BUIES CREEK, N.C. - Jana Matthews connected on a pair of home runs and Marci Christian tied the Buccaneers' single season home run mark in the first game as Charleston Southern opened up the Big South weekend series against Campbell with a split on Friday afternoon, winning the first game 5-4, while falling 12-4 in the nightcap.
Charleston Southern moves to 10-34, 3-13 in Big South action with the split, while Campbell advances to 27-16, 11-4 in conference play.
The teams finish off the weekend series tomorrow afternoon at Amanda Littlejohn Stadium, with first pitch slated for noon.
Game One: Charleston Southern 5, Campbell 4 (Box Score)
Marci Christian tied the Bucs' single season home run record with a blast in the fifth inning and Jana Matthews came through with a clutch two-run home run in the top of the seventh as Charleston Southern held off a late Campbell rally in picking up the 5-4 victory over the Camels in the first game of the weekend series.
Matthews continues to have the hot bat at the plate for the Bucs, going 2-for-2 from the plate with a pair of RBIs in the victory, marking her fifth consecutive game with a hit and third game in the span in which she's recorded at least two. Her two-run home run cleared the left centerfield fence, scoring Stephanie Sbardella to give CSU the 5-2 lead heading into the bottom of the seventh.
The Camels made the game interesting, rallying against CSU starter Jennifer Giles (6-23) in the bottom of the seventh as Maggie Christopher drew a walk to open the inning, while Stephanie Jones followed with a two-run blast to left field, cutting the Bucs lead down to 5-4. Campbell put two more runners on base in the inning as Courtney Klinger and Brittany Bruce were both hit by pitches to give the Camels two on with two out, but Giles was able to close out her 20th complete game of the season in cleaning fielding Olivia Scarborough's grounder and getting the out at first to end the game.
Giles went the distance in the contest, allowing seven hits and four runs, while striking out two in picking up her sixth win of the season. The sophomore right-hander also has all three of CSU's Big South Conference wins in 2013.
Courtney Roberts (14-6) suffered the loss for the Camels in the contest, starting the game and going 4.1 innings, allowing six hits while striking out three. Julia Callicutt surrendered Matthews' home run in closing out the final 2.2 innings in relief.
Linzy Rother also added two hits for the Bucs offense in the game, while Camise Patterson led all Camels' bats with two hits, while Christopher scored two runs.
Charleston Southern opened the scoring in the top of the second inning as Hayes Holdsworth led off the inning with a double to centerfield. A sacrifice bunt by Melanie Stickney advanced her over to third, where she scored two batters later on Ari Tedesco's single to left field for the first run of the game.
The Bucs added to their lead in the top of the third as Rother connected on the RBI single in the inning, scoring Sbardella from second base with two outs to put CSU ahead, 2-0.
The Camels took one back in the bottom half of the inning as Erin Nesbitt drove in Christopher with a two-out single to left centerfield to put the Camels on the scoreboard.
Christian extended the Bucs lead in the top of the fifth, drilling her 12th home run of the season with one out to put CSU ahead, 3-1. Christian's blast ties her for the CSU single season home run record of 12, set by Matthews back in 2010.
Campbell plated one run in the bottom of the sixth to pull back within one as Raven Lee connected on a leadoff home run to left field, narrowing the lead down to 3-2, paving way for the pivotal seventh inning.
Game Two: Campbell 12, Charleston Southern 4 (6 inn.) (Box Score)
Jana Matthews ran her hitting streak to six games and connected on her second home run of the evening against visiting Campbell on Saturday afternoon, but the Camels offense exploded with eight runs in the bottom of the fifth as CU salvaged a split on Friday afternoon at Amanda Littlejohn Stadium with the 12-4 victory.
Matthews connected on her eighth home run of the season and 33rd of her career in the top of the first inning to put the Bucs ahead early. Campbell rallied back to take the lead for good in the bottom of the fifth with Brittany Bruce connected on the back-breaking bases loaded triple to left centerfield to pace the Camels to the win.
Jennifer Giles (6-24) suffered the loss, going 2.0 innings, allowing seven runs (four earned) in her second action of the day. Julia Callicutt (6-1) picked up the win for the Camels, throwing two innings of one-hit relief, while striking out three in her sixth win of the season.
Matthews opened the scoring in the top of the first, connecting on a solo home run with two outs in the frame, driving the ball over the left field fence to put the Bucs ahead early.
The Camels rallied back with two runs in the bottom of the second to take their first lead of the game. A CSU throwing error led to both runs crossing the plate as Maggie Christopher and Sarah Forgacs both scored on Bruce's bunt single as Giles throw went wide of first base.
Charleston Southern rallied and plated three runs of their own in the top of the third to retake the lead. Marci Christian opened the scoring, crossing the plate on a wild pitch. Stephanie Sbardella scored one batter later, touching home as Rother picked up the stolen base to put the Bucs ahead, 3-2. Hayes Holdsworth connected on an RBI single to close out the scoring in the inning, driving in Rother to cap the Bucs' offense.
The Camels broke the game open in the bottom of the fifth, scoring eight runs to take a commanding 10-4 lead.
Courtney Klinger opened the scoring with a one-out solo home run and Raven Lee and Camise Patterson connected on back-to-back doubles to knot the game up at 4-4. Christopher gave the Camels the lead for good with a single to right centerfield, scoring Patterson and Bruce broke the game open with her bases-clearing triple to put the Camels ahead, 9-4. Ericka Nesbitt closed out the scoring with a base hit down the left field line, scoring Stephanie Jones.
The Bucs put two runners on in the top of the sixth as Natalie Yonan was hit by a pitch and Ari Tedesco drew a walk with two outs. However, the Bucs offense stalled on Sbardella's single as Tedesco was thrown out trying to take third on the play, ending the CSU threat.
Campbell closed out the contest in the bottom half of the inning as Patterson followed Lee's walk with a two-run walk-off home run.