Chants Bounce Back For Split at Presbyterian
April 12, 2014
CLINTON - The Coastal Carolina softball team rebounded from a tough one-run loss in the opener of Saturday's doubleheader to earn a 5-1 victory in the second game and split the Big South Conference twinbill.
Presbyterian pulled out a 5-4 win in the first game on a two-out, two-run single in the bottom of the seventh. However, the Chanticleers (29-12, 11-2 BSC) controlled the nightcap as Ashley Bagwell shut out the Blue Hose for six innings and Morgan Noad capped a four-run second inning with a three-run homer.
Bagwell (11-6) won her third straight start, allowing just five hits, striking out three and walking one. The three strikeouts gave her 601 for her career. Jessie Winans went 2 for 3 with a run scored, while Desiree Zaragoza added her second career home run.
Coastal left the bases loaded in the first inning, but capitalized on another opportunity in the second, doing all of the damage with two outs. Winans started it with a two-out double to right-center and Bri Chiusano followed with an RBI single off the shortstop's glove for a 1-0 lead. After Kiana Quolas was hit by a pitch, Noad powered a 0-1 pitch from Presbyterian starter Sydney Seigler over the fence in right-center for her 10th homer of the season.
Presbyterian (20-20, 5-9)tried to mount a two-out rally of its own in the bottom of the second, loading the bases, but Bagwell escaped by forcing a popout. The senior right-hander then retired 12 of the next 13 Blue Hose batters entering the seventh.
By that point, the Chants led 5-0 thanks to Zaragoza's home run over the left-field fence with two outs in the top of the seventh. Ironically, the other home run of the senior's career also came at Presbyterian two seasons ago.
PC spoiled the shutout with a double, a single and a groundout, but Bagwell got a groundout to first baseman Kylie Mulholland to make sure the Blue Rose didn't rally as they did in the first game.
After Presbyterian jumped out to a quick 3-0 lead against Quolas in the day's first inning, the pitcher erased the deficit with a three-run home run in the fifth inning. Kasey Oliver drew a walk and Chiusano followed with her second infield single of the game. Quolas then fouled off three straight pitches before driving a 2-2 offering from PC starter Kensley Lowdermilk over the fence in left for her fifth homer of the year.
The Chanticleers then grabbed a 4-3 lead in the top of the seventh on a clutch two-out single by Amanda Daneker off of reliever Natasha Sherrod. Quolas dropped a bloop double into shallow right leading off and pinchrunner Taylor Harris advanced to third on a wild pitch. After two flyball outs that were not deep enough to bring Harris home, Daneker grounded one past the diving shortstop into left to put Coastal in front for the first time.
The Blue Hose, though, returned to their hitting ways from the start of the game in the bottom of the inning. Jill McLean singled to right, Hope Rogers hit a liner off the glove of Winans and Shelby Petik singled through the hole on the left side to load the bases with nobody out. Quolas, though, responded with back-to-back strikeouts and was one pitch away from securing the win. Instead, Kayla Dunlap, who had entered as a pinchhitter in the fifth, hit a 2-2 pitch back up the middle. Centerfielder Brooke Donovan made a good throw to Daneker at the plate, but Rogers slid in just ahead of the tag to give PC the victory.
In their first game since being shut out in three straight games by Radford last weekend, Presbyterian's bats came out firing in the first inning. Following a leadoff bloop single by Erin Ruff, the Blue Hose got three consecutive extra-base hits to take a quick 3-0 lead. McLean hit her sixth triple of the season to drive in the first run and Rogers and Petik followed with doubles.
Presbyterian finished with 12 hits against Quolas (18-5), who suffered her first loss in eight starts. Four of the hits came in the first and four more in the seventh. She struck out seven and walked just one.
Coastal totaled 10 hits against two Blue Hose pitchers, with Daneker collecting a career-high three. Chiusano, Quolas and Rasley each had two. Daneker also had a hit in the second game for a four-hit day.
The teams will wrap up the series with a single game Sunday at 1 p.m.