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Heath Belts First Career Home Run, But Baseball Falls at Albany 9-5 and 12-2
ALBANY, N.Y. – The University of Maine baseball team dropped a pair of games to Albany on Saturday afternoon in Albany, N.Y. The Black Bears fell in the first game 9-5, before dropping the second game 12-2. Maine falls to 22-21 on the season and 8-6 in America East play. Albany improves to 16-27-1 and 10-6 in conference play.
In the first game, Maine jumped out to a 1-0 lead in the top of the first inning. Michael Fransoso (Portsmouth, N.H.) doubled down the right field line. He stole third base and scored when Tyler Patzalek (Burlington, Ontario) recorded an infield single.
Albany answered with a pair of runs in the bottom of the first inning. D.J. Hoagboon doubled to right field before Pete DiResta reached on an error. Both runners advanced a base on a wild pitch. Hoagboon scored on a Mike Tirri sacrifice fly, while DiResta scored the second run of the inning when Josh Nethaway singled to right.
Maine grabbed the lead in the top of the third inning with three runs. Fransoso singled, advanced to second when Colin Gay (Franklin, Mass.) dropped down a sacrifice bunt, stole third and scored on an error. Ian Leisenheimer (Middle Village, N.Y.) singled to left field and Scott Heath (Westbrook, Maine) followed with his first career home run.
The Black Bears extended their lead to 5-2 in the top of the fifth inning. Patzalek reached on a fielder's choice and scored when Justin Leisenheimer (Middle Village, N.Y.) drew a bases loaded walk.
Albany cut into the lead with a pair of runs in the bottom of the fifth inning. The Great Danes scored five runs in the bottom of the sixth to earn the 9-5 victory. DiResta had a key three-run home run in the inning.
Stephen Perakslis (Abington, Mass.) went 4.2 innings on the mound for the Black Bears. He allowed four runs, just two of which were earned, on 10 hits. Mike Connolly (Middleborough, Mass.) replaced Perakslis. He allowed five runs on four hits in 1.1 innings to suffer the loss. He falls to 3-5 on the season.
Zach Kraham went five innings and allowed five runs on eight hits for Albany, but did not record a decision. Ryan White replaced Kraham and went two scoreless innings. He picks up the win and improves to 3-2 on the season.
In the second game, Albany jumped out to a 4-0 lead in the bottom of the first inning. Nolan Gaige and Hoagboon recorded back-to-back singles. DiResta followed with a triple to left center field, plating both runners. Tirri reached base after he was hit. DiResta scored when Brian Bullard grounded out. Tirri scored the fourth run of the inning when Jeff Welsh tripled.
The Great Danes tacked on a pair of runs in the bottom of the fifth inning. Nethaway and Bullard both walked and scored when Gordon Madej singled to left field.
Maine got on the board in the top of the sixth inning. Fransoso tripled to center field and scored when Gay reached on an infield single.
The Black Bears got a second run in the top of the seventh inning. Heath singled and advanced to second on a Patzalek single. He scored when Justin Leisenheimer singled to right field.
Albany answered right back with a two-run home run by Jeff Welsh in the bottom of the inning to made it 8-2.
Tirri and Welsh each had a two-run doubles in the bottom of the eighth inning as Albany extended its lead to 12-2.
Shaun Coughlin (Northford, Conn.) went four innings on the mound for the Black Bears. He allowed six runs on seven hits and falls to 3-4 on the season. Jonathan Balentina (Willemstad, Curacao) replaced Coughlin. He went three innings and allowed two runs on a pair of hits. He struck out four. Eric White (Brewer, Maine) pitched the final inning and allowed four runs, just two of which were earned, on three hits.
Sean Lucas went seven innings for Albany and picked up the win. He improves to 4-5 on the season. He allowed two runs on six hits. Greg Lutton pitched the final pair of innings and allowed just one hit.
Maine and Albany finish their three-game weekend series on Sunday, May 6. First pitch is scheduled for 1 PM.