So. ME Sweeps Keene State, Clinch Second Place
|GORHAM, ME;The University of Southern
ME Huskies came from behind after blowing a five-run lead to defeat
the Keene State College Owls, 8-7, in ten innings in the first game
of the teams' Little East Conference doubleheader Saturday
afternoon at Towers Field.|
The Huskies raced out to a three-run lead in the second game, then hung on for a 3-2 victory to complete the sweep.
The two wins clinched second place and a bye for the Huskies in the upcoming Little East Conference championship tournament. USM is 24-13-1 overall and 9-3-1 in the conference with a game Sunday at UMA Boston. Keene State dipped to 21-16 overall and 9-5 in the LEC. The Owls will be the fourth seed in the tournament and host a first-round, single-elimination game against the University of MAachusetts Dartmouth on Tuesday. The four-team, double-elimination finals start Thursday at top seeded Eastern Connecticut State University.
In the opener, USM jumped out to a 5-0 lead after two innings, only to see the Owls score four times in the seventh to take a 7-6 lead. The Huskies tied the game in the ninth when senior Ryan Adams (Sanford, ME) doubled with two outs, advanced to third on an infield error and scored on senior Jon Melanson's (Portland, ME) single. Adams drove in the winning run in the 10th inning when he beat out a bases-loaded, two-out, infield single.
Keene State had taken the lead in the seventh on a two-out,
pinch-hit single by senior Kelly Charbono (Enfield, N.H.). The Owls had 14 hits against Adams, who went 8.1 before moving to second base, but none
after Charbono's hit.
In the nightcap, the Huskies staked sophomore starter Jason
Thibodeau (Old Town, ME) to a 3-0 lead with single runs in the second, third, and fourth innings. Junior Andy Lang (New Bedford, MA.) doubled home the run in the second inning run and scored in the fourth on sophomore Darrin Daniels' (Millinocket, ME) double. Junior Derek Meader (Portland, ME) drove in the other USM run with a sacrifice fly.
Keene State rallied for a run in the eighth an RBI single by junior Ben Tyer (Lee, MA.). Freshman Pat Austin (Wallingford, CT) walked with the bases loaded in the ninth to force home another run, but the Owls could not get the equalizer. Keene State left the bases loaded in both the eighth and ninth innings.
For Southern ME, junior Pat Liddy (Wilton, ME) picked up the win in first game with one inning of relief, then came back in the second game to collect a save. Thibodeau picked up his fourth win of the season against two losses in the nightcap.
Tyer was tagged with the loss in the first game while junior Buzzy Francis (Bedford, N.H.) went the distance in the second game for the Owls.