CHARLESTON, S.C. - Jade Gandara continued to swing the hot bat in the second game of the day and Arizona Pilgrim hurled a complete game in the circle to pace Charleston Southern to the 6-2 win over Norfolk State in the final game of the first day of the Holy City Showdown.
Gandara went 3-for-3 from the plate with a pair of home runs and five RBI to add to her totals from the first game of the day. Annie Bakenhus added a pair of doubles and two runs scored to help CSU (16-8) top the Spartans on Friday night at Patriots Point.
Arizona Pilgrim (6-3) went the distance in the complete game effort allowing five hits and two runs (one earned) in her team-leading sixth win of the season. She struck out a season-high eight batters in the effort.
Gandara put the Bucs in the lead in the top of the first as the junior outfielder connected on the one-out solo home run. Behind facing the 1-2 count, Gandara drove the ball opposite field over the fence in left center to stake CSU to the 1-0 lead.
Gandara and the Bucs struck again in the top of the third inning. Bakenhus connected on a line drive double in the left centerfield gap to put a runner in scoring position with one out. Caitlyn Emberson drew a four-pitch walk to put two on with one out bringing Gandara to the plate. The Hemet, Calif. native connected on the first pitch with a drive over the left field fence clearing the bases and giving CSU the 4-0 lead.
Sarah Brown attempt to keep the inning alive two batters later with a triple to right centerfield as the fleet-footed freshman took the extra base and slid in ahead of the play. However, NSU starter Megan Przeslawski was able to escape the jam getting the inning-ending popup to retire the Bucs in the inning.
Norfolk State took advantage of a CSU error to plate their first run of the game in the bottom of the third. Jaylene Pryor sparked a mini-rally by drawing a one-out hit by pitch. Hunter Halford followed reaching on a fielding error allowing Pryor to take second. After Pilgrim retired Kylee Lopez on strikes, Seana Moriarty followed with an RBI single to left bringing home the run.
The Bucs struck again in the top of the seventh with heads-up base-running by Sydney Garling and Bakenhus putting the first run of the inning across the plate. Garling stole second following Emberson's walk and the cutoff throw to third in attempt to pickoff Bakenhus went up the left field line allowing Bakenhus to score and Garling to advance to third on the play.
Gandara followed four pitches later with an RBI single putting CSU ahead 6-1 heading into the bottom of the seventh.
Halford provided one final crooked number on the board for the Spartans in the bottom of the seventh connecting on a two-out solo home run to left field. Pilgrim bounced back from the blast catching Lopez looking at strike three to end the game.
News & Notes
- Jade Gandara finished the first day of the Holy City Showdown going 6-for-7 from the plate with three home runs, a double, and 10 RBI on the day.
- Arizona Pilgrim recorded her third complete game of the season in the evening contest against the Spartans.
- Annie Bakenhus' pair of doubles was the first time a CSU player has connected on a pair of two-baggers in a single game this season.
- Sarah Brown's triple was her team-leading second of the season.
- Meghan Gagliano, Sydney Garling, and Kendall Anderson all recorded stolen bases in the game. It marked the 11th time this season CSU has recorded multiple stolen bases in a game and stolen bases in 15 of the last 16 games.
Charleston Southern returns to the Holy City Showdown on Sunday afternoon as the Bucs take on Norfolk State (2:30 p.m.) and Eastern Illinois (7 p.m.) at the Patriots Point Athletics Complex.