Posted: March 27, 2010
ORONO, Maine – Battling freezing temperatures the Lehigh baseball team was able to earn a split with the Maine Black Bears Saturday afternoon at Mahaney Diamond. The Mountain Hawks took the first game 4-2 behind seven strong innings from senior co-captain Andrew Berger. In the second game, the Brown and White fell behind early and couldn’t recover as the Black Bears held on for a 5-1 win. Lehigh finishes up the day with a 6-11 record and Maine sits at 8-13.
“Berger was outstanding today,” head coach Sean Leary said. “He gave us a great leadership effort and a performance that we needed. Overall game one was a really fundamental game and we did a lot of little things well. It was a game where every single player contributed in some way and it made it unique because everyone was able to have a major impact.”
Leary continued with his thoughts on the second game. “In the second game we fell behind early and Maine’s pitcher did a good job of keeping us out of it. We had some offensive pressure, but we couldn’t capitalize with runners in scoring position.”
In game one both teams struggled at the plate early as it took until the fourth inning for Lehigh to break the scoreless tie. Junior Billy Goldman opened up the inning with a double to left center and he was able to advance to third on a sac fly from his classmate Andrew Russell. A wild pitch by Steve Perakslis allowed Goldman to score to give Lehigh a 1-0 lead.
Junior Brendan McGaheran pushed the Brown and White’s lead to two as he singled in his classmate Logan Winchester in the fifth.
After the Mountain Hawks added another run in the top of the sixth, Maine was able to finally get on the board. Tony Patane led off the inning with a single and advanced to second off a failed pick-off attempt by Berger. Michael Fransoso then doubled in Patane and Joey Martin was able to single him in later in the inning.
Lehigh added another insurance run in the top of the seventh and Berger was able to fight through the final inning to pick up his first win of the season. The righty struck out nine batters, scattered five hits and walked none to earn the victory.
The Mountain Hawks finished game one with eight hits and Goldman led the way as he went 3-for-4 at the plate.
In game two, Maine was able to get its bats going first as it jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the second inning. Lehigh responded in the top of the third as junior Kevin Mihalik singled in his classmate Chad Warga to bring the score to 2-1.
The Black Bears answered right back in the bottom of the inning, scoring two more runs and putting an end to sophomore Cory Kent’s day on the mound. Kent tossed three innings, giving up four runs and allowing five hits.
Senior Ken Longernecker pitched the rest of the way for the Mountain Hawks, but the Brown and White failed to get its offense going. Maine was able to add a final run in the bottom of the fifth and its pitchers shut the door on Lehigh.
A.J. Bazdanes picked up the win for the Black Bears, as he threw 6.1 innings and struck out two batters.
Winchester was the only Mountain Hawk with more than one hit (two) as the team had only seven in the game.
The Mountain Hawks and Black Bears will resume their series Sunday morning at 11:30 a.m. Check back to Lehighsports.com for a full recap from the games.