|University of Maine||Monmouth University|
WEST LONG BRANCH, N.J. – The University of Maine baseball team jumped out to an early lead but ultimately fell to Monmouth, 7-3, in non-conference action on Saturday at MU Baseball Field.
Danny Casals finished the day 2-for-4 with two doubles while Hernen Sardinas and Caleb Kerbs were both 2-for-3. Jeremy Pena also added one hit. Pena, Casals and Sardinas scored the runs for the Black Bears.
With one out in the first, Casals doubled to right centerfield and then two batters later Christopher Bec’s ball to third base forced an error that allowed Casals to score.
Maine pushed its lead out with a two-run third inning, thanks to a long ball from Sardinas. After Pena singled through the left side with one out, Sardinas came to the plate two batters later and sent the ball over the fence in right-center.
Unfortunately, Maine’s lead would not hold as the Hawks were able to answer in the bottom half of the frame. After Monmouth loaded the bases, Kyle Norman’s triple to center cleared the bases to tie it up, 3-3.
One run for the Hawks in the fourth on a sacrifice fly gave them a one-run edge but it would end up being enough for the win, too. The hosts would go on to add one run in the sixth, capitalizing on a fielding error, before a two-run home run in the eighth made it 7-3.
The Black Bears had a chance to push some runs across in the top of the eighth, as Casals doubled down the left field line and Sardinas moved him to third with a single. However, the Monmouth starter, Ricky Dennis, got out of the jam.
Nick Silva started for Maine, pitching 6.0 innings while allowing four runs on six hits in taking the loss. Chris Murphy, Jonah Normandeau and Matt Geoffrion made relief appearances for Maine (10-23) while Monmouth got a win out of Dennis and a save from Austin Counsellor.
Maine is back in action on Wednesday afternoon with a 4 p.m. game against St. Joseph’s of Maine at Mahaney Diamond.