CONWAY, S.C. - Charleston Southern surrendered the go-ahead sixth inning home run to Chelsea D'Avilar as the Buccaneers fell to host Coastal Carolina on Wednesday afternoon at the CCU Softball Field, 2-1.
With the score knotted up at 1-1 heading into the Chanticleers' eventual final at-bats, D'Avilar connected on the full-count offering from Nicole Ayala to put Coastal ahead late. The solo shot cleared the left field fence to give the Chants the one-run lead.
Kaitlin Beasley-Polko (7-8) retired the Bucs (17-14) in order in the top of the seventh inning to close out the contest as CSU fell to the Chants (10-9) in the first matchup between the two former Big South rivals since Coastal Carolina joined the Sun Belt in 2017.
CSU put the opening run of the game across the top of the second inning as the Bucs took advantage of a Beasley-Polko bout of wildness to take the early 1-0 lead.
Summer Moore opened the offensive stretch getting hit by a pitch. Madison Koger followed with a full-count walk before Meghan Gagliano hit into a fielder's choice for the second out. Annie Bakenhus loaded the bases with a walk before Caitlyn Emberson was plunked by the first pitch to bring the run home.
The Chanticleers tied the contest up in the bottom of the third. Kailey Mellen and Natalie David connected on back-to-back two-out singles to chase CSU reliever Alyssa Heinrich from the circle. Samantha Sack and Timi Tooley followed with back-to-back walks to bring home the Chants' first run of the contest before Visnic retired Stavi Augur on a line drive to Sarah Brown.
Mallory Kasinger provided CSU's top offensive opportunity over the final three innings with a two-out double down the left field line in the top of the fifth. However, that was all the Bucs were able to scratch out against Beasley-Polko over the final few frames.
D'Avilar's blast opened the sixth inning and put the Chants ahead, 2-1, after working a full-count against Ayala (0-1).
Beasley-Polk retired the final seven batters she faced over the last three innings with Emberson's fly out to left field ending the contest in favor of the home team.
Ayala suffered her first loss of the season on a mostly staff pitching outing for the Bucs on Wednesday afternoon. The senior went the final 1.2 innings allowing one hit and one walk in the loss.
Beasley-Polko went the distance in the complete game win. She allowed one hit and three walks while striking out eight.
News & Notes
- Wednesday's contest marked the second time this season CSU's offense was held to just one hit in a game.
- Mallory Kasinger's double in the top of the sixth inning was her team-leading eighth two-bagger of the season.
- CSU was held without a stolen base for just the sixth time this season in the loss to the Chanticleers.
Charleston Southern returns to Big South play on Saturday afternoon with a doubleheader against Longwood to start off a three-game series with the Lancers. First pitch of the 2 p.m. contest at the CSU Softball Field on Saturday will be streamed live via ESPN3.