Bucs struggle in doubleheader sweep to Longwood; Johnson homers and makes pitching debut on Saturday

Bucs struggle in doubleheader sweep to Longwood; Johnson homers and makes pitching debut on Saturday

FARMVILLE, Va. - Charleston Southern fell in both ends of the doubleheader on Saturday as the Buccaneers closed out the 2015 regular season on the road at Longwood, dropping a 9-3 and a 13-0 decision to the Lancers.

Stevi Johnson connected on a three-run home run in the first game of the doubleheader and the sophomore from Visalia, Calif., made her pitching debut in the circle hurling an inning of shutout relief in the second game to highlight the Charleston Southern efforts on the weekend.

The Buccaneers return home to Charleston, S.C., before heading to Buies Creek, N.C., and Campbell University on May 7, for the first round of the 2015 Big South Softball Championships. Seedings for the tournament will be announced next week by the Big South office.

Game One: Longwood 9, Charleston Southern 3
Longwood erupted for five runs in the bottom of the fifth inning capped by a Taylor Hedrick three-run home run to offset Johnson's fourth home run of the season as the Buccaneers fell in the second game of the series to the Lancers.

Jennifer Giles (13-15) suffered the loss in the complete game effort, allowing nine runs on nine hits, while striking out six. Libby Morris (6-7) picked up the win inside the circle for the Lancers going 5.1 innings in the start, while Elizabeth McCarthy picked up her first save of the season in relief.

Justina Augustine put the Lancers on top in the bottom of the first with a leadoff solo home run, while Katie Shinrock had an RBI single in the second to stake the Lancers to the 2-0 early lead.

The Buccaneers battled back in the third as Taylor Powell drew a leadoff walk. Marci Christian drew an intentional walk with two outs in the frame and Johnson made the Lancers pay with her fourth home run of the season, driving the ball over the right centerfield fence to put the Bucs in the lead.

The Lancers sent eight to the plate in the fifth to take control of the contest with Glenn Walters connecting on a two-run single before Hedrick's pinch-hit three-run home run cleared the bases.

Longwood added to their lead in the sixth on Emily Murphy's two-run shot to put the final margin at 9-3.

Stephanie Bergmann had three hits to lead the Bucs batters in the contest.

Game Two: Longwood 13, Charleston Southern 0 (5 inn.)
Longwood did all of their damage in the first three innings, jumping out to a 13-0 lead, while Stevi Johnson mustered CSU's lone hit of the contest with a single in the top of the fourth as the Bucs fell in the series finale.

Hayley Elkins (2-3) went the first three innings of the contest for the Bucs, allowing 13 runs on 11 hits, while striking out two in the loss. Johnson made her pitching debut of the season in the fourth, allowing one hit and a walk before holding the Lancers scoreless.

McCarthy (20-12) went the distance for the Lancers with the complete game one-hit shutout. She walked two and struck out nine in the win.

Longwood sent all nine batters to the plate in the opening frame with Chelsea Sciacca connecting on the solo home run to cap the scoring. Murphy added a three-run shot in the bottom of the third for the final runs of the game as the Lancers cruised to the win.