Columbia, S.C. - A three-run sixth inning rally was too much to overcome for No. 7 Vanderbilt at South Carolina in a 3-2 loss on Saturday at Carolina Stadium.
The Commodores (29-12, 12-6) took a 2-0 lead into the bottom of the sixth inning when VU starter John Kilichowski hit DC Arendas to open the inning. The Gamecocks (25-17, 8-10) quickly made Kilichowski pay with a RBI-triple off the bat of Max Schrock to cut the Vandy lead in half. Kilichowski issued a four-pitch walk to Kyle Martin to put runners on the corners with no outs and end his afternoon. Kyle Wright struck out the first batter he faced but a single up the middle by Alex Destino scored the tying run. Wright then set up the Dores to get out of the inning with the game tiede with another strikeout but Logan Koch's seeing-eye single found the hole between shortstop and third to score Martin from second base to cap the rally and give South Carolina their first lead of the afternoon.
Vanderbilt bounced back in the seventh inning and had runners on first and second but Gamecocks' closer Taylor Widender struck out the next two Dores to end the threat and begin a string of eight straight retired to finish off the game.
Jeren Kendall's second career home run put the Dores on the board early with his solo shot to right field in the second inning. Kendall again was in the mix for the team's second run when he doubled to lead off the fourth, eventually coming around to score on a wild pitch. Rhett Wiseman added two hits and two walks in the loss.
Kilichowski took the loss for the Commodores allowing three runs on four hits over five-plus innings. The lefty walked two in his second loss of the season. Wright, Jordan Sheffield and Philip Pfeifer kept the Commodores in the bullpen with three innings of scoreless relief.
Cody Mincey earned the win out of the bullpen for South Carolina, turning in three no-hit innings. Widener recorded the final eight outs to notch his ninth save.
Vanderbilt returns to action Tuesday night at Hawkins Field against Middle Tennessee State at 6:30 p.m. on SEC Network+.