Zach Mitchell struck out a career-high seven batters and USC Upstate topped Charleston Southern 8-2 Wednesday from Harley Park.
Mitchell improved to 1-1 after scattering four hits and allowing two runs in five innings on the hill. Richie Lacell pitched four scoreless innings in relief and earned his first career save.
Charleston Southern starting pitcher Alex Ministeri lasted just four innings and surrendered three runs on five hits and suffered the loss.
James Fowlkes went 3-for-3 with two runs scored and three stolen bases, and Cody Brittain and Erik Samples registered two hits apiece to lead the Upstate offensive attack.
Andrew Widell, Sam Knight and Jack Crittenberger all had two hits for Charleston Southern.
Charleston Southern (10-9) pushed across a run in the first inning on a sacrifice fly from shortstop Cole Murphy to drive in Brandon Burris.
Upstate (8-11) used a two-run single to centerfield from Fickas in the second inning to plate Brittain and Jake Beaver with the go-ahead run.
Crittenberger tied the score 2-2 in the third inning when he scored from third on a wild pitch with two outs.
Zach Krider regained the lead for Upstate with an RBI single in the fourth inning that scored Fowlkes with the game-winning run. Fowlkes drew a one-out walk and stole second before Krider slapped a single up the middle for his 20th RBI of the season.
The Spartans tallied five more runs in the sixth inning on a pair of doubles and a throwing error by Charleston Southern relief pitcher Joe Pistacchio. Fickas was hit by a pitch to lead off the inning and came around to score on a double to left from Fowlkes. After Krider and Beaver walked to load the bases, Pistacchio allowed two runs to score when his throw home sailed wide of Widell and trickled all the way to the backstop. Samples followed with a double into left-centerfield to clear the bases and cap the scoring for the Spartans.
Upstate continues a five-game homestand Thursday at 6 p.m. when the Spartans welcome Columbia to Harley Park for game one of a four-game series.