TALLAHASSEE, Fla. -- The University of Maine baseball team swept its two-game series with Florida A&M, defeating the Rattlers 17-7 on Wednesday afternoon in Tallahassee, Fla. The Black Bears improve to 3-2 on the season with the victory. Alex Calbick (Burnaby, British Columbia) knocked in four runs in the game for the Black Bears, while Brian Doran (Ayr, Ontario) had three RBI. Maine scored in eight of the nine innings.
Maine jumped out to a 1-0 lead in the top of the first inning. Colin Gay (Franklin, Mass.) walked and Michael Fransoso (Portsmouth, N.H.) followed with a single through the left side. Ian Leisenheimer (Middle Village, N.Y.) singled to load the bases. Alex Calbick reached on a fielder's choice and Gay scored. Fransoso scored on an error on the play.
Florida A&M got on the board in the bottom of the second inning. Cory Franklin singled to shortstop and scored on a wild pitch.
The Black Bears added to their lead in the third inning. Calbick reached on a fielder's choice. Fran Whitten (Westborough, Mass.) singled to center field and Calbick advanced to second. White struck out, but reached on a wild pitch. Whitten advanced to third and Calbick scored on the play. White and Whitten then pulled off a double steal with White stealing second base and Whitten home.
The Black Bears added four more runs in the top of the fourth inning. Balzano led off the inning with a single and then stole second base. Gay followed with a single to shortstop. Both runners advanced a base when Scott Heath (Westbrook, Maine) had a sacrifice bunt. Fransoso was hit to load the bases. Calbick followed with a two-run single, plating both Balzano and Gay. Fransoso scored the eighth run of the game on a wild pitch. Whitten followed and drew a walk. White singled driving home Calbick.
The Rattlers got four runs in the bottom of the fourth inning. Jarryd Reid walked and and scored on a wild pitch. Aaron Smith was hit and Jaylin Earl reached on a fielder's choice. Both runners scored when Daniel Lee singled. Lee scored when Jared Walker tripled to left field.
Maine got a run back in the top of the fifth. Balzano walked and scored when Fransoso reached on a fielder's choice.
In the top of the seventh inning, Balzano reached on an error and scored when Heath doubled. The Black Bears continued to add to their lead in the top of the eighth inning. Justin Leisenheimer (Middle Village, N.Y.) singled and scored when Whitten singled. Whitten scored the second run of the inning when Brian Doran drew a bases loaded walk.
Florida A&M scored a pair of runs in the bottom of the eighth inning.
The Black Bears got four runs in the top of the ninth inning to make it a 17-7 final. Whitten and White had back-to-back singles. Connolly and Balzano drew back-to-back walks, with the walk to Balzano forcing home Whitten. Gay followed with a single plating White. Connolly and Balzano both scored when Doran singled.
Manny Pupo (Boynton Beach, Fla.) made his collegiate debut for the Black Bearson the mound. He went four innings and allowed five runs on seven hits while striking out a pair. He was replaced by Jonathan Balentina (Willemstad, Curacao) who retired both batters that he faced. Luke Morrill (South Thomaston, Maine) went 2.1 innings and allowed three hits while striking out a pair. Steve Trask (Saco, Maine) pitched the final two innings for the Black Bears. He allowed two runs on five hits.
Maine returns to action on Friday, March 2 when it travels to Florida State. First pitch is slated for 4 PM.