GORHAM, Maine -- Sophomores John Carey (South Portland, Maine) and Matt Verrier (Norway, Maine/Oxford Hills) each had four RBI as the University of Southern Maine pounded out 18 hits en route to a 15-4 victory over the Rhode Island College Anchormen in an elimination game of the 2012 Little East Conference Baseball Championship Tournament being played at the USM Baseball Stadium.
The win moves the Huskies into Game 10 of the six-team, double-elimination tournament, and improved their overall 25-17. The Anchormen finished the tournament with a 1-2 mark, and concluded their season 26-17.
The Huskies will play Keene State College in Game 10 of the tournament starting at 11:00 a.m. on Sunday. The winner of that game moves into the championship game against Plymouth State University at 2:00 p.m. All three teams have one loss.
Carey went 2 for 5 with two runs scored and four RBI while Verrier was 2 for 4 with two runs scored and four RBI. Every member of the Huskies lineup at least one hit. Junior Nick Grady (Whitefield, Maine/Erskine) and sophomore Troy Thibodeau (Danvers, Mass.) led the attack with three hits apiece.
Senior left-handed pitcher Greg Holmes (West Newbury, Mass./Central Catholic) started for the Huskies and went 5.1 innings to pick up his first win of the season. Holmes gave up seven hits and three walks while striking out two.
Freshman Dean Grasso (Cranston, R.I./LaSalle Academy) led the Anchormen with three hits, including a double, and senior Dan Hopkins (Cranston, R.I./Cranston West) had a pair of safeties. Grasso finished the tournament going 9 for 14 at the plate.
Freshman right-hander Dylan Cummiskey (Warwick, R.I./Toll Gate) was saddled with the loss. Cummiskey surrendered four hits, two walks and hit two batters to give up five runs in 2.1 innings before being lifted.
The Huskies blew the game open early scoring six times on the third inning and four more times in the fourth inning to take an 11-0 lead. Carey and Verrier each had two-run singles in the third inning, and Verrier had another two-run single in the fourth.
(Courtesy of Plymouth State Sports Information)
Plymouth State 9, Keene State 2
Plymouth State University's amazing run in the Little East Conference Baseball Tournament continued Saturday as the sixth-seeded Panthers defeated second-seeded Keene State College, 9-2, in Game 9 of Little East Conference Baseball Tournament, hosted by the University of Southern Maine.
The Panthers (20-21), who were facing elimination with a loss, advance to their first LEC championship game Sunday at 2:00 p.m. PSU, which prior to this week hadn't won an LEC Tournament game since 2001, has now captured three wins in four days over the #1, #2 and #4 seeds. Keene State (31-12), previously the only undefeated team in the tournament, will play again Sunday in Game 10 at 11:00 a.m. against top-seeded USM; the winner of Game 10 will meet Plymouth State at 2:00 for the championship.
Sophomore Jeff Runnals (Wolfeboro, N.H./Kingswood) and junior Rew Wilson (Niantic, Conn./East Lyme) did a masterful job pitching for PSU. Runnals started and recorded the win for the Panthers, pitching 5-1/3 innings and allowing just two runs on seven hits, striking out four, while Wilson earned the save, pitching the final 3-2/3 scoreless innings and giving up just three hits and a walk.
Freshman David Foote (North Andover, Mass.) cracked a two-run triple to highlight a four-run fourth inning that put PSU up for good. Junior David Tammaro (Cheshire, Conn.) and sophomore Brendan Cosgrove (Merirmack, N.H.) also had RBI hits in the inning.
PSU pulled away with two runs in the fifth, one in the sixth and two more in the seventh. Junior Steve Beard (Middleton, Mass.) and Tammaro knocked in runs in the fifth, Runnals drove one home in the sixth, and freshman Paul Reny (Portland, Maine) and Runnals added RBIs in the seventh.
The Panthers finished with 15 hits in the game. Beard had three hits while Foote, Reny, senior Ryan McIntosh (Lincoln, N.H.) and sophomore Spencer Webb (Warwick, R.I.) collected two hits each.