Six-Run 6th Hurts Owls vs. Eastern
(WAYNE, PA) -- In a see-saw battle that saw six lead changes, it was host Eastern University that managed the last big inning, besting guest UMaine-Presque Isle 9-5 on Wednesday afternoon. The Eagles improve to 7-10 on the season. The Owls' record now stands at 4-12.
Presque Isle jumped out to an early 1-0 lead in the first after Justin Bergeron (Jr./Tiverton, RI) led off the game with a single and two batters later was driven in by a Carlos Villoria (Sr./Caracas, Venezuela) double.
That lead held until the 4th when the Eagles broke through for a pair of runs against Owls' starter Dylan Worster (Jr./Howland, ME).
Presque Isle got the game back to even in the next half inning. With two down and nobody on, Tanner Marshall (Fr./Cleburne, TX) singled to right. Joshua Gale (So./Sedgwick, ME) followed with a single through the left side. Ted Walker (Jr../Caribou, ME) then came up and roped a third straight base hit to right, scoring Marshall and knotting the game at 2-2.
After the Eagles took the lead in the bottom of the 5th on an Eric Rossi single scoring Ryan McMenamin, the Owls once again wasted no time in responding. Jordan Miller came on in relief for EU and was immediately greeted by a Logan McLaughlin (Fr./Mars Hill, ME) home run. Stephen Thorne (Sr./Dalhousie, New Brunswick) was then hit by a pitch and quickly scampered to third on a wild pitch and passed ball, respectively. Bergeron followed by ripping an RBI single to right scoring Thorne. He promptly stole second and went to third on Jordan Duffy's (Sr./Fort Augustus PEI, Canada) infield single. Carlos Villoria (Sr./Caracas, Venezuela) worked the count to 3-0 before grounding into a 4-6-3 double play with Bergeron scoring on the play to give UMPI 3 runs and the lead back, 5-3.
That was the last time the Owls would lead however as the Eagles provided a final answer, scoring six runs in the bottom of the 6th. Amazingly, all six runs came after Worster retired the first two hitters of the inning. With two down and nobody on, the Eagles next 8 batters reached on 3 singles, 3 doubles, and an error against Worster and reliever Adam Geel (Fr./Calais, ME). When it was over, the Owls saw their 5-3 lead turned into a 9-5 deficit.
UMPI made one last stand in the 9th as they took advantage of some wildness on the mound. Marshall led off by getting hit by a pitch. He would eventually come around to score after the Eagles issued 3 walks and a wild pitch. However, with the bases loaded and only one out, Greg Lukasik entered the game for EU and slammed the door by retiring the final two batters.
Worster (1-2) was saddled with the loss. In 5.2 IP, he gave up 7 runs, all earned, walked 1 and struck out 4. EU's Jordan Miller who pitched one inning of relief, was credited with the win, Lukasik picked up the save.
UMPI will play again tomorrow, its 4th game in as many days, when it travels to Western Connecticut State for a 5pm game.
* McLaughlin's home run in the 6th was the first of his collegiate career. He finished the game 2-4 at the plate with 2 RBI.
* Prior to hitting into the doubleplay in the 6th, Villoria had 2 doubles in the game at the time giving him 9 hits in his previous 10 at bats. He finished the game 2-5 with an RBI.
* Jordan Perry (Jr./Baileyville, ME) pitched a perfect inning of relief in the 7th. Perry was able to retire the side in just 5 pitches.
* The Owls 12 hits on the afternoon marked the 6th time this season the team has managed double figures in the "H" column and third time in their past four games.