1991 & 1997 NCAA Division III National Champions

Southern Maine Downs Bates 6-1

Senior David Ricker had three hits and stole three bases Wednesday in the Huskies 6-1 win over Bates.
Senior David Ricker had three hits and stole three bases Wednesday in the Huskies 6-1 win over Bates.

            GORHAM, Maine -- Senior David Ricker (Winthrop, Maine) had three hits and scored a pair of runs as the University of Southern Maine Huskies defeated the Bates College Bobcats 6-1 in a non-conference game at the USM Baseball Stadium Wednesday afternoon.

            The win was the fourth straight for the Huskies, and improved their record to 20-16 overall.  The Bobcats, who came into the game riding a six-game winning streak, fall to 21-16.

            Ricker reached base all four times he batted.  He sparked a four-run first inning with a lead off with a single.  He had a single in the second inning, a double in the fourth and he walked in the sixth.  Ricker also stole three bases.

            Junior Tucker White (Deerfield, N.H./Coe-Brown Northwood) was the only other USM hitter with a pair of hits in the game.  Junior Nick Grady (Whitefield, Maine/Erskine) scored two runs and had a two-run single in the first inning.

            Bates, led by junior Ryan Sonberg (Windsor, Conn./Suffield Academy), out hit USM 10-8.  Sonberg was a perfect 4 for 4 on the day.  Senior Mike Ciummei (Acton, Mass./Phillips Andover), sophomore Jeffrey Gunn (Atlanta, Ga./St. Pius X) and rookie Nate Pajka Douglas, Mass.) had two hits apiece.

            USM freshman right-hander Alex Tobey (South Berwick, Maine/Berwick Academy) went the first five innings on the hill to pick up his second win of the season.  Tobey gave up five hits, one run and no walks while fanning two.  Four hurlers each pitched an inning of shutout relief.

            Sophomore southpaw Brad Reynolds (Louisville, Colo./Fairview), making his first appearance of the season on the hill, started for Bates and went two innings.  He was tagged with the loss after allowing six hits and four runs.  Junior Mike Antonellis (Sudbury, Mass./Lincoln-Sudbury) pitched four innings in long relief allowing only two hits, no earned runs and one walk. Antonellis struck out three.

            Ricker led off the Huskies' half of the first inning with a single.  Rookie Jake Glauser (Goffstown, N.H.) and White followed with singles to load the bases.  Grady singled home Ricker and Glauser, and White came home on a throwing error.  Grady, who took second on the error, later came around to score on a pair of groundouts.

            Ricker accounted for the Huskies run in the fourth.  He hit a one-out double, stole third and scored on a throwing error.

            Bates touched Tobey for its only run of the game in the fifth.  Three straight singles by Gunn, Pajka and Sonberg loaded the bases.  Rookie Mekae Hyde (Lewiston, Maine) lifted a sacrifice fly to left field scoring Gunn, but Tobey got the next hitter to ground out to escape further trouble.

            The Huskies picked up an unearned run in their half as Grady reached on a fielding error and moved to second on a single by sophomore Forrest Chadwick (Gardiner, Maine).  Grady took third on a fielder's choice, and scored on another fielder's choice as he beat the play at the plate.

            Bates made things interesting in the ninth inning with three consecutive two-out singles by Gunn, Pajka and Sonberg, but USM senior right-hander was able to get the final out on a fly ball to Ricker.

            Southern Maine is back in action tomorrow traveling (4:00 p.m.) to Bowdoin College.  Bates is off until Saturday (12:00 p.m.) when it hosts Williams College for a doubleheader.