Gandara homers twice as CSU splits second day of Willie Jewell’s Invitational

Gandara homers twice as CSU splits second day of Willie Jewell’s Invitational

CHARLESTON, S.C. – Jade Gandara led Charleston Southern at the plate with a pair of home runs and Holly Clark recorded her first shutout of the season as the Buccaneers (7-9) topped Maryland Eastern Shore, 7-0, after falling to Boise State, 5-2, on Friday afternoon.

The Willie Jewell's Invitational continues tomorrow with another faceoff between CSU and MDES.  First pitch between the Bucs and the Hawks is set for 3:00 p.m.

Game One: Boise State 5, Charleston Southern 2

Charleston Southern went toe-to-toe with Boise State until the Broncos sparked a sixth inning rally for the 5-2 win on Friday afternoon.

Tatiana Sorokina started Boise State (9-2) off strong with a leadoff single up the middle to open the game.  With a full count, BSU's top-hitter Rebekah Cervantes came up big for the Broncos with a home run over center field to give Boise State the 2-0 lead in the first inning.  Cervantes went a perfect two-for-two at the plate for BSU, adding a single down the left field line in the sixth inning.

Brittany McPherson opened the bottom of the second inning with a double to right center and advanced to third on a wild pitch with one out.  Georgi DeLio cleared the bases with a deep ball over the center field fence for her second home run of the season and a 2-2 tied ballgame.

Cheyenne Gandara (3-2) held the Broncos hitless in the third and relief pitcher Nicole Ayala traded zeroes with BSU's Paige Reimann (2-0) over the next two innings.  Kelsey Broadus (2-0) went to the circle for the Broncos in the top of the sixth and retired three of CSU's next four batters.

The Broncos pulled ahead in the sixth inning, adding three runs with hits from Cervantes and Makenzie Sullivan and an error in the field from CSU.

Ayala pitched another hitless inning in the final frame of the game, but the Buccaneers were unable to get their bats going as Broadus recorded her fourth strikeout in Boise State's fourth straight win in the tournament.

Game Two: Charleston Southern 7, Maryland Eastern Shore

Jade Gandara sent two out of the ballpark to give Charleston Southern four of its seven runs in a Friday afternoon shutout against Maryland Eastern Shore.  Freshman right-hander Holly Clark (2-2) went the distance for the Bucs with a career-high seven strikeouts in the complete effort.

After a hitless inning for MDES, Amanda Matsumoto led the Bucs off with a bunt for a base hit in the bottom of the first, followed by her 70th career stolen base.  Matsumoto is now just six stolen bases away from becoming CSU Softball's program leader.

CSU got a two-out rally going in the bottom of the second inning with singles from Mallory Kasinger and Destini EwingStephanie Bergmann connected on a double to the fence in right center to give the Bucs their first two runs.  Jade Gandara added another with a leadoff solo home run in the bottom of the third for the 3-0 CSU lead.

Sister power hitter Cheyenne Gandara helped make it a 4-0 game in the fifth inning with a single up the middle and advanced to third after Caitlyn Emberson connected on a double to deep right center.  McPherson got Gandara across the plate with a hard hit groundout that was bobbled in the infield for the RBI.

Clark commanded the rubber and held the Hawks hitless over the final three innings.  With two outs in the bottom of the sixth, Jade Gandara gave the Bucs' their last three runs with another home run to center, connecting on the first pitch she of the at-bat.  Gandara currently leads the Bucs and the Big South with six home runs on the season.

Clark wrapped up the shutout with her seventh strikeout for a career-best performance in the circle and the 7-0 CSU win.

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