DANVILLE, Virginia - The University of Maine at Presque Isle men's baseball team dropped a pair of games in a double-header against Averett University on Friday afternoon in non-conference action. With the two loses, 5-4 and 19-1, the Owls move to 0-7 on the year.
In the first game of the day, both teams remained scoreless until the bottom of the third inning, when the Courgars earned a run to take the 1-0 lead. UMPI rallied in the next two innings. In the top of the fourth, Carlos Villoria (Caracas, Venezuela) reached first on a fielding error by the shortstop, then advanced to second off a Corey Harding (Plymouth, ME)single up the middle of the field. Villoria stole third, while Harding was caught stealing at second. Alex Cisernik (Hamilton, ON) earned an RBI single, scoring Villoria to tie the game at 1-1.
In the top of the next inning, lead-off batter Shane Smith (Farmington, ME) grounded out to third base to gain the team's first inning out. Lucas Morrell (Lovell, ME) then singled to right center field to kick off the inning. Stephan Thorne (Dalhousie, NB) followed Morrell's hit with a pop up to short stop for the second out of the inning, which set the stage for Villoria, who slammed a two-run homer over the left field fence. Harding popped up to second base to end the two-run inning, with the Owls taking the 3-1 lead heading in to the bottom of the fifth.
Averett University answered, earning three runs off three hits and one UMPI error in the fifth, regaining the lead at 4-3. The Cougars scored again in the bottom of the sixth, increasing their lead at 5-3. The Owls rallied in the seventh; Matt Nadeau (Auburn, ME) pinched hit for Smith, and reached first on a throwing error. Morrell struck out swinging for the first out of the inning. Stephan Thorne doubled to left center field, advancing Nadeau to third. With runners at second and third, Villoria earned a sacrifice single scoring Nadeau to bring the game to within one run. Thorne advanced to third on the play. Corey Harding grounded out to second base to end the inning, while UMPI earned the 5-4 loss.
Left-hand hurler, Jordan Perry (Baileyville, ME), earned the loss in 4.2 innings of action from the mound; Perry allowed four runs off five hits, while striking out seven and walking two batters. Jake Fillebrown (Stoneham, ME) saw relief for 1.1 innings; Fillebrown allowed one run off two hits, while striking out two and walking none.
In the second game of the afternoon, the Cougars roared past the Owls in a 19-1 decision. UMPI earned their sole run in the top of the second inning.
Anthony Batchelder (Enfield, ME) led the Owls in the game, going 2-for-2 from the plate, while Matt Nadeau was awarded the team's only RBI of the game. Stephen Thorne went 1-for-2 from the plate, while Justin Bergeron (Tiverton, RI) and Brian Andrews (Fort Fairfield, ME) both earned both singled in the game.
Andrew Carter (Charlo, ME) earned the loss on the day in 3.0 innings from the mound; Carter allowed nine runs off eight hits, while walking one and striking out one. Evan Kingsbury (Frankfort, ME), Ryan Thompson (East Millinocket, ME), Seth Cote (Otis, ME),Andy Brown (Princeton, ME), and Tyler Sission (Plaster Rock, NB) all saw relief in the game.
UMPI's scheduled game against Southern Virginia University was cancelled for Saturday, February 26th. The Owls head back to Presque Isle having competed in seven games on their Virginia road trip. They return to action on March 19th, as the team heads to Wilkes-Barre, PA to battle against King's College in a single-game. Game time is at 2:00 pm.