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Baseball Wraps Up 2013 Regular Season with Three-Game Series at Maine
Senior Jason Allinder
BALTIMORE – The UMBC baseball team concludes its 2013 season with a trip up I-95 to take on America East Regular Season Champion Maine with a three-game series, beginning on Friday at Mahaney Diamond. The Retrievers and Black Bears will play a doubleheader on Friday with game one set for a 4:00 p.m. start, and then complete the series with a single game on Saturday.
In game one, junior right-hander Stephen Chrzanowski (Frederick, Md./Tuscarora/Hagerstown CC) will oppose Black Bear righty A.J. Bazdanes (5-5, 3.49 ERA). Chrzanowski (0-1, 4.34 ERA), who has come out of the bullpen 16 times this spring, will be making his second start of the season after getting the ball to start at Georgetown on Mar. 13.
Maine will send right-hander Shaun Coughlin to the hill in game two of the doubleheader while UMBC has not determined a starter. Coughlin (1-1, 3.31 ERA) started the series finale between the clubs in Baltimore, pitching just four innings and giving up four runs on six hits.
America East Pitcher of the Week Mac Gill (Bethesda, Md./Walter Johnson) will start the season finale for the Retrievers and will go against Logan Fullmer (2-3, 5.79 ERA). Gill has thrown four consecutive complete games for UMBC and defeated Hartford last week, allowing just one unearned run on seven hits and striking out three.
Maine (32-19, 18-8 AE) swept the three-game series earlier this season in Baltimore. The Black Bears blanked UMBC (17-28, 8-19 AE) in the opener, but then had to use extra innings to win game two, 8-7, on a solo home run by Eric White in the top of the tenth. In Sunday’s finale, the Retrievers took a 5-0 lead in the fifth inning as senior Jason Allinder (Snow Hill, Md./Snow Hill/Chesapeake CC) drove in sophomore Jake Barnes (Annandale, Va./Annandale), but the Black Bears rallied for ten runs in the final four frames to complete the sweep.
UMBC enters the final weekend of the year winners of six of its last eight games, earning a come-from-behind 6-5 victory over Georgetown on Tuesday. Limited to just two hits through the first six innings, the Retrievers used a four-run seventh inning to earn a win in their final home game of the year. Senior Rob McCabe (Philadelphia, Pa./St. Joseph’s Prep) went 2-for-2, scoring two runs, and reached base in all five of his plate appearances.
Freshman Kevin Lachance (Clifton, Va./Centreville), who tied the game with a two-RBI single in the seventh, leads UMBC at the plate with a .301 average (50-for-166) at the plate. The rookie shortstop, who is also tied for the team lead with 16 RBI and heads the Retrievers with 13 stolen bases, was named the America East Rookie of the Week after last weekend’s series with Hartford.
Out of the pen, freshman Cam Maxey (Mechanicsville, Va./Atlee) and sophomore Kevin Ladner (Succasunna, N.J./Roxbury) combined to hold Georgetown to one run over the course of five innings, with Ladner earning his first career save. The second-year righty has posted a 4-1 record and holds a team-best 2.59 ERA this season in 41.2 innings of work. Junior Jon Cohn (Scottsdale, Ariz./Notre Dame Prep) has been the work horse for the Retriever staff, throwing 50.1 innings this season for a 3.04 ERA.
Having already clinched the conference regular-season crown last weekend, Maine defeated Boston College 9-7 in Chestnut Hill, Mass. on Wednesday afternoon behind freshman’s Shane Bussey’s three-hits, one of which was his first career home run. Junior Alex Calbick also collect three hits and drove in two runs. The Black Bears lead the America East both in hitting (.303 batting average) and pitching (3.62 ERA) and sit second in fielding (.970 %)
Senior Michael Fransoso was lifted in the first inning after getting hit by a pitch at BC, but paces the Blacks Bears at the plate with a .358 average (67-for-187) and 41 runs scored. Junior Eric White was named the conference Player of the Week last Monday after hitting .538 with seven hits, including his team-best fifth home run.
Three Black Bear pitchers have earned two saves this year with Burk FitzPatrick picking up his second on Wednesday, despite surrendering three runs in 1.2 innings on the mound.
- Maine leads the all-time series 34-3 and holds a 33-3 advantage in conference games. The Black Bears won the only non-conference meeting, a 9-5 decision on Mar. 11, 2002 in Charm City.
- Maine has won 19 straight games between the clubs with UMBC last defeating its conference rival with a 4-2 win on Apr. 20, 2008. The teams split a four-game series that year with the Retrievers also picking up a 21-8 win in seven innings.
- This weekend’s series marks the first time since 2008 that UMBC will close the regular season on the road. In 2009, the Retrievers finished conference play at Vermont (May 11), but then concluded the year at home the next day against Georgetown (May 12).
- This will be UMBC’s first time playing at Mahaney Diamond under second-year head coach Bob Mumma. UMBC and Maine played four times at Alumni Field in Baltimore in 2012 and followed with the three-game series earlier this season.
- Maine is the only America East opponent that the Retrievers have not defeated under Mumma.
- Friday’s doubleheader marks just the second time that the Retrievers will be playing on a Friday. UMBC opened the season at the Caravelle Resort’s Baseball at the Beach in Myrtle Beach, S.C. dropping a 5-3 decision to nationally-ranked N.C. State on Friday, Mar. 1.
- UMBC and Maine have met on the final weekend of the regular season two other times (2004 and 2010) since the Retrievers joined the America East in 2004.
- The Retrievers are 6-13 on the road in 2013 and 1-14 all-time at Maine. UMBC claimed its only win in the Pine Tree State during its first-ever visit, 14-1 on Apr. 17, 2005.
- Barnes went 5-for-10 with two doubles and a homerun in the three-game series against Maine earlier this season.