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PSU Baseball splits LEC opener at UMass Dartmouth

12-run output lifts Panthers in nightcap

            NORTH DARTMOUTH, Mass. – The Plymouth State University and University of Massachusetts Dartmouth baseball teams split the first Little East Conference games of the season Friday afternoon at the UMD Athletic Complex, the host Corsairs winning the opener, 3-2, and the visiting Panthers the nightcap, 12-6.

            The first game was a pitcher's duel between PSU senior Bobby Chatfield and UMD sophomore Karney Boff. The score was tied 1-1 after seven innings until the Corsairs rallied for two runs in the bottom of the eighth.  Plymouth State got one back in the top of the ninth, but UMD senior closer Pat Lavey got the final two outs to secure the victory.

            Boff earned the win for UMD, throwing 8.1 innings with nine strikeouts and surrendering two runs. Chatfield took the loss, allowing three runs in 7.1 innings of work and also striking out nine. 

            Senior Ryan McIntosh knocked in both PSU runs with RBI singles in the seventh and ninth innings, finishing with three hits.  Senior Luke Merrill and freshman Paul Reny each had two hits, including a double.

            PSU scored runs in four of the first five innings of the nightcap to open up a 10-1 lead.  The Corsairs answered with five runs in the bottom of the fifth, but the Panthers held off the UMD rally and added insurance runs in the eighth and ninth innings.  PSU senior Jonathan Bishop earned the win, pitching 7.2 innings and striking out nine.

            Merrill had three hits to lead the PSU 13-hit attack in the nightcap, including RBI singles in the first and third innings.  Sophomore Jeff Runnals drove in four with a pair of two-run singles, and Reny contributed his first career home run, a two-run shot in the fourth inning.  Juniors Rew Wilson and Brendan Cosgrove also collected two hits apiece.

            McIntosh and senior Mike Cappiello had just one hit each for PSU but combined to reach base eight times and score four runs on four walks and two hit batsmen.

            UMass Dartmouth is now 9-6 overall and 1-1 in the Little East, while PSU is 8-8 and 1-1 in LEC play. Both teams play non-conference games Sunday, the Corsairs hosting Brandeis and the Panthers visiting Babson.           

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