BALTIMORE--The UMBC baseball team won its conference-opener for the first time since joining the America East in the 2003-04 season as the Retrievers (8-13) downed Vermont, 10-9, in the first game of a four-game series on Friday afternoon at The Baseball Factory Field at UMBC.
Junior Scott Peddicord (Columbia, Md./Long Reach) recorded his third home run in the last two games as he tallied a grand slam in the bottom of the fourth as the Retrievers took a 5-4 lead over the Catamounts (5-10). Peddicord was 3-for-4 on the day with two runs scored, four RBI, a double, and the home run.
Junior Dan Blewett (2-4) (Bel Air, Md./Bel Air) earned his second win of the season after pitching 6.2 innings and giving up seven runs on nine hits while striking out four. Junior Ryan Morse (Frederick, Md./Catoctin/Chesapeake JC) picked up his second save of the year, pitching one inning in relief and giving up just one run on one hit. Redshirt freshman Austin Drewyer (Ellicott City, Md./River Hill) also pitched 1.1 innings in relief as he gave up one run on four hits while fanning three.
Miguel Magrass led the Catamounts in the loss, going 4-for-5 on the day with two runs scored, three RBI, a double and a home run, while Kyle Henry (1-2) was slated with his second loss of the season after giving up nine runs, three earned on 13 hits in five innings of work.
The Catamounts broke a scoreless tie in the top of the fourth with a two-run, bases-clearing double from Magrass, an RBI double by Jeff Nolet and a Retriever error to take a 4-0 lead.
The Retrievers rallied in the bottom of the inning, however, as they took a 5-4 lead which was started off by a one-out single by senior Mark Lemon (Wilmington, Del./St. Markâ€™s). Senior Steve Russo (Lancaster, Pa./Conestoga Valley) followed with a single of his own before freshman Rich Conlon (Vienna, Va./James Madison) struck out looking to give the Retrievers two outs.
Junior Wink Nolan (Ellicott City, Md./Calvert Hall/Maryland) struck out for what should have been the third out, but reached base on a passed ball to bring junior Joe Fowler (Wilmington, Del./St. Markâ€™s) to the plate, who brought in a run after taking a ball to the arm and put Peddicord in the batterâ€™s box with two outs.
A grand slam by Peddicord to deep center gave the Retrievers a 5-4 advantage going into the fifth, though the Catamounts quickly countered with a solo homer by Justin Milo to knot the score at five.
Fowler added three more runs for UMBC in the sixth with a homer down the left field line and junior Tom Meaney (Holbrook, N.Y./Sachem) added one more with an RBI single up the middle to put the Retrievers up, 9-5.
Vermont cut that lead to three in the top of the seventh, but the Retrievers added one more in the bottom of the inning after Meaney walked with bases loaded.
The Catamounts threatened, scoring one run in the eighth to cut the lead to three once again and saw another solo homer, this time by Magrass, in the ninth before the Retrievers shut them down for the 10-9 win.
The Retrievers and Catamounts continue the four-game series on Saturday with a doubleheader scheduled to begin at 1:00 p.m. and will play the finale on Sunday at 12:00 p.m.
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March 12, 2008 UMBC Baseball Wins Second Straight, Down Georgetown, 10-9
March 11, 2008 UMBC Baseball's Fowler Named Conference Player of the Week
March 6, 2008 Saturday Baseball Game vs. Manhattan Postponed
March 5, 2008 UMBC Baseball Bats Come Alive in 18-6 Decision over Navy
March 2, 2008 UMBC Baseball Falls in Series Finale, 23-0, to Army
February 29, 2008 UMBC Baseball Drops Season-Opener, 4-3, to Army
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