Black Bear Baseball FTS: Friday to Sunday

MahaneyThe University of Maine baseball team seems to be hitting their stride at exactly the right time.  Heading into this weekend’s regular season-ending series against UMBC at Mahaney Diamond, the Black Bears had won three of their last four games, including a 12-3 victory over Boston College in Sanford on Tuesday.  In addition, Maine had already clinched a berth in the four team America East baseball tournament with last Sunday’s win over Albany.

With the conference tournament set to start on May 22 in Lowell, MA, Maine headed into this weekend’s three game set against UMBC hoping to build even more momentum leading into the postseason, while sending the squad’s seniors off on a winning note for their final series in Orono.

In a fitting way to end the regular season, Maine’s schedule was, once again, altered by the weather.  Mother Nature decided she didn’t want to see any baseball in Orono on Saturday, causing the series finale to be moved to Sunday morning.  Despite one final helping of meterological adversity, the Black Bears managed to post another series win, taking two of three from UMBC to finish the regular season 24-27 overall and 10-11 in America East play.  Fill The Steins has all the details right here in our FTS roundup!

Friday (game 1): Maine 17, UMBC 0: Yes, you read that scoreline correctly.  In the first game of Friday’s doubleheader, the Black Bears took the Retrievers DOWNTOWN TO POUND TOWN with 17 runs on 21 hits in a shutout victory over UMBC.  Maine got home runs from Scott Heath, Troy Black, and Luke Morrill at the plate, while pitchers Tommy Lawrence and Shaun Coughlin combined to allow only 7 hits in the shutout.  In addition to his homer, Heath notched 7…yes, SEVEN…RBI and Morrill added another 4 in helping Maine to score in every inning but the 1st and 8th.  We can’t think of a better way to kick off the weekend.

Friday (game 2): Maine 8, UMBC 4: The offensive onslaught was bound to slow down in the nightcap, but Maine still managed to plate 8 runs on their way to sweeping Friday’s doubleheader at Mahaney Diamond.  Heath was the standout at the plate once again for the Black Bears, going 3-3 with 3 RBI.  He also did solid work on the mound, allowing just 2 ER in 4 IP to pick up his 3rd win of the season.  The victory assured Maine a second consecutivve series win against a conference opponent, as the Bears continue to build that all-important momentum heading into Thursday’s conference tournament.

Sunday UMBC 2, Maine 1 (F, 12): A yeoman’s effort  on the mound by junior Steve Trask wasn’t enough in Sunday’s series finale, as the Black Bears fell 2-1 in a 12 inning thriller at Mahaney Diamond.  Trask pitched an astonishing 11.2 innings, while giving up only 2 runs on 7 hits.  Maine’s bats, however, could not provide Trask with enough support to close the season out with a win.  Fittingly, though, it was senior Colin Gay who went 3-5 at the plate and drove in Maine’s only run on Senior Day to lead the offense for the Black Bears.

With the 2014 regular season in the history books, Fill The Steins will be back on Wednesday with our official preview of the America East baseball tournament and our thoughts on Maine’s chances in Lowell.  In the meantime, tell us what you think about Maine baseball in the comments section below and join the conversation on Twitter using #FillTheSteins!!!

Photo courtesy: http://www.goblackbears.com/

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