CHARLESTON, S.C. –Charleston Southern's Alex Tomasovich and Harrison Wilkins each homered as the Bucs scored eight runs in the first four innings and held off Savannah State, 8-4, on Tuesday at CSU Ballpark.
The Bucs had five extra-base hits early to shake off a slow weekend offensively, and start their six-game home stand off on a high note against a Savannah State squad that came in at 9-2.
"We've kind of been slow starters," CSU head coach Stuart Lake said after the game. "It was nice to get going early, but we just got finished talking about how you have to be able to handle it. Savannah State is a good team, as their record indicated, they've beaten a number of good teams already."
Lake made some changes to his lineup to try and get his team to respond after a slow weekend offensively. First baseman Harrison Wilkins responded to his start, going 2-for-3 and lifting a two-run home run to right during the Bucs' five-run third.
Charleston Southern (6-6) led 8-2 through six innings before the Tigers started piling up singles and base runners, as the Bucs committed a pair of errors. Reliever Austin Weekley came in to pitch out of a bases-loaded jam in the eight to get his second save of the season. The Tigers loaded the bases on Weekley in the ninth on an error and a pair of soft singles, but induced a pop-up to Wilkins at first to end the threat.
The Bucs broke into the scoring column first as Tomasovich roped his first home run of the season to straightaway centerfield to give CSU a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the second.
CSU broke things open in the bottom of the third as the Bucs' bats came to life with two outs. Bucs' leftfielder John Faircloth doubled to right center to start the rally and scored on a Brian Welch single to build the lead to 2-0.
Starting pitcher Chase Shelton doubled off the fence in centerfield to score Welch and build the lead to 3-0. Tomasovich followed with his second hit, slapping an RBI single to right as the Bucs moved ahead 4-0.
Wilkins followed with a towering home run, his first of the year, to right center as CSU led 6-0.
Savannah State cut the lead to 6-2 in the fourth on a two-run single by Parker Nix, but the Bucs got the two runs back in the bottom of the inning.
Centerfielder Bobby Ison lined a double down the left field line and Faircloth followed with a sacrifice fly as the Bucs scored their final runs.
Junior Stephen Leopard (WP, 1-1) came on in relief to allow one earned run in 3.1 innings of work. He struck out three with no walks.
Tomasovich' big day led the Bucs' offense. He was 3-for-4 with an RBI and two runs scored.
Charleston Southern hosts College of Charleston on Wednesday afternoon at 2 p.m. at CSU Ballpark.