COLUMBIA - It didn't end the way South Carolina hoped, but the program still got several solid performances from its player during the NCAA Columbia Regional this past weekend.
Five Gamecocks made the all-regional team. The same number of Maryland players were selected to the team, despite the Terrapins winning both games against USC at Carolina Stadium.
Here's a look at the all-regional team, including a look at my ballot.
Catcher - Kevin Martir, So., Maryland
My vote: Kevin Martir
Analysis: Entering the weekend, perhaps the safest bet was that South Carolina junior Grayson Greiner would be the best catcher - if not outright player - in the regional. He wasn't, on either accounts. Martir batted ninth in the Terrapins lineup, so he wasn't exactly counted upon to drive Maryland's offense. Even still, his .272 batting average led all catchers. The work Martir did behind the plate set him apart. Martir was a big reason Maryland pitchers had success against South Carolina's lineup, especially Sunday night.
First base - LaMonte Wade Jr., So., Maryland; Kyle Martin, Jr., South Carolina
My vote: Kyle Martin
Analysis: When I saw there was a tie between Martin and Wade, I thought it was only fitting. Both first basemen were vital to their teams. My vote went to Martin because I thought he had a slightly better individual showing. Martin batted .437 and led the regional with five RBIs, including the Gamecocks lone RBI in their elimination game. Wade wasn't quite as good statistically - a .272 batting average and two RBIs - but he was a big part of Maryland's success.
Second base - DC Arendas, So., South Carolina
My vote: DC Arendas
Analysis: Talk about your breakout performances. Maryland freshman Brandon Lowe was considered the best second baseman entering the regional, but Arendas outplayed Lowe this weekend. The Gamecocks sophomore batted .300 - compared to Lowe's .250 - and scored three runs with three RBIs.
Third base - Jose Cuas, So., Maryland
My vote: Jose Cuas
Analysis: South Carolina fans probably know Cuas as the Maryland player who vowed he wouldn't be intimidated playing the Gamecocks at Carolina Stadium. His words drew ire from some fans, but Cuas backed it up on the field. Cuas led all third baseman with a .416 batting average and added a run and RBI. His play especially stood out in comparison with South Carolina junior Joey Pankake, who had a mostly miserable tournament at the plate and in the field.
Shortstop - Tyler Urps, Sr., Old Dominion
My vote: Tyler Urps
Analysis: Old Dominion was the first team eliminated this weekend, but it was no fault of its senior shortstop. Another No. 9 hitter on this list, Urps led the regional with a .667 batting average (4-for-6) in two games. He added two RBIs and was the lone Monarchs player on this list.
Outfield - Charlie White, Jr., Maryland; Matt Nadolski, Jr., Campbell; Tanner English, Jr., South Carolina
My vote: Charlie White, Matt Nadolski, Tanner English
Analysis: Clearly, these were the three best outfielders in the tournament. White batted .545 with four runs and two RBIs. Nadolski batted .294 and is Campbell's lone representative on the list. English, the third No. 9 hitter on this list, batted .333 with three runs and an RBI.
DH/Utility - Max Schrock, So., South Carolina
My vote: Max Schrock
Analysis: Where do you even begin with Max Schrock? By Sunday night, the sophomore second baseman had nothing left. With a stress fracture in his back, he could barely walk. It was painful to watch. Schrock was far from healthy this weekend, but he batted .500, led the regional with eight hits, was the only player with double-digit bases (10), drove in two RBIs and scored three runs. He'll be a superstar next year, if he stays healthy.
Pitchers - Wil Crowe, Fr., South Carolina; Mike Shawaryn, Fr., Maryland
My vote: Wil Crowe and Mike Shawaryn
Analysis: In a regional that was dominated by pitching, two freshmen stood above the rest. Crowe's complete game shutout against Campbell on Sunday afternoon preserved South Carolina's bullpen and was the only reason it even had a chance to beat Maryland twice in 24 hours. Shawaryn, with a gritty performance, snapped South Carolina's 28-game home postseason winning streak. His start - three runs on five hits in 6 1/3 innings pitched - changed the momentum of this regional.
MOP - Charlie White
My vote: Mike Shawaryn
Analysis: Let's be honest. Max Schrock was the best, most inspiring player on the field this weekend. It was incredible to watch him constantly slug out hits even when it hurt every time he swung the bat. Regardless, the most outstanding player must come from the winning team. At least, that's how I always vote. I thought, with what Shawaryn did in a hostile environment Saturday night, the Terps freshman had the singular best performance in the regional. But take nothing away from White. The junior center fielder dazzled and drew praise from South Carolina coach Chad Holbrook, sparking Maryland's lineup from the leadoff position.
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