(BANGOR, ME) -- It had been exactly a month since the University of Maine-Presque Isle baseball team took to the field for a game before Saturday's doubleheader at Husson University. The Owls wasted no time finding a rhythm, defeating the Eagles 5-3 in the opener. After falling behind 8-2 in the nightcap, a furious rally fell just short for the visitors as they fell 8-7 and settled for a split.
Husson moved to 3-6 while Presque Isle's record is now 2-8 on the season. The Owls will not have to wait as long for their next games. Next Friday the team will begin a stretch of 11 games in 10 days at Centenary (NJ) College.
Game 1 - UMPI 5, Husson 3 (7 innings)
WP: Worster (1-0)
LP: O'Neil (1-1)
Things looked good for the Eagles early in game one when Brandon Gendreau doubled to left in the bottom of the first putting the Eagles up 1-0.
Presque Isle came storming back in the top of the second, scoring four times on two hits, an error, and a wild pitch. Logan McLaughlin (Fr./Mars Hill, ME) scored the first Owl run on an Eagle error followed by a Justin Bergeron (Jr./Tiverton, RI) single down the left field line scoring Daniel Lewis (Jr./Gardner Mines, Nova Scotia). Stephen Thorne (Sr./Dalhousie, NB), who reached on the first error, then scored on a wild pitch. Carlos Villoria (Sr./Caracas, Venezuela) rounded out the UMPI scoring in the second inning with a single through the right side as Bergeron crossed home plate. UMPI held a 4-1 lead through two.
The Eagles got onto the board once again in the third as Cody McInnis reached on a hit-by-pitch, stole second and also stole third. With two outs and McInnis on third, Pat Thibodeau singled through the left side scoring the Husson shortstop to cut the Owl lead to 4-2.
Presque Isle added another run in the top of the fifth on a Thorne walk with the bases loaded after two hits and a fielder's choice.
Dennis O'Neil threw six innings for the Eagles allowing five runs on eight hits along with two walks and four strikeouts. .
For the Owls, Dylan Worster (Jr./Howland, ME) tossed all seven innings, allowing three runs on ten hits with a walk and three strikeouts.
Game 2 - Husson 8, UMPI 7 (7 innings)
WP: Nason (1-1)
LP: Fillebrown (0-2)
S: Estes (1)
In game two, it was the Owls jumping out to a quick lead thanks to a Tanner Marshall (Fr./Cleburne, TX) single through the right side in the top of the first, scoring Villoria, giving UMPI the early 1-0 lead.
The offensive story in game two for Husson was Josh Gaudette, who homered twice on the afternoon. The first of which came with one out in the bottom of the second to tie the game at 1-1. The Eagles put three spot on the board in the second, scoring on a sacrifice bunt by Cody McInnis, scoring Kyle Bishop. Kyle McLain advanced to third and Andrew Curran to second on the bunt and proceeded to score on the next play as Dylan Foster singled to center. Husson now led 4-1.
The teams traded runs in the 3rd before the Eagles broke things open in the fourth.
Husson added three runs the fourth on a Pat Thibodeau triple to left center that scored Brandon Gendreau who reached on a throwing error and advanced to third. With Thibodeau on third and two outs, Gaudette hit his second long shot of the day, giving his team an 8-2 advantage.
Down by six, the Owls rallied in the 5th. After Bergeron was hit by a pitch to start the frame, Jordan Duffy (Sr./Fort Augustus PEI, Canada) and Villoria followed with singles to load the bases. With the table set, Presque Isle proceeded to score five runs without the benefit of a hit. Joshua Gale (So./Sedgwick, ME) was hit by a pitch to bring in Bergeron. Marshall followed with a walk which brought Duffy home and the deficit was 8-4.
After a pitching change, McLaughlin walked, scoring Villoria. Alex Csiernik (Jr./Hamilton, Ontario) then brought Gale home on an RBI 4-6 fielder's choice. With runners on 1st and 3rd with one out, Cam Morrell (Jr./Harpswell, ME) lifted a flyball to right field deep enough for Marshall to tag and score from 3rd and suddenly the Owls found themselves only down one, 8-7.
That was as close as they could get however as reliever Casey Estes retired the final seven Presque Isle batter in order to preserve the Eagle victory and pick up his first save of the season.
Jake Fillebrown (Sr./Stoneham, ME) started for the Owls and took the loss. Fillebrown went 3.2 IP, gave up 7 ER, walked 4 and struck out 2.
Eagles' starter Tim Nason cruised through the first four innings, only giving up single tallies in the 1st and 3rd. With Estes' help, Husson escaped the 5th with the lead still in tact allowing Nason to notch his first victory of the season.
* Villoria picked up 4 hits in 8 at bats on the afternoon and raised his batting average to .333 on the season. He leads the team with 14 hits.
* The Owls' 5-run fifth inning marked the 2nd time this season the team has scored five or more in a frame. In a 12-11 win over Guilford back on February 19, Presque Isle plated 6 in the second inning.
* During their upcoming spring break road trip, the Owls will make stops for games in New Jersey, Delaware, Pennsylvania, New Hampshire, and Massachusetts.