Presbyterian tops Bucs twice despite Christian's pair of home runs

Presbyterian tops Bucs twice despite Christian's pair of home runs

CLINTON, S.C. - Marci Christian homered twice highlighting Saturday afternoon for Charleston Southern as the Buccaneers fell twice on the road to Presbyterian, dropping game one, 8-7, and game two, 5-4.

The CSU senior slugger raised her 2015 season total to 21 on the year, connecting on a three-run shot in the first game and a solo shot in game two.

Presbyterian utilized home runs by Shelby Petik and Erin Ruff to take the first game of the series, while the Blue Hose pushed five runs across in the first two innings of game two and held off a late CSU comeback attempt.

The Bucs and Blue Hose are scheduled to close out the Big South Conference series tomorrow afternoon in Clinton, S.C., with first pitch scheduled for 1 p.m.

Game One: Presbyterian 8, Charleston Southern 7
Marci Christian connected on her 20th home run in the top of the second as Charleston Southern jumped out to the 6-1 lead after two innings, but a four-run third and back-to-back home runs by Shelby Petik and Erin Ruff in the bottom of the sixth led Presbyterian back as the Blue Hose took the first game of the doubleheader, 8-7.

Stevi Johnson connected on a two-run double in the top of the first inning, before Christian cleared the bases in the second to stake the Bucs to a five run lead in chasing PC starter Kensley Loudermelk. PC reliever Katie Brown (3-0) went the final 5.1 innings, hurling a three-hitter the rest of the way in taking the win.

Jennifer Giles (11-12) took the loss in the contest for the Bucs, going 3.1 innings in allowing six runs, while striking out one. Hayley Elkins went three innings in relief, allowing two runs while striking out two.

The Bucs jumped ahead early as Matsumoto reached on an error and stole second. Christian's single to left field advanced her to third and both runners came around on Johnson's two-run double. Georgi DeLio added a sacrifice fly later in the frame to put the Bucs ahead 3-0.

Jill McLean scored on a fielding error in the bottom of the frame to put PC on the board, but the Bucs came roaring back in the second as Christian capped a two-out rally by driving a three-run shot over the left centerfield fence to double the Bucs score.

PC narrowed the CSU lead down to 6-5 in the bottom of the third, sending 10 batters to the plate with Hope Rogers connecting on the bases-loaded double, driving in three. Erin Taylor followed with an RBI single for PC's final run in the frame.

Christian put the Bucs back ahead two with a sacrifice fly scoring Brook Richardson in the top of the fourth.

The 7-5 CSU lead stood until the sixth when Petik and Ruff went back-to-back against Elkins to tie the score up at 7-7.

After the Bucs went down 1-2-3 in the top of the seventh, Abby Allen drove in the game-winning run with a walk-off double to right centerfield, scoring Courtney Lawton to end the contest.

Game Two: Presbyterian 5, Charleston Southern 4
Charleston Southern's late rally fell just short as the Buccaneers were unable to overcome a four-run deficit in falling in the afternoon game of the Saturday doubleheader.

Christian connected on a solo home run in the top of the first and Stephanie Bergmann had a two-run double in the fifth for the Bucs as CSU fought their way back into the game against PC starter Sydney Seigler (4-9). The Bucs rally fell short though as Loudermelk closed out the contest going the final 1.2 innings in hitless relief for the Blue Hose in closing out the win.

Elkins (2-2) took the loss for the Bucs, allowing five runs over the first 1.2 innings before Giles came in to shut down the Blue Hose the rest of the way. Giles went the final 4.1 innings allowing just four runners on base in closing out the contest.

Christian connected on her 21st home run of the season in the top of the first inning to stake the Bucs to the 1-0 lead, but PC responded quickly with two runs in the first and three in the second in building a 5-1 lead.

Hope Rogers put the first two runs across with a single in the first, while Petik and Ruff had back-to-back RBI hits in the second to stake PC to the lead.

The Bucs rallied back in the fifth as Amanda Matsumoto's speed led to a throwing error on the two-out bunt attempt. Following a walk issued to Christian, Johnson brought in the first CSU run with a single to centerfield. Bergmann followed with a two-run double to right center to pull the Bucs back within one.

Lexie Vanada kept CSU in the mix with a double in the sixth, while Cierra Robinson stole second in the seventh to put runners in scoring position in both innings, but CSU was unable to push across the tying run in taking the loss. 

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