PORT CHARLOTTE, Fla. – Western Michigan junior righthander Chad Mayle shut out the Maine Black Bears for six innings en route to a 4-1 victory for the Broncos in baseball action Friday at North County Park.
Mayle, a junior college transfer, earned his first victory with Western Michigan as he scattered eight hits while walking two and striking out two before receiving relief help from Derek Schneider and Gabe Berman, who earned a save.
Senior righthander Tommy Lawrence turned in a solid outing for the Black Bears but his recorded dipped to 0-4 as the Broncos reached him for four earned runs and eight hits in seven innings while he gave up three walks and struck out six.
The Black Bears threatened by loading the bases in the bottom of the ninth inning, but was able to push across only one run.
Western Michigan improved to 6-7 and Maine dropped to 3-9.
Western Maine secured its fourth straight victory and sixth in the last eight games. During the streak, the Broncos have scored 26 runs and have a team ERA of 2.73.
Western Michigan jumped out to a 1-0 lead in the top of the first inning. Grant Miller was hit by a pitch and moved to third when Kurt Hoekstra doubled. He scored when Jared Kujawa grounded out. The Broncos added a run in the run in the top of the second inning. Steve Buglione singled through the right side and scored when Vinnnie Booker doubled down the left-field line.
They added two more runs in the top of the fifth. Miller walked and Hoekstra followed with a double down the right-field line. Both runners scored when Brett Sunde singled to center field.
Maine got its lone run in the bottom of the ninth inning. Singles by Troy Black, Scott Heath and Brenden Geary loaded the bases and Black scored on a sacrifice by Alex Calbick.
Maine relievers Shaun Coughlin and Logan Fullmer each pitched a scoreless inning with Coughlin striking out two in the eighth.
The Black Bears continue their southern series in Port Charlotte on Saturday with a noon game against Presbyterian, followed by a 3 p.m. contest against South Dakota State. They play South Dakota State again at 11 a.m. Sunday.