @ 2 p.m. CT
STADIUM
•    Alex Box Stadium, Skip Bertman Field in Baton Rouge, La.
RADIO
•    LSU Sports Radio Network affiliates
•    Live audio at www.LSUsports.net/live; Live stats at www.LSUstats.com 
TV/ONLINE
•    Thursday’s game will be televised by ESPNU
•    All 3 games may be viewed on SEC Network +, accessible at Watch ESPN.com and the Watch ESPN app

SERIES RECORD VS. SOUTH CAROLINA
LSU leads the overall series with South Carolina, 39-29-1; the Tigers and Gamecocks first met on the diamond in 1992. LSU has won 17 of its past 26 games and five of its past seven SEC regular-season series versus South Carolina. This week’s series in Baton Rouge marks the first meeting between the schools since May 21, 2019, when the Tigers defeated the Gamecocks, 8-6, in the first round of the SEC Tournament in Hoover, Ala. This week’s series marks the first regular-season meeting between the teams since April 20-22, 2018, when the Gamecocks swept the Tigers in Columbia. This week’s series also marks South Carolina’s first visit to Baton Rouge since May 5-7, 2017, when the Tigers won two of three games over the Gamecocks. 

PITCHING MATCHUPS
Game 1
LSU – Jr. RH Landon Marceaux (3-3, 1.89 ERA, 47.2 IP, 11 BB, 55 SO)
SC – Jr. RH Thomas Farr (2-2, 3.25 ERA, 44.1 IP, 22 BB, 61 SO)
Game 2
LSU – Jr. RH AJ Labas (2-0, 3.43 ERA, 44.2 IP, 8 BB, 46 SO)
SC – Sr. RH Brannon Jordan (4-2, 3.02 ERA, 41.2 IP, 24 BB, 66 SO)
Game 3
LSU – TBA
SC – Fr. RH Will Sanders (5-1, 2.51 ERA, 32.1 IP, 5 BB, 36 SO)

QUOTING PAUL MAINIERI
“South Carolina has some real power arms; you look at the video and you realize how their pitchers have the numbers that they have. Their top two starters both have 60+ strikeouts, and they’re mid-90s (mph) guys. And, they have relievers out of their bullpen that throw exceptionally hard. Offensively, they have a lot of power throughout their lineup. It’s a team built with power arms and power bats. That’s what we’re in store for, a team that will try to outslug you and try to strike a lot of your batters out, so we have to be prepared for that challenge.”

ABOUT THE TIGERS
•    LSU is No. 24 in this week’s official NCAA RPI ratings, and the Tigers are No. 5 in strength of schedule.
•    LSU is No. 3 in the nation in home runs with 52 on the year; Arkansas leads the nation with 55, and Old Dominion is No. 2 with 54.
•    LSU won three of its four games last week, including an SEC series victory at Kentucky over the weekend … the Tigers batted .343 in last week’s four games with 41 runs on 49 hits, including six doubles, three triples and six homers.
•    Freshman shortstop Jordan Thompson was named SEC Co-Freshman of the Week on Monday after he batted .600 (9-for-15) with one triple, three RBI and six runs scored in four games last week, helping lead LSU to three victories … in the Tigers’ series win at Kentucky, Thompson hit .667 (8-for-12) with one triple, two RBI and three runs scored … Thompson also walked once in the series and was hit by a pitch, posting an on-base percentage of .714 in 14 plate appearances … Thompson’s two-out RBI single in the top of the ninth inning Saturday at Kentucky gave LSU a vital insurance run in the Tigers’ 8-6 win. 
•    LSU ace Landon Marceaux pitched brilliantly in the Tigers’ Game 1 win at Kentucky Friday, limiting the Wildcats to two runs – one earned – in 7.1 innings with seven hits, no walks and eight strikeouts … Marceaux retired 12 of the first 13 batters he faced, and he did not allow a Kentucky baserunner to advance beyond first base until the sixth inning … Marceaux defeated a Kentucky team that was No. 3 in the SEC in cumulative batting average entering Friday’s game … he lowered his cumulative ERA this season to 1.89.
•    Designated hitter Cade Beloso batted .545 (6-for-11) in four games last week with one double, seven RBI and three runs scored … in LSU’s series victory at Kentucky, Beloso batted .500 (5-for-10) with one double, seven RBI and two runs scored … he also drew a walk and was twice hit by a pitch, posting a .571 on-base percentage for the series … in LSU’s 15-2 win over UK on Friday night, Beloso collected four RBI with a pair of two-run singles … he contributed a sacrifice fly and an RBI single in Saturday’s LSU win, and he added another run-scoring single in Sunday’s game … Beloso raised his batting average 38 points over the course of last week’s four games, from .202 to .240.
•    Junior right-hander AJ Labas delivered a quality start for the Tigers on Saturday, defeating Kentucky and clinching a series win … Labas limited the Wildcats to three runs on six hits in six innings with one walk and six strikeouts, firing 98 pitches.
•    Third baseman Cade Doughty batted .444 (8-for-18) and collected two doubles and five RBI last week … first baseman Tre’ Morgan registered a double, two homers, six RBI and three runs scored, and leftfielder Gavin Dugas lined his first career triple, blasted two homers, drove in four runs and scored five times.

ABOUT THE GAMECOCKS
•    South Carolina is No. 13 in the SEC in batting average (.269), but the Gamecocks are third in the league in home runs (50), trailing only Arkansas (55) and LSU (52).
•    The South Carolina pitching staff is No. 3 in the SEC with a 3.36 cumulative ERA, and the Gamecocks record 12.72 strikeouts per nine inning, which is second in the league.
•    The Gamecocks are led at the plate by infielder Wes Clarke, who has an SEC-high 15 homers and 34 RBI … outfielder Brady Allen has 10 doubles, one triple, nine homers and 28 RBI, and outfielder Andrew Eyster has seven doubles, one triple, seven homers and 25 RBI.
•    Right-hander Brannon Jordan is No. 5 in the SEC in strikeouts with 66; right-hander Will Sanders is No. 6 in the league in ERA (2.51).