USM baseball team beats UMass Dartmouth for second straight conference title

Posted May 11, 2013, at 4:53 p.m.

GORHAM, Maine — For the second straight year, the University of Southern Maine baseball team has won the Little East Conference championship. The top-seeded Huskies defeated the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth Corsairs, 4-2, Saturday afternoon to capture the title.

The Huskies have won five straight games, and 12 of the last 13, to improve their overall record to 37-7. This is the first time that the Huskies have won back-to-back tournament titles, and their fourth tournament championship (1997, 1999, 2012, 2013) since the conference added baseball in 1997.

By winning the LEC title, the Huskies also earned an automatic berth into the 2013 NCAA Division III Baseball Tournament. The entire field for the eight regional tournaments will be selected Sunday evening and announced Monday.

UMass Dartmouth, coached by former USM All-American Bob Prince, earned the right to face the Huskies in the championship round by winning a halted game from Friday over the University of Massachusetts Boston 21-5, then defeating second-seeded Eastern Connecticut State University 4-2 in an elimination game. The Corsairs, reaching the championship round for the third time, went 3-2 in the tournament and finished their season 18-23. The Corsairs came into the tournament as the fifth seed.

Junior Chris Bernard (Scarborough, Maine) led the Huskies 12-hit attack with three hits. Rookie Sam Dexter, senior Tucker White and juniors Forrest Chadwick and John Carey each had two hits apiece. Senior Nick Grady, who hit .588 with eight RBI in four games, was named the tournament’s Most Outstanding Player.

Sophomore Andrew Richards earned his sixth win of the season hurling five innings of four-hit shutout relief. Richards walked one and struck out two in relief of freshman southpaw starter Tyler Leavitt who went four-plus innings allowing two runs (one earned) on three hits and one walk.

Freshman Connor Shaw and sophomore Nate Farias had two hits each for the Corsairs. Both had a single and a double. Farias scored one of the UMD runs and Shaw had an RBI.

Southern Maine grabbed a 1-0 lead in the third inning when Dexter led off with a single, advanced to second on a sacrifice by senior Anthony Pisani and scored on White’s single up the middle.

UMD came back in the fifth against Leavitt and Richards to score twice for a 2-1 lead. Sophomore Alex Newton singled off Leavitt and moved to second on a wild pitch. Farias worked a walk from Leavitt to put runners at first and second. Both runners moved up on another wild pitch. Newton would score on an infield error to tie the game.

In the sixth, the Huskies loaded the bases on consecutive singles by Chadwick, Grady and Bernard. Carey drove in Chadwick, and Grady moved to third, with a fly ball to right field. Junior Matt Verrier brought home the go-ahead run with a groundout.

USM tacked on an insurance run in the seventh after Fuller got the first two outs. White stroked his ninth triple of the season off the right field fence and came home on Chadwick’s single back through the box.

Trinity 5, Bowdoin 3

NEW BRITAIN, Conn. – The Bowdoin baseball team saw its NESCAC Championship hopes dashed as Trinity freshman John Meuchner tossed the first complete game of his collegiate career, helping Trinity to a 5-3 win in an elimination game at the NESCAC Tournament Saturday morning.

Meuchner, who improved to 3-3 with the victory, allowed eight hits. He struck out seven and walked seven and stranded 13 Bowdoin runners on base.

SOFTBALL

Springfield 2, Husson 1

BABSON PARK, Mass. — First-year Jenna Webb had three hits and scored the go-ahead run in the top of the sixth inning as the fourth-seeded Springfield College softball team rallied for a 2-1 victory over seventh-seeded Husson University in an elimination game at the Babson Park NCAA Division III Regional on Saturday afternoon at Alumni Field.

With the victory, Springfield improves to 28-19 while Husson finishes at 31-12-1.

Junior Christina Leader had three hits and scored once, first-year Melissa Nelson had a pair of hits and senior Chelsea Bender and junior Elizabeth Joseph each drove in a run for the Pride.

Sophomore Heidi Shaw led the Eagles of Bangor with two hits while senior Aimee Mortensen doubled and scored. Sophomore Deb Colpitts drove in Husson’s lone run.

Junior Amanda Ryan, making her second start of the regional for the Eagles, got two quick outs before Nelson and Webb hit back-to-back singles, putting runners on the corners for the Pride. Ryan was able to get out of the inning without any damage on a fly ball to right, and Husson helped her by taking a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the frame as Mortensen cracked a two-out double to left and Colpitts followed with an RBI single.

The Eagles, who picked up four of their six hits in the first three innings, left runners on the corners in the second inning and then left two more on in the third, unable to extend their lead. Springfield, meanwhile, got one-out singles from Joseph and Leader, with both advancing to scoring position but unable to score in the second and third innings, respectively.

Both Ryan and Pride starter junior Jennifer Joseph got into a groove in the middle innings. Joseph allowed just one hit over the fourth and fifth innings while Ryan retired eight consecutive batters after the Joseph single before getting into trouble to start the sixth inning.

