Softball Welcomes UMBC to Kessock Field on Senior Weekend
ORONO, Maine -- The University of Maine softball team (12-26-1, 3-7-1 America East) returns to America East Conference action on Saturday when they host UMBC (19-25, 1-11 AE) in a doubleheader beginning Saturday at noon. The two teams will meet in the finale on Sunday at 11 am where Maine will honor its five seniors for their hard work and dedication they have given to the softball program. The Black Bears are 1-2-1 in their last four games and most recently defeated St. Joseph's College of Maine 5-0. Ashley Kelley (Hermon, Maine) picked up her sixth win in the circle for Maine in that game while EmJ Fogel (Vienna, Va.) went 1-for-2 with one run scored and a pair of RBI. Maine will look to continue its winning streak over the Retrievers as the Black Bears have won the last four meetings dating back to April 25, 2010. Maine enters this weekend 6-4 in its last 10 games with the Retrievers but are 2-3 in the last five games played at Kessock Field.
Fogel continues to lead the Black Bears' offense as she is hitting .321 with 11 RBI while leading the team in both hits (36) and runs scored (15). Sophomore leftfielder Dagmar Ralphs (O'Fallon, Ill.) ranks second on the team with a .298 average and is second on the team in hits (34), runs scored (12) and RBI (11). Jennifer Eberhardt (Glendale, Ariz.) is batting .245 with nine runs scored and 10 RBI to go along with a pair of home runs. Junior Hilary Kane (Concord, N.H.) leads the Black Bears with 12 RBI to go along with a .221 average and 11 runs scored. Jean Stevens (Albany, Ore.) is chipping in a .259 average and is tied with Kane for the team lead in home runs with three. Freshman Jessica Burk (Warrenton, Va.) recently had seven game hitting streak into today's snapped by is hitting .208 on the year with seven runs scored and six RBI.
Kelley paces the Maine pitching staff as she is 6-11 with a 2.99 ERA. Kelley has fanned 65 in 131.0 innings pitched as she has 13 complete games and one shutout. Junior Beth Spoehr (Appleton, Wis.) has lowered her ERA from 6.94 to 4.85 in her last five games, including a miniscule 0.48 ERA in her last four starts as she has allowed just one run in her last 14.2 innings pitched. Spoehr is 4-7 on the year with 34 strikeouts in 62.0 innings. Kylie Sparks (Kirkland, Wash.) rounds out the pitching staff as she is 2-8 with a 6.70 ERA and has fanned 23 in 54.1 innings pitched.
UMBC enters the weekend winners of its last two after completing a midweek doubleheader sweep of LaSalle on Tuesday. The sweep broke up a 10 game losing streak that included three game sweeps by Binghamton, Stony Brook and Hartford. Sophomore Jessica Warner leads the UMBC offense as she is hitting .375 on the year, second best amongst league leaders, and also leads the Retrievers in runs scored (31), RBI (26), home runs (10), hits (51) and walks (22). Freshman Taylor Hall is batting .369 on the season with 24 RBI and 14 runs scored while she leads the team with 13 doubles. Caitlin Chance is hitting .288 with 18 runs scored and 16 RBI while Katie Ferguson is chipping in a .252 average with both 13 runs scored and 13 RBI.
Ferguson is 8-9 in the circle for UMBC with a 2.95 ERA. She has struck out 78 in 95.0 innings to go along with 11 complete games and two shutouts. Heather Brown is 7-10 in the circle with a 4.55 ERA. Brown has fanned 53 in 103 innings pitched.