Black Bear Nation FTS: Friday to Sunday

With all the off-the-field action this week surrounding the search for a new men’s basketball coach, it sometimes seems like the in-season teams aren’t getting the attention they deserve.  However, with regular seasons winding down and postseason competitions drawing nearer, we here at Fill The Steins are committed to spending our weekend focused on the action on the field (unless, of course, Karlton Creech hires a new men’s hoops coach Sunday).

So, without delay, let’s move forward with the only one-page recap of all the weekend’s action in Black Bear Nation…the FTS: Friday to Sunday!

Baseball: Fill The Steins candidly admits that, until Friday, we didn’t even know NYIT existed.  However, their 3-33 record entering this weekend’s four game series against the Black Bears at Mahaney Diamond was certainly a welcome sight on UMaine’s schedule.

The series got off to a splendid start for our heroes.  The Black Bears swept a doubleheader against NYIT on Friday, winning both games by a score of 1-0.  Pitching was clearly the story, with Tommy Lawrence (CG, 5H, 14K, 1BB) picking up the shutout win in game 1 and Shaun Coughlin (CG, 3H, 9K, 2BB) doing likewise in game 2.  At the plate, Alex Calbick drove in game 1’s lone run in the 6th inning, while game 2’s hero was CF Colin Gay, whose 4th inning RBI proved to be the winner for Maine.

Saturday, the Black Bears’ bats woke up in an 11-4 victory that clinched the series victory for Maine.  The offensive assault was led by Calbick, DH Scott Heath, and LF Steven Adam, each of whom has 2 RBI in the win.  Starting pitcher Jeff Gelinas allowed 2 runs on 4 hits while striking out 6 in 6 IP to pick up his third win of the year on the mound.

Sunday, however, things ended on a disappointing note for the Black Bears.  P Charlie Butler’s three-base throwing error in the top of the 9th led to the go-ahead run for NYIT and gave the visitors a 3-2 victory in the series finale. 

The 3-out-of-4 weekend result pushes Maine’s overall record to 17-23, while they remain 5-7 in America East play.  The Black Bears return to the diamond when they host UMPI at Mahaney Diamond on Tuesday 4/29.  First pitch is scheduled for 5pm ET.

Softball: The Lady Black Bears closed out the home portion of their 2014 schedule with a three game weekend series against Binghamton at Kessock Field in Orono.

Maine dropped the first game of Saturday’s doubleheader by a final score of 5-3 after allowing the Bearcats to score 2 runs in the top of the 7th.  Game 2 of the twin-bill was a much better result for our heroes, as senior P Hannah Hill allowed only 1 run on 4 hits while striking out 4 in a complete game 3-1 Black Bear victory.  Maine’s offense was powered by RF Jessica Burk, who had a double and 2 RBI in the win.

The Black Bears then went on to pull out an emotional 3-2, 10-inning victory Sunday on Senior Day to take the series from Binghamton.  Fittingly, Hill was once again the star in the circle.  She pitched the final 8 innings for the Black Bears, allowing only 1 run and striking out 8 to pick up her 2nd victory of the weekend.  Junior CF EmJ Fogel was the star at the plate for Maine in Sunday’s victory.  She went 2-5 and drove in all 3 Black Bear runs, including the game-winning walk-off RBI in the bottom of the 10th.

With the series win, Maine improves to an even 17-17 overall and a more-than-respectable 8-9 in conference play.  They’re back at it on Thursday 5/1, when they travel to Chestnut Hill, MA to take on Boston College.  First pitch there is scheduled for 4pm ET.

Track & Field: While we don’t always give the track & field team much love, we’d be remiss if we didn’t fill the steins to Maine’s junior thrower Wilson Adams, who broke a 50-year old hammer throw record at this past weekend’s historic Penn Relays. 

In addition to Adams amazing feat, the men’s track & field team took home first place in the Wildcat Invitational II this weekend in Durham, NH.  Maine finished the meet with 134 points, well in front of second place Central Connecticut’s tally of 100 points.

The women’s team had a tougher time, as they finished in sixth place in Durham with a 44.5 point total.  Both the men and the women will look for glory this coming weekend in Burlington, VT at the America East Outdoor Track & Field Championships.  That event takes place on Saturday 5/3 and Sunday 5/4 and we wish both teams the best of luck in their race for glory!

Don’t forget to tune in to this week’s very special Fill The Steins Podcast.  We’ll be joined by Bangor Mayor Ben Sprague to talk about Erin’s Run, which happens this Saturday 5/3 at 10am on the Bangor Waterfront.  You can listen to the show LIVE Sunday night at 7pm and catch the replay anytime in our archives!

Photo courtesy: WLBZ

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