NORTHBOROUGH, MA – A late offensive surge gave the University of Maine at Presque Isle Owls (2-8) an 11-3 game one decision before dropping the nightcap by a score of 6-2 to the Newbury College Nighthawks (3-1).
Game 1 – UMPI def. Newbury 11-3
It was the Nighthawks that jumped out to an early lead, plating two runs on two hits in the bottom of the first. The Owls would answer back when Adam Begos (SR, Westbrook, ME) would drive in a run with an RBI double down the right field line. Newbury would take advantage of a lead-off double in the second to plate another run, but the Owls had an answer in the bottom half. Brady Rowe (SR, Halifax, NS) would continue his hot weekend at the plate by leading off with a single. The wind and a well hit ball that resulted in a fielding error would set up runners on second and third with no one out. Matt Curry (SO, Caribou, ME) would drive in Rowe with a groundball to second, and Matt Cauchon (SO, Kingston, MA) scored on a wild pitch, tying the game at 3.
Both pitchers would settle in and keep the offenses off balance for the next couple of innings. It wasn't until the bottom of the sixth that UMPI would be able to break the tie. With the bases loaded, Curry would single into right, driving in two runs. With two outs, freshman Jacob Powell (Frankfort, ME) would knock in two more runs with an RBI single to left, giving the Owls a four run lead. Rowe would add a 2 RBI single in the seventh as the Owls would tack on four more insurance runs to seal the win.
Curry pitched a complete game and took the win for UMPI, striking out two, walking four, and giving up just five hits in his seven innings of work. Mitchell Walsh (SO, Westport, MA) was credited with the loss in relief, with seven of the eight runs he gave up being earned.
Rowe would lead the offensive charge, going three for five with two RBI and three runs scored. Cauchon would end up scoring three runs as well, going two for four with a double and an RBI. Curry would drive in three runs, while Powell would be credited with two RBI.
Game 2 – Newbury def. UMPI 6-2
The Owls' offense picked up where it left off from game one, jumping on the board early by plating two in the first. The Owls only had one hit, but managed to put some pressure on the Nighthawk defense who committed two errors in the inning to put UMPI on top.
The second inning looked as though the Owls were going to continue to keep the bats going as Jesus Garcia (SO, Jewett City, CT) led off with a single. Senior Tommy Collins (Pembroke, ME) would line a hard hit ball to right field, but with a hit and run on and the right fielder perfectly positioned, a double play squelched the offense. From there Nighthawk starter Tim Brown (JR, Orange, CT) would settle in and silence the Owls. In six innings he would strike out eight, walk one, and surrender just four hits.
The Nighthawks would do their damage in the fourth and fifth, scoring three runs in each inning. The big blow was off the bat of Brian Rhone (JR, North Haven, CT) who would hit a two RBI single in the fourth to get the scoring started for Newbury.
Sophomore Saul Nunez (Mapleton, ME) took the loss on the mound for UMPI. In five innings he gave up ten hits, all six runs, and walked no one, while striking out four.
"Our pitching staff did a great job throughout the series giving us chances to win games," said Head Coach Mike Pankow. "Our offense showed signs of what it is capable of here tonight, but we need more consistency from our bats. Once we get there we will be a very dangerous team."
The Owls will return to Northborough on March 19th and 20th to take on Anna Maria in a four game series. Those doubleheaders will start at noon on both days.