Charleston Southern 7, USC Upstate 1
Freshman Will Hartsell had three RBIs and the Buccaneers' bullpen shut out USC Upstate over the final six innings to lift Charleston Southern to a win on Tuesday night at CSU Ballpark.
Hartsell had an RBI double in the second inning and added a two-sun single in the sixth as CSU (13-5) scored in four of its final five at-bats to pull away from Upstate (8-10).
CSU head coach Stuart Lake gave Hartsell credit for getting his team on the board early.
"Will had a huge hit for us early to take some pressure off," Lake said of his second baseman. "He had a big night for us and sparked us offensively. We need him to get hot as we open conference play."
Buccaneer relievers Joe Pistaccho (1-0), Denis Buckley and Kyle Dyson combined to allow just three hits and struck out eight over the final six innings.
Pistacchio struck out four and worked three scoreless innings to grab his first win of the season. Starter Andrew Locklear allowed a run and four hits in three innings to open the game. CSU struck out 11 Spartans in the win.
"I'm proud of our bullpen," Lake said. "I thought we had a good start from Locklear, but I'm proud of Joe (Pistacchio). He really pitched well. Then Buckley comes in and gets out of a jam and Dyson made things easier than they have been in the ninth."
CSU took a 1-0 lead on an RBI double in the second by Hartsell, scoring Andrew Widell, who had reached on a walk as the Bucs' first base runner.
The Bucs took the lead for good in the fourth as Chase Shelton and Nick Berry had back-to-back doubles to spark the offense and move CSU ahead, 2-1.
The Buccaneers broke the game open in the sixth. Hartsell's bases-loaded single plated two after the Bucs had loaded the bases on a walk and a hit batter.
Alex Tomasovich added an RBI double and Austin Hicks smoked a single back up the box as the Bucs added two insurance runs in the ninth.
Tomasovich, Hartsell and Berry all had two hits to lead the Bucs, who outhit USC Upstate 11-7.
Right fielder Tyler Lesch had two hits and scored a run for Upstate. Starter Eric Birklund (0-3) gave up two earned runs, walked two and struck out three.
The Bucs open Big South Conference play this weekend at Longwood in Farmville, Va. The three-game series opens with a 6 p.m. first pitch on Friday.
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