CHARLESTON, S.C. - Syracuse outlasted Charleston Southern on Wednesday afternoon as the Buccaneers fell in extra innings to the visiting Orange, 3-1.
Lexie Vanada connected on her second home run of the season for the Bucs (12-14) in the bottom of the sixth inning to tie the game up at 1-1, but that was the only run CSU was able to push across in the loss to the Orange.
Syracuse (12-11) rallied in the top of the ninth inning with Corinne Ozanne and Hannah Dossett bringing in runs in their final at-bats to take the win over the Bucs. CSU was unable to rally against SU reliever Sydney O'Hara in the bottom half of the inning in the loss.
Hayley Elkins (6-9) went the distance for the Bucs in arguably her best start of the season. The sophomore right-hander struck out six batters over a three inning span in finishing with nine strikeouts in the contest. She recorded seven hits with three runs (one earned) in the loss.
O'Hara (1-1) picked up the win for the Orange in the circle, going 2.2 innings while striking out three in relief. Jocelyn Cater went the first 5.2 innings in the circle for the Orange, allowing the Vanada home run as her only blemish in the game. She allowed five hits, while striking out six in the no-decision. Anna Marie Gatti also saw time in the circle going 0.2 innings and allowing one hit.
CSU put runners on base in each of the first three innings but were unable to push the go-ahead run across the plate early in the contest as Cater shutdown the Bucs' rally in every inning.
From the third to the fifth innings, Elkins and Cater put on a pitching clinic in the circle as the duo combined for nine strikeouts in keeping the shutout intact on both sides.
Syracuse put the first run across the plate in the top of the sixth inning as Maddi Doane singled in Sammy Fernandez to give the Orange the 1-0 lead.
The Bucs responded with two outs in the bottom of the sixth as Vanada drove out her second home run of the season. The solo blast cleared the fence in left centerfield to knot the game up at 1-1.
Both sides placed runners on in the eighth before Syracuse came through with the go-ahead run in the ninth. Fernandez scored on a CSU error on Ozanne's single, while Kelsey Johnson scored on a grounder to the pitcher to give SU the 3-1 lead.
O'Hara allowed a walk to Matsumoto in the bottom of the ninth, but CSU was unable to move her around as the SU pitcher closed out the contest.
Matsumoto and Vanada had two hits apiece for the Bucs in the contest, with both of Vanada's hits going for extra bases with a double and home run.