STANDISH, Maine - Plymouth State University stopped a 12-game season-opening winning streak by Saint Joseph's College on Sunday, edging the Monks 9-8 at Mahaney Diamond and earning a split of the non-conference doubleheader. Saint Joe's had improved to 12-0 this spring with an 11-3 victory over the Panthers in the first game of the day.
The Panthers pulled out the nightcap thanks to some strong bullpen work from sophomore Adam Neshe (Framingham, Mass.) and junior Chip Hale (Londonderry, N.H.). After Saint Joseph's had pounded out 11 runs on 12 hits in the opener and seven runs on six hits in the first three innings of game two, Neshe and Hale shut the Monks down over the next four innings, allowing only one run and four hits. Neshe went three innings and allowed only one run to earn his first win of the season (1-1) and Hale worked a scoreless seventh inning for his first save.
The Monks scored in every inning but the second in the first game, finishing with 11 runs and 12 hits. After two runs in each the first and third frames and single runs in the fourth and fifth, Saint Joe's exploded with five runs in the sixth inning to put the game away.
PSU scored two runs in the fourth inning, which at the time made it a 4-2 game. Senior Josh Labossiere (Lincoln, R.I.) doubled and classmate Craig Carpenter (Holderness, N.H./Nashua H.S.) singled to start the inning. Labossiere came home on a passed ball, and Carpenter came around on a single by senior Jamie Aceto (Cumberland, R.I.)
The Panthers erupted for seven runs in the top of the first inning of the nightcap. Freshman Jared LeClaire (Portsmouth, N.H./Winnacunnet) led off with a home run, and junior John Pogorzelski (Hillsborough, N.J.) cracked a two-out grand slam later in the inning to make it 5-0. PSU didn't stop there, batting around and LeClaire delivering a two-run double to give him two extra-base hits and three RBI in the inning.
Saint Joe's came back to tie the game with single runs in the bottom of the first and second innings and a five-spot in the third. The Panthers got the lead back in the top of the fourth when Labossiere and Carpenter led off with singles and eventually scored on a clutch two-out, two-run hit by senior Steve Campo (Londonderry, N.H.) Neshe and Hale did the rest to preserve the Panther victory.
PSU, 4-10 overall, returns to action Wednesday with a key Little East Conference game at rival Keene State College (3:30 p.m.)
(Courtesy of Saint Joseph's Sports Information)
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