CLEARWATER, Fla. — Shelby Obert and Maddie Moore hit RBI singles during a two-out, two-run rally in the fourth inning Monday that lifted the University of Maine softball team to a 2-1 victory over Cleveland State.
Kylie Sparks pitched a four-hitter and struck out four to help the Black Bears improve to 5-5.
Cleveland State got on the board in the third when Cynthia Woodward scored Janessa Rivera Keahi with a two-out single.
UMaine responded with two runs in the fourth. EmJ Fogel ignited the rally with a two-out double and scored on Obert’s single. Obert, who advanced on the throw to the plate, came home on Moore’s single.
Husson earns split
At Auburndale, Fla., Husson University opened the season with a split, edging Albion 6-5 in eight innings after being shut out 7-0 by Illinois Wesleyan.
In the second game, Sami Schultz singled to left field with one out in the eighth inning to score Haley Spiers and give the Eagles the margin of victory. Spiers was placed on second and moved up on Lyndsey Merr’s sacrifice bunt.
Kayla Merrill retired the side in order after a runner was placed on second to help Husson wrap up the win. She gave up six hits and went the route.
Jess Poulin paced the Eagles’ 16-hit attack with two singles and two RBIs and Schultz collected a double and three singles and Jess Poulin posted two singles and two RBIs. Merrill (triple, single) and Spiers (2 singles) each drove in a run.
Julia Anderson had a single and two RBIs for 0-2 Albion.
In the first game, Jenna Noland pitched a three-hit shutout with 14 strikeouts and no walks to lead Illinois Wesleyan to victory.
Danielle Burge knocked in two runs with a double for the winners, who broke the game open with three runs in the fifth and two in the sixth.
Kayla Merrill and Chelsea Brennan stroked doubles for Husson, while Amanda Ryan spaced nine hits with three strikeouts while going the distance.
Track and Field
UM athletes shine
Jimmy Reed and Jake Leithiser of the UMaine men’s track and field team turned in strong performances over the weekend at the ECAC/IC4A indoor championships held at Boston University.
Reed, a senior, was the runner-up in the 60-meter hurdles. He broke his own school record in the event with a time of 7.92 seconds, two-tenths better than his previous mark.
Reed was clocked in 7.919 seconds, only seven-thousandths of a second behind Cornell’s Max Hairston, who was timed in 7.912.
Leithiser took second in the 500 meters. The sophomore from Old Town posted a time of 1:03.28, well behind winner Robert Rhodes of Connecticut (1:02.02).
Senior Justin Gagne of Biddeford placed eighth in the shot put with a throw of 55 feet, 6½ inches.
In women’s action, senior Jessica McCarthy finished 10th among 15 entries in the pentathlon.