Rufus Hurdle, Jr. Action
Claflin 2-15, 0-13 PBC
 USC Aiken 13-18, 7-9 PBC
Score By Periods
USC Aiken720600X15121


AIKEN, SC (April 2, 2022) – The Claflin Panthers (2-15, 0-13 PBC) showed some strong play late in a 15-4 road loss to the USC-Aiken Pacers (13-18, 7-9 PBC), Friday evening. After falling into an early deficit, the Panthers showed some great potential late in the game. Unfortunately, it was not quite enough to pull out the win in the weekend series opener.

AS a team, the Panthers had a solid day at the plate, scoring four runs on five hits. Junior right fielder Rufus Hurdle, Jr. led the way for the team, going two-for-three at the plate with a double, an RBI, and a run scored. Sophomore outfielder Kobe Miller added a one-for-two performance at the plate with an RBI and a run scored. Junior second base Da’Avion Sumpter added an RBI of his own.

The Panthers wasted little time getting on the scoreboard, but a mid-game drought proved to be costly for the Panthers. The team as able to get some late runs, but they were not enough in the loss. Hurdle, Jr. opened the game with a lead-off single and he later scored on an RBI groundout by Sumpter. After falling behind, 15-1, the Panthers added two sixth inning runs as Hurdle, Jr. hit an RBI double that scored freshman Joshua Cooper. Miller added an RBI sacrifice fly that drove in Hurdle, Jr. and cut the Panthers’ deficit down to 12 runs, 15-3 heading into the seventh inning. The Panthers added another run when junior third base Cameron Mitchem hit an RBI single to score fellow junior first base Malik Sadler. The run ended the Panthers’ scoring efforts and capped the 15-4 Claflin loss.

Claflin junior Kyle Hawkins (1-6) started the game and took the pitching loss. He totaled three groundouts on the mound. Graduate Talmon “T.J.” Hubbard came in for two innings before sophomore Christopher Holley carried the remaining three innings of the game. Hubbard finished the game with three strikeouts. Holley added a strikeout of his own.

With the loss, the Panthers fall to 2-15 overall and 0-13 in Peach Belt Conference (PBC) play. The two teams will close out the weekend series with a doubleheader tomorrow. For more information on Claflin University baseball, contact the Claflin University Office of Athletic Media Relations at (803) 535-5548 or log on to