USC Head Coach Chad Holbrook (left, pointing) is ready for his first season leading the team.
Columbia, SC (AP) --- Kyle Martin broke a 3-3 tie with an RBI single as part of South Carolina's four-run eighth inning Friday night and the Gamecocks beat Saint Louis 7-3, their 25th straight NCAA tournament victory at home.
South Carolina (40-19) led 3-0 through six until the Billikens (41-20) tied things with a two-run eighth, helped by third baseman Chase Verguson's high throw past first. Like so often during their NCAA run, though, the Gamecocks came back to continue a streak that began with a super regional win over Miami in 2002.
The key hit was Martin's bouncer that first baseman Mike Vigliarolo could not reach, bringing home Joey Pankake and moving South Carolina in front for good.
The Gamecocks next face Liberty on Saturday in a winner's bracket game. The Flames surprised Clemson 8-3 earlier.
Atlantic 10 tournament champion Saint Louis will take on the Tigers in an elimination game Saturday.