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South Carolina announces junior Brett Kerry to start

Junior righthander moved from the pen to the rotation late in the season for the Gamecocks.

NCAA BASEBALL: JUN 01 South Carolina v Ohio State Photo by Greg Thompson/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Though Brannon Jordan had started the Friday night games for the regular season for the South Carolina Gamecocks, they announced on Wednesday that instead they would turn to Junior righthander Brett Kerry as the starter vs the Virginia Cavaliers on Friday.

Kerry featured prominently out of the bullpen for much of the season for the Gamecocks appearing in fourteen games out of the pen. Late in the season, after a stellar outing against Mississippi State in which he held the Top 15 team to just one run on four hits over six innings, Kerry was moved into a starting role and has since thrived.

In the two starts he has for the Gamecocks, Kerry has a 1.23 ERA and a .688 WHIP thanks in large part to zero walks and 18 strikeouts over 16 innings. In his first start of the season against Kentucky in mid-May, Kerry threw a four hit, complete game shutout while striking out ten. He followed it up the next week against the No. 3 overall seed in this year’s NCAA Tournament, Tennessee Volunteers to just two runs over seven innings while striking out 8.

On the season, Kerry features a 1.90 ERA and has struck out 83 while only walking 9 in 52 innings pitched, but has allowed hitters to bat .224. The Cavaliers could have their hands full against Kerry but will also know he will be around the plate given his lack of walks on the season. They are no strangers to taking it to aces either having given Notre Dame’s ace, John Bertrand, his shortest start of he season just last week in the ACC Tournament.

Virginia will obviously counter with their All-American, Andrew Abbott, so the noon game could feature the best pitching matchup in the country on Friday.