GORHAM, Maine – Junior Jake Dexter (Oakland, Maine/Messalonksee) was 4-for-4 at the plate with two runs scored and an RBI and earned his 11th save of the season at the No. 16/18 University of Southern Maine Huskies extended their win streak to seven games with a 5-2 win over the Bowdoin College Polar Bears in a non-conference baseball game Tuesday afternoon at Ed Flaherty Field.
With the win, Southern Maine is now 25-8 overall and 12-1 at home this season. The win marked the 999th career win for Hall of Fame coach Ed Flaherty in his 33rd season with the Huskies. Flaherty is in line to become just the 11th coach in NCAA Division III history to reach the 1000 win milestone with five games remaining in the regular season.
Trailing 2-1 through four and a half innings following a two-run home run from Bowdoin freshman Brendan O'Neil (Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla./Trinity-Pawling School) in the top of the third, Southern Maine rallied for the game tying run in the fifth and then scored three runs in the bottom of the seventh to earn its seventh consecutive victory.
Dexter collected one of his four hits in the bottom of the fifth with a one-out single up the middle, and then used his speed to come-around from first and score off of an RBI double to the game in left field from sophomore Andrew Olszak (Danver, Mass.).
Dexter again led off the Huskies' scoring rally in the seventh with another one-out single, this time to left field. Advancing to third on a single to right field from Olszak, both Dexter and Olszak completed a two-out double steal and Dexter beat the tag at home for the go-ahead run and a 3-2 USM advantage. The Huskies added two more runs on a base hit from sophomore Anthony Degifico (South Portland, Maine) and a Bowdoin throwing error to score Olszak, and an RBI single up the middle from senior Kyle Heath (Westbrook, Maine).
In the eighth, junior Tanner Laberge (Windham, Maine) came on to the mound as one of six Husky pitchers used in the game and recorded the first two outs on back-to-back strikeouts. After giving up a single and issuing a base runner with a hit-by-pitch, Dexter and Laberge swapped positions from second to pitcher. Dexter record the final out of the inning with a ground out and then retired the Polar Bears in order on back-to-back grounders and a strikeout for the save.
The Huskies' pitching staff combined to limit Bowdoin to just six hits in the game, while allowing five walks. Sophomore Colton Lawrence (Farmington, Maine/Mt. Blue) earned the win pitching a solid sixth inning. Bowdoin's Colby Lewis (Franklin, Mass.) took the loss, allowing two earned runs on five hits and a walk in two innings pitched.
Southern Maine hosts Bates in a non-conference game on Wednesday (3:30 p.m.).
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