HARWICH, Mass. — Sophomore Sam Dexter scored the go-ahead run on a wild pitch in the eighth inning to give the second-seeded University of Southern Maine Huskies a come-from-behind, 3-2 victory over the third-seeded Tufts University Jumbos in a winners’ bracket game of the 2014 NCAA Division III Harwich Regional Tournament Thursday night at Whitehouse Field.
The win moves the Huskies (33-12) into a winners’ bracket game against Endicott College on Friday (4:30 p.m.). USM and Endicott are the final two unbeaten teams in the eight-team, double-elimination tournament. The game is a rematch of last year’s two regional finalists. The Jumbos (34-8) will face an elimination game against fifth-seeded M.I.T. on Friday (1 p.m.).
Dexter led off the eighth with his third hit of the game, and moved to second when senior Chris Bernard’s ground ball was misplayed for an error.
After a strikeout, Dexter took third on senior Troy Thibodeau’s fielder’s choice. Thibodeau would steal second before junior Jake Glauser walked to load the bases. While facing senior pinch hitter Forrest Chadwick, Tufts junior Willie Archibald uncorked a wild pitch that allowed Dexter to score. Archibald regrouped after walking Chadwick to get out of the inning without further damage.
USM junior right-hander Andrew Richards escaped a minor jam in the eighth, and a two-out, bases loaded situation in the ninth to earn his fifth win of the season against one loss.
USM took a 1-0 in the fourth inning as three consecutive singles by senior John Carey, Dexter and Bernard produced a run.
Tufts scored twice in the fifth to take a 2-1 lead. A two-out infield throwing error kept the inning alive for the Jumbos. McCallum brought home the first run with an infield single, and senior Wade Hauser singled home the go ahead run. McCallum was cut down at the plate on a relay from Glauser to rookie Paul McDonough to senior Matt Verrier to end the frame.
The Huskies equalized in the sixth as Carey reached on an error. Dexter advanced Carey with a single to left field. Verrier’s one-out fielder’s choice cut down Carey at third. Thibodeau then singled to center on a 3-2 offering to bring home Dexter with the tying run.
Senior right-hander Lincoln Sanborn scattered nine hits over 7 ⅔ innings to help Saint Joseph’s College eliminate Worcester State 4-2 in the NCAA DIII New England Baseball Regional Tournament at Whitehouse Field on Thursday afternoon.
St. Joseph’s (29-14) advanced to another elimination game against Mitchell College at 9:30 a.m. Friday. Worcester State finished at 25-17.
Sanborn (7-1) allowed two runs and a walk while striking out three for the Monks, who broke a scoreless tie in the third inning.
Max McCoomb hit a one-out single to right and advanced to third on a hit-and-run with Louie Vigars. They then executed a double steal, with McCoomb scoring and Vigars continuing to third on an errant throw. Vigars then scored when Nic Lops singled.
Worcester State added a run in the seventh on an RBI groundout by Steve Wallace, but the Monks answered with an RBI single by Taylor Black.
Worcester State added another run in the eighth when Jeff Bolio doubled and scored on Jake Ryan’s RBI single.
The Monks responded again with their fourth run when Joe Coyne hit an RBI double.
Monks’ reliever Corey McNamara got the final out of the eighth inning and set down the side in order in the ninth for his fifth save of the season.