Leader started the Springfield rally with a single and moved to second on a sacrifice bunt by Nelson. Webb hit a double to the base of the centerfield wall to put a pair in scoring position and after sophomore Kayla Merrill came on to relieve Ryan, Bender drove home Leader with a single to left field, tying the game at 1-1. Merrill then walked senior Breann Joyce to load the bases and Joseph followed with a fly ball to right field, plating Web to give Springfield a 2-1 lead. Merrill finished the inning with a strikeout to avoid any further damage.

Ryan, who fell to 10-5 with the loss, tossed 5 1/3 innings, allowing two earned runs on six hits. Merrill gave up three hits over an inning and a third in relief, with one strikeout and one base on balls.

Springfield will now advance to play either Rowan Sunday at 10 a.m. in another elimination game.

Rowan 2, St. Joseph’s 0

BABSON PARK, Mass.—Junior Jennifer Arcella hit a two-run home run in the top of the fifth inning and classmate Krysti Maronski fired a five-hit shutout as second-seeded Rowan University staved off elimination with a 2-0 win over fifth-seeded St. Joseph’s College at the Babson Park Regional on Saturday afternoon at Alumni Field.

The Profs, moved to 39-8 while St. Joseph’s finished at 34-13.

Maronski, who has a 0.84 ERA on the year, earned her fifth shutout of the season, striking out seven and walking one in the complete-game victory. First-year Shilah Snead had three hits to lead the Profs.

Seniors Danyelle Shufelt and Heather Tripp each had two hits to lead the Monks. Sophomore Kim Jordan, who played stellar defense at third base, added a single.

Kayla Vannah took the loss for the Monks, allowing the two runs on six hits while striking out two and walking one over 4 1/3 innings to fall to 11-8 on the season. Junior Rae-Marie Copan allowed just two hits over 2 2/3 innings of work.

WOMEN’S LACROSSE

Mount Holyoke 16, USM 6

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. — Sophomore Kirsten Kilburn scored a game-high five goals and senior goalie Liz Malenfant made 11 saves to led the Mount Holyoke College Lyons to a 16-6 win over the University of Southern Maine Huskies in a semifinals of the ECAC Division III New England Championships hosted by Western New England College Saturday afternoon in Springfield, Mass.

Seeded second in the tourney, Mount Holyoke improves to 12-4 with the win and advances to play in the ECAC Championship game on Sunday at 1 p.m. against top-seeded Western New England. Western New England defeated Worcester State 17-11. The loss concludes the Huskies season with a 12-8 record. The Huskies 12 wins are a school record, surpassing the previous record of 11-win set in 2010.

TCNJ 11, Colby 9

HARTFORD, Conn. —- The Colby College streak of reaching three straight NCAA Division III Tournament women’s lacrosse quarterfinal rounds ended Saturday after falling 11-9 to The College of New Jersey in a second-round game at Trinity College.

Colby ends the season at 13-5 overall, losing only to top-10 teams. The Lions go to 15-4 overall and will meet top-ranked Trinity on Sunday at 1 p.m. in a regional final for a berth in the NCAA Final Four. Trinity coasted to a 19-2 win over Augustanta (Ill.) in the other second-round game.

Tess Petesch had three goals in her final game to lead the Mules, who had a 30-20 shot advantage and a 13-3 margin in ground balls. Three-time All-American Kate Pistel also played her final contest, scoring twice and dishing one assist to go over 150 career points. She finished her career with 110 goals and 41 assists for 151 points.

College of New Jersey used a four-goal run to take an 11-6 lead and then held off a spirited Colby comeback attempt over the final six minutes. Tess Petesch scored unassisted for the Mules with 24:29 to play in the game to cut the Lions’ lead to 7-6. College of New Jersey scored four four straight goals from 24:01 to 14:46 to play to pull away for an 11-6 margin.

MEN’S LACROSSE

UNE 12, WIT 10

BIDDEFORD, Maine — Junior Pat Wolfe scored a match-high five goals to lead top-seeded University of New England to a 12-10 victory over No. 2 Wentworth Institute of Technology in the title game of the 2013 Eastern College Athletic Conference Division III Men’s Lacrosse Championship Saturday afternoon at the Big Blue Turf.

The championship is the Nor’easters’ first title in program history, while both teams conclude their seasons with school-record win totals. UNE finishes at 14-5 and Wentworth closes with an 11-7 mark.

Wolfe, who was chosen Most Outstanding Player of the Game, tallied three of his five markers in the fourth quarter to help UNE fend off a furious Wentworth comeback.

Junior Dan O’Gorman contributed three goals and two assists for the Nor’easters while sophomore Eddie Burke scored twice. Senior Tyler Thomas had one goal and two assists to end his career as the Nor’easters’ career leader in goals scored (137), assists (95) and total points (232).

http://bangordailynews.com/2013/05/11/sports/late-rally-helps-springfield-eliminate-husson-in-ncaa-div-iii-softball-tourney/ printed on August 2, 2014