Truitt’s Dominance; Payne’s Two-Run single Lift Charleston Southern to Series-Opening Win Over Longwood
CHARLESTON, S.C. – Charleston Southern baseball returned to Big South play Friday night as they played host to Longwood and again erased an early deficit to take the 7-4 victory at Nielsen Field.
Longwood (16-25, 5-11 Big South) was the aggressor in the early going, finding three runs in the first frame after loading the bases. Gregory Ryan scored the first run with his ground ball before a L DeLeon double down the line in right made it 3-0.
Charleston Southern (18-19, 10-6 Big South) found an answer in the home half of the frame as Kieran Davis singled to left center, scoring Jaylin Rae and making it 3-1. The Buccaneers answered again in the third inning as Ike George hit a solo shot to right, making it a one-one contest.
The Lancers made some noise in the fourth inning, as small ball led to another run for the visitors. A bunt from D Kowalski was enough to bring T Thomas around to score.
Connor Aldrich brought it back to a one-run contest with his double to right to score Nico Regino before the call would again be answered in the sixth frame as Chandler Tuupo came on to pinch hit and he made the most of his opportunity. His double to right scored Jared Payne and saw the first tie of the game.
The seventh inning became the turning point as Payne came up with the biggest hit of the night. His single through the right side scored Kieran Davis and Rae and the Buc took their first lead of the contest. Charleston Southern then added an insurance run in the eighth as Davis scored George on a sacrifice fly.
Evan Truitt (W, 3-5) qualified for the win after a stellar performance out of the bullpen. His final line read six complete innings, surrendering just one hit and collecting 10 punchies. Truitt came into the game trailing 3-2 and shut the door on the Lancers the rest of the way. Kaleb Hill started the game for the Bucs, giving up three earned on four hits in three complete.
Aidan Van Vickle (L, 2-1) takes the loss after giving up the go-ahead run in the seventh, his only earned run of the outing. The Lancers used five different arms to collect the 24 outs as the starter Logan Berrier went 3.2 innings, giving up three earned across four hits.
Charleston Southern continues its Big South weekender with Longwood as Saturday sees an adjusted time of 11:30 a.m. while Sunday’s finale brings a 1:30 p.m. start time.
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