Huskies Face Top-Seeded UMass Boston
BOSTON -- Sophomore Nate Vigeant (Coventry, R.I./St. Raphael) drove in three runs as the fourth-seeded Rhode Island College Anchormen defeated the third-seeded University of Southern Maine Huskies, 7-3, Thursday morning in the third game of the 2018 Little East Conference Baseball Championship Tournament being played at the University of Massachusetts Boston.
The game was completed Thursday morning after being halted in the top of the sixth inning Wednesday evening due to fog that made for unplayable conditions.
The loss drops the Huskies, now 27-12 on the season, into a must-win match-up later today (scheduled for 4:30 p.m.) with top-seeded UMass Boston. The Anchormen, 20-13 overall, move along to play second-seeded Eastern Connecticut State University tonight in a match-up of two unbeaten teams in the six-team, double-elimination tournament.
Vigeant was a key player in the Anchormen's three-run second-inning uprising against USM sophomore starter Ben