CHARLESTON, S.C.- The Coastal Carolina softball team split a Big South Conference doubleheader with the Charleston Southern Lady Buccaneers today at Charleston Southern Softball Field. Game one saw Coastal Carolina drop a 5-2 decision, but the Chanticleers righted the ship in game two, defeating the Lady Bucs, 4-3.
Charleston Southern (16-17, 2-0 Big South) got on the board in the bottom of the first, as Amy Trenkamp walked with one out. Two batters later, Gail Matsushima tripled driving in Trenkamp for the 1-0 lead.
Coastal Carolina (9-20, 0-2 Big South) collected its first hit of the game with two outs in the second inning, as senior Kelsey Riffel (Wichita, Kan./Maize) singled up the middle. Riffel would eventually be stranded on first as Lady Buc hurler Sondra Vetter finished off the inning by fanning designated player Olivia Williams (Whiteville, N.C./Greensboro).
Trenkamp lead off the Lady Buc fourth with a triple, and Megan Hall would promptly single to left to drive in Trenkamp and extend the Charleston Southern lead to 2-0. After a Matsushima intentional walk, the Lady Bucs pulled a double steal to advance each runner a base. Brittany York then doubled to drive in both runners and stretch the lead to 4-0.
Charleston Southern would add a run in the home half of the fourth, as Brittany Gianinni doubled to lead off the inning, and scored two batters later to stretch the CSU lead to 5-0.
In the Coastal Carolina fifth the Chanticleers finally got on the board. Freshman Sarah Maples (Pasadena, Texas/ Deer Park) doubled to left centerfield to lead off the inning. After another Riffel single, Pisone reached on an infield single to the shortstop to load the bases with one out. Catcher Morgan Dodd (Chattanooga, Tenn./Girls Preparatory) then singled up the middle to drive in Maples to cut the Charleston Southern lead to 5-1.
The Chanticleers again cut into the Lady Buc lead with one swing of the bat in the sixth, as sophomore Michelle Evans (Upland, Calif./Upland) hit her first home run of the season, a shot to left field that cleared the fence to bring Coastal Carolina within three runs. However, the three run deficit would be the closest the Chants would get to taking the lead, dropping game one of the twinbill 5-2.
Chanticleer starter Katelin Edwards (Greer, S.C./Byrnes) takes the loss, falling to 4-13 on the season. The final line on the sophomore in the complete game was five earned runs allowed on six hits, and seven strikeouts.
Sondra Vetter took the win for Charleston Southern improving to 7-4 on the season. She allowed two runs on six hits in the complete game and struck out nine Chanticleers.
Riffel was 2-for-3 at the plate for Coastal Carolina, while six Lady Bucs picked up hits in the victory for Charleston Southern.
In game two, Coastal Carolina starter Ashley Frederick (Lusby, Md./Patuxent)worked her way out of a two-out jam. With a runner on third base and the dangerous Gail Matsushima at the dish, Frederick froze the slugger with a 3-2 fastball to retire the side and end the Charleston Southern threat.
Coastal Carolina would get threaten in the visitor half of the second with two outs, as Alyssa Tornatore (Frederick, Md./Tuscarora) walked, and was followed a Dodd double to put runners on second and third would with two down. The next batter, the pitcher Frederick, in her fourth at bat in her Coastal Carolina career, would pop out to center to end the threat.
In the Charleston Southern second, Frederick retired the first two batters of the inning via strikeout, but allowed a two-out double to Jamie Wellons to put a runner of second with two dead. Frederick would bounce back for her third strikeout of the inning, retiring Gianinni with a changeup on a 2-2 count.
In the third, Brittany Birnbaum (Chino Hills, Calif./Ayala) reached base with a one out walk. Maples followed with a single through the left side to put runners first and second with one out with Evans at the dish. The sophomore, looking to duplicate her power stroke from game one, hit a liner to the second baseman Trenkamp, who tagged out Maples and fired to first for the double play to end the inning.
In the Lady Buc half of the third, Charleston Southern loaded the bases with two outs, but Frederick went back to her best friend in the early innings, the strikeout, to get catcher Brittany York to swing and miss and avoid the jam.
Snellings would lead off the fourth for the Chants with a triple to right field, and scorethree pitches later on an illegal pitch by Wellons to give the Chanticleers the 1-0 lead.
In the bottom half of the inning, Megan Adams led off with a single to center, and advanced to second on a Wellons sacrifice, and advanced to third on a Ashley Fowler ground out, putting a runner on third with two out. Gianinni then hit a lazy fly ball to short left that was botched by the Coastal Carolina defense to allow Adams to score and tie the game at 1-1.
After a Ballard pop out to lead off the fifth, Birnbaum singled to center, and Maples followed with a single of her own to put runners on first and second, with Evans at the plate. On the second pitch of the at bat, she blasted her second homer of the day, this time a three-run shot over the left field fence to knock Wellons, the CSU starter out of the contest and give Coastal Carolina the 4-1 lead.
Trenkamp and Hall would lead off the home half of the fifth with singles. Frederick was able to retire Matsushima on a fly out to left, and fanned York and pinch hitter Amy Rice her seventh and eighth strikeouts of the day to end the inning.
Wellons walked to lead off the Charleston Southern sixth. After a Fowler pop out, Giannini doubled to deep left field to driver in Wellons and trim the Coastal Carolina lead to 4-2. Frederick would retire Lombard on a strikeout for the second out, and Trenkamp flew out to left to end the inning.
After Coastal Carolina was retired in order in the seventh, Hall led off the bottom half of the frame with a rocket off of Frederick’s glove for a single, and moved to second on a wild pitch. Matsushima then doubled down the left field line to drive in Hall and cut the Chanticleer lead in half at 4-3. The next batter, Kristen Kelleher, was hit by a pitch to put the tying run on second and the winning run on first. A failed CSU sacrifice resulted in the first out of the inning. Jamie Wellons, would strike out swinging for the second out. Frederick would then dig deep, and fan Fowler for her career-high 11th strikeout of the contest as the Chants hung on to take the 4-3 nailbiter.
Frederick improves to 5-5 with the win as she allowed 10 hits, two earned runs, and fanned 11 in the victory.
Wellons falls to 9-13 with the loss. She threw 4.1 innings, and allowed four runs on six hits.
Maples was 2-for-4 on the game, while Evans was 1-for-3, accounting for all three of Coastal Carolina’s RBI in the contest.
Coastal Carolina will return to action on Wed., April 1 as the Chanticleers will travel to UNC Wilmington for a single game matchup with the Seahawks. The non-conference tilt is slated for a start.