Southern Maine Sweeps RIC in Little East Opener

More news about: Rhode Island College

Providence, R.I.-Senior Matt Verrier (Norway, ME) and sophomore shortstop Sam Dexter (Oakland, ME) combined to rattle off 10 hits on Saturday to lead the University of Southern Maine baseball team to a sweep of Rhode Island College in a Little East Conference doubleheader at Anchorman Field.

No. 5 Southern Maine (12-4, 2-0 LEC) knocked off Rhode Island College (5-10, 0-2 LEC) in the opening contest, 4-0, before cruising past the Anchormen in the nightcap, 13-0 (seven innings).

Sophomore left-hander Tyler Leavitt (North Andover, MA) hurled a complete-game shutout to carry USM to the four-run victory in the Little East Conference opener. Leavitt (3-1) conceded just five hits and two walks, while striking out five.

Following a scoreless first inning, the Huskies got on the scoreboard in the top of the second thanks to a solo-home run from Verrier that sailed over the left field fence. USM tacked on another run to make it, 2-0, in the third inning after senior left fielder Chris Bernard (Scarborough, ME) singled up the middle to score Dexter, who reached on an infield single earlier in the frame.

After two more scoreless stanzas, Bernard led off the top of the sixth with a single, advanced to second on a wild pitch, stole third base, and eventually scored on an error to put the visitors up by three. The Huskies rounded out the scoring later in the inning after senior first baseman John Carey (South Portland, ME) scored on a balk and made it, 4-0.

Senior left-hander C.J. Tsoumakas (Hope, RI) started game one for the Anchormen and suffered the loss despite six solid innings of work. Tsoumakas (2-2) fanned five batters and scattered four runs (three earned) on seven hits and two walks.

Junior right-hander Dylan Cummiskey (Warwick, RI) pitched three scoreless innings in relief of Tsoumakas and allowed just three hits, while striking out one.

In game two, the Huskies put runners in scoring position early in the top of the first and eventually jumped out to a 2-0 lead over the Anchormen after Carey and Verrier each drew bases-loaded walks to score Dexter and senior center fielder Forrest Chadwick (Gardiner, ME).

Following a pair of quiet innings, USM opened the floodgates with five runs in the top of the fourth inning to extend its lead to seven. Senior third baseman Troy Thibodeau (Danvers, MA) spearheaded the onslaught with an RBI double early in the frame, while Dexter and Carey each ripped RBI singles later in the inning to highlight the scoring for the visitors.

Southern Maine rounded out the scoring with two runs in the sixth inning, keyed by RBI singles from Chadwick and sophomore left fielder Nick DiBiase (Portland, ME), and four more runs in the seventh inning to run away with the, 13-0, victory.

Freshman right-hander Zack Bean (Westbrook, ME) picked up the win for USM in game two. Bean (2-0) got the start for the visitors and fanned three batters in five scoreless innings, while allowing just three hits and one walk along the way.

Sophomore right-hander Ryan Browner (Georgetown, MA) and junior right-handerDylan Morris (Bangor, ME) each tossed a scoreless inning of relief for the Huskies.

Junior right-hander Kyle Morvan (Smithfield, RI) was tagged with the loss (3-1) for Rhode Island College.

Led by Verrier and Dexter, Southern Maine compiled 25 hits in the two contests en route to the two LEC victories.  Verrier went 5-for-7 with a double, a home run, two RBI, a walk, and two run scored, while Dexter went 5-for-8 with a double, an RBI, a walk, and four runs scored. Bernard also had a solid day at the plate, going 4-for-8 for USM with an RBI, a walk, two stolen bases and two runs scored.

Junior second baseman Dean Beshansky (Cumberland, RI) went 3-for-7 on the day to pace the Anchormen offensively, while sophomore right fielder Matt Foley (Seekonk, MA) added a pair of hits. Sophomore first baseman Angelo St. Laurent (Cranston, RI)went 1-for-1 and drew a pair of walks for RIC in the second tilt.

In upcoming action, Rhode Island College travels to Worcester State on Tuesday, April 1 (3:30 p.m.) in non-conference action.