CHARLESTON, S.C. - Campbell swept both ends of Saturday's doubleheader as Charleston Southern fell to the visiting Camels, 8-3 and 7-4, at the CSU Softball Field to close out the Big South series.
Charleston Southern (25-24, 6-9) had a seventh-inning rally fall short in the first game of the day as the Camels turned a late double play to hold off the Bucs. Campbell (21-23, 9-9) utilized their own rally in the final inning of the second game, scoring four late runs to complete the weekend sweep over the Buccaneers.
Game One: Campbell 8, Charleston Southern 3
Campbell's early lead held true in the first game of Saturday's doubleheader as the Camels held off a late Charleston Southern rally in the bottom of the seventh inning to take the game, 8-3.
Nicole Ayala (1-3) suffered the loss in the circle for the Bucs after going the first four innings and allowing six hits and six runs (three earned) while walking six. Emily Visnic went the final three innings in relief.
Megan Richards (14-9) went the distance for the second consecutive game as the Campbell right-hander allowed seven hits and three runs while striking out seven.
Campbell got on the board early in the top of the second as Cassie Wancheck doubled in Katie Manring to put the Camels ahead 1-0. Lizabeth McCurry added a two-run double to put Campbell ahead 3-0 in the top of the third scoring Caroline Smith and Bri Bryant.
Three more runs came across in the top of the fourth inning as Rachel McCollum and Bryant scored on a dropped popup in the infield with two outs in the inning. Manring followed with an RBI single through the left side to put Campbell ahead 6-0 after four innings.
Christa Hall added a two-run single in the top of the seventh scoring Wancheck and Megan Mozingo to push Campbell's final runs across the plate.
The Bucs battled back in the bottom of the seventh. Summer Moore drew a leadoff walk and moved to second on Taylor Gleason's infield single. Two batters later, Jade Gandara connected on a two-run triple down the left field line scoring both runners to cut the deficit to 8-2. Mallory Kasinger followed with an RBI single up the middle for the Bucs' third run of the inning, but Campbell closed out the contest with a double play to secure the series win.
Gandara (2-for-4) and Kasinger (2-for-4) paced CSU's offensive in the contest with multi-hit games against Richards.
Game Two: Campbell 7, Charleston Southern 4
Campbell scored four in the top of the seventh inning highlighted by Megan Mozingo's go-ahead three-run home run as the Camels completed the comeback over the Buccaneers on Saturday afternoon.
The Buccaneers held the 4-1 lead heading into the fifth thanks to Mallory Kasinger and Sarah Brown home runs. The Camels fought back with six unanswered runs over the final three innings to take the win.
Nicole Ayala suffered the loss for the second time on the afternoon after going a season-high 6.1 innings and allowing 11 hits and five runs while striking out three. Holly Clark added 0.2 innings before handing the ball back to Ayala in the seventh for the final out.
Lexy Head recorded her first win of the weekend after going the final four innings in relief. The freshman right-hander allowed two hits while striking out three after entering the game for starter Haley Hutchins. Hutchins went the first three innings allowing three hits and four runs in the no decision.
Caroline Smith put the first run of the game across in the plate in the top of the third. The Camels' shortstop connected on a one-out double down the left field line scoring McCollum to put Campbell ahead early.
The Bucs responded with three runs in the bottom of the inning. Meghan Gagliano connected on her first triple of her collegiate career with one out in the inning with her line drive going over the right fielder and one-hopping the wall. She scored on a wild pitch to tie the game up at 1-1. Kasinger followed three batters later with a two-run home run over the left centerfield fence to put the Bucs ahead 3-1.
Brown led off the bottom of the fourth with a full-count home run over the left field fence chasing Hutchins from the game and giving CSU the three-run lead.
Smith started Campbell's comeback with a two-out solo home run to right center. Katie Manring added an RBI single in the top of the sixth to cut CSU's lead down to 4-3.
Smith tied the contest up at 4-4 with a sacrifice fly scoring Alex Perryman with none out in the seventh. Mozingo connected on the go-ahead three-run shot two batters later to provide the final margin.
Emberson drilled a two-out double down the left field line to keep CSU's hopes alive, but Head managed to get Gandara to popup to end the contest.
Brown (2-for-2) led CSU's offensive efforts at the pltae and added her 15th stolen base of the season in the loss.
News & Notes
- Madison Koger's sixth stolen base of the season in the bottom of the third inning of game one established a new team single-season record. It was the Bucs' 93rd stolen base as a team this season breaking the mark established in 1993 (92). Sarah Brown added a stolen base in the final game of the doubleheader.
- The Bucs (94 steals) are currently 14 stolen bases away from a top-10 campaign in the Big South Softball annals with the 10th-place mark of 108 steals set by Winthrop in 1996.
- Nicole Ayala started both ends of the doubleheader on Saturday afternoon, the first time the senior right-hander has accomplished the feat in her CSU career. She also went a career-high 6.1 innings in the second game of the doubleheader against the Camels.
Charleston Southern takes a week off before returning to Big South Conference play this upcoming weekend in Lynchburg, Va. The Bucs start a three-game series at Liberty University on April 20-21 with first pitch on Friday night set for 6 p.m.