PSU Baseball drops two to Southern Maine in home opener

PSU Baseball drops two to Southern Maine in home opener

Garnett homers twice for Panthers in first game; Krajewski goes deep in nightcap

            PLYMOUTH, N.H. – The Plymouth State University baseball team put up a tough battle against Little East Conference-leading University of Southern Maine Saturday afternoon, but the Huskies took both ends of the doubleheader, 6-3 and 8-6 in 12 innings at Panther Park.

            Sophomore Jake Dexter (Oakland, Maine) had three hits at the plate for the Huskies in the opener, and then came on to pitch the ninth inning and record his seventh save.  Junior Sam Stauble (Harrison, Maine), freshman Dylan Hapworth (Winslow, Maine) and senior Paul McDonough (Wells, Maine) all hit home runs for USM, while senior James Garnett (Newport, R.I.) hit two home runs for Plymouth State.

            The Huskies, ranked third in New England, won the second game with two runs in the top of the 12th on a sacrifice fly by sophomore Kip Richard (Kennebunk, Maine) and a sacrifice bunt by freshman Andrew Olszak (Danvers, Mass.). The Panthers forced extra innings with a run in the bottom of the ninth inning when senior Eric Leitch (Lanesboro, Mass.) blasted a clutch two-out RBI double off the right-center field fence that almost went over it for a game-winning home run.

            The losses drop PSU to 12-13 overall and 3-6 in the Little East, while USM extended its winning streak to15 games and improved to 22-7 overall, 9-0 in LEC play.



NCAA College Baseball – Little East Conference

at Panther Park, Plymouth, N.H. – Saturday, April 22, 2017

Southern Maine 6, Plymouth State 3

Southern Maine 8, Plymouth State 6 (12 innings)

Records: Plymouth State 12-13 (3-6 LEC); Southern Maine 22-7 (9-0 LEC)



* The Huskies struck early with single runs in the first two innings and three in the third. Stauble hit a solo home run in the first inning, Richard brought home a run with a sac fly in the second, senior Matt Bender (Walpole, Mass.) singled home a run in the third, and Hapworth blasted a two-run home to left to make it 5-0.

* Garnett hit his first round-tripper of the game and the season in the bottom of the third inning to put PSU on the board. He added a solo shot in the sixth inning the cut the margin to 5-3, but the Huskies added an insurance run in the eighth on McDonough's homer to left.

* Sophomore Dalton Rice (Waterford, Maine) earned the win for USM (4-1), working 6.2 innings and allowing just three runs on four hits and three walks, striking out 12. Sophomore David Sampson (Bellingham, Mass.) went eight innings for PSU and struck out five but took the loss.

* Garnett finished with three hits and three RBI for the Panthers.



* After senior Jarek Krajewski (Cranston, R.I.) homered for PSU in the second inning to give PSU an early lead, Southern Maine put up three runs in the third inning, one in the fourth and two in the fifth. Stauble had an RBI single in the third before Dexter knocked in a run with an infielder grounder and Hapworth scored on a wild pitch. Sophomore Zach Quintal (Eliot, Maine) hit a solo home run with two out in the fourth, and sophomore Devin Warren (Smithfield, Maine) hit a sac fly and McDonough scored on a double steal to push the lead to 6-1.

* PSU got back in the game with three runs in the bottom of the fifth. Freshman Andrew Salta (Laconia, N.H.) hit a two-run double to center and Leitch later brought Salta home with a sac fly to left. The Panthers came all the way back to tie the game with an RBI single by sophomore Josh Goulet (Nashua, N.H.) and Leitch's clutch hit in the ninth.

* McDonough walked to lead off the game-winning rally in the 12th inning for USM. Dexter followed with a single, and a PSU error on a sacrifice attempt loaded the bases with no one out. Richard brought home the first run with a fly ball to center field, and Olszak laid down a perfect bunt to score the second run.

* Dexter pitched 5.1 innings of relief for USM and picked up the win (3-1), despite giving up the tying run in the ninth. He allowed just one run on five hits and three walks, fanning eight. Junior Ryan Perro (Glen Head, N.Y.) worked seven impressive innings of relief for PSU, allowing just two runs on four hits and three walks, striking out three, but suffered his first loss of the season (0-1).



* PSU gets right back into action Sunday with a non-conference home game vs. New England College (12 noon). USM returns to the diamond Tuesday with a Little East Conference meeting at UMass Boston (3 p.m.)

-- 30 --