SB Preview: Bucs continue road trip with weekend series at Hampton

SB Preview: Bucs continue road trip with weekend series at Hampton

CHARLESTON, S.C. - Charleston Southern softball is back on the road again this weekend as the Buccaneers make the trek to Hampton, Va. and the Lady Pirates Softball Stadium for a three-game Big South series against Hampton starting on Saturday afternoon. The Bucs-Pirates will start the Saturday doubleheader at noon, while Sunday's series finale is set for 1 p.m.

The Buccaneers (13-27, 7-5 Big South) enter the weekend on a four-game winning streak after sweeping Presbyterian in a three-game set over the last two weeks. CSU topped the Blue Hose in the doubleheader opener back on March 27, 7-0 and 1-0, before powering their way past PC this past Wednesday, 8-3.

In CSU's most recent win over the Blue Hose, Rhiana Hubbard, Sarah Brown, and Caitlyn Emberson all homered on their way to completing their second consecutive sweep over Presbyterian. Hubbard sparked the offense with a solo home run in the second inning, while Emberson and Brown both went deep in the fifth to pace strong pitching efforts from Arizona Pilgrim and Holly Clark.

The Buccaneers' current winning streak started back on March 24 in the series finale against Campbell as CSU has posted at least one win in every single conference series in 2019. CSU topped Radford and PC, while taking the final games against both USC Upstate and Campbell.

CSU currently ranks fifth in the Big South standings this year at the midway point in the season. The Bucs currently trail Longwood (8-1), USC Upstate (8-4), Radford (6-3), and Campbell (9-6) with series against Hampton, Longwood, Gardner-Webb, and Winthrop to play.

Annie Bakenhus continues to be the CSU leader in the clubhouse in a majority of the hitting categories. The senior left fielder paces the Bucs with a .339 batting average to go with 22 runs scored and 43 hits, as well as tying with Jade Gandara with a team-high eight doubles.

Caitlyn Emberson's sixth home run of the season powers the Bucs' attack as the senior catcher leads the team with 22 RBI. Emberson is also the team leader and paces the Big South with 12 hit by pitches, as well as sitting among the conference leaders with 18 walks.

Sarah Brown has come on strong late in the season. The sophomore infielder has lined up at every position except for first base and she is currently second on the team with a .313 batting average. She connected on her 10th career home run against PC, while leading the team with 10 stolen bases on the year.

Arizona Pilgrim has appeared in 13 straight games and 17 of the last 18 dating back to the beginning of March. The senior right-hander has made 32 appearances this season with 21 starts on the year. The Taft, Calif. native has posted an 8-15 record with eight complete games, while posting a 3.83 ERA.

Holly Clark has made 26 appearances with 14 starts on the season over 83.2 innings pitched. Alyssa Heinrich has been effective in short relief with 17 appearances and closing out a Big South-leading 13 games.

Hampton boasts an 18-11 record on the season and a 3-6 mark in conference play on the year. The Pirates sandwiched series losses to Campbell and USC Upstate around a sweep over Presbyterian on March 23-24 in their first year in Big South competition.

The Lady Pirates Softball Stadium has been a tough venue for opposing teams this year with Hampton boasting a 14-6 record inside the friendly confines this year. Included in the mark are wins over Delaware State, N.C. Central, Mount St. Mary's, Drexel, Iona, S.C. State, and Coppin State.

Taylor Warrick is third in the Big South and paces the Pirates with a .398 batting average. The junior outfielder leads the team with 35 hits, six doubles, five triples, and five home runs, while also picking up 12 stolen bases.

DaSha Hill paces the Pirates with 23 stolen bases on the year and a .341 batting average, while also posting 30 hits and 23 runs scored. Brianna Anderson is hitting .300 on th season with a team-high 27 runs scored.

Emily Workman boasts a team-high 1.92 ERA and a 5-1 record over 10 appearances on the season. Allie Hotetz has a team-high 16 appearances with an 8-5 record in 69.0 innings pitched, while Allyson Babinsack has 13 appearances and 12 starts on the year.

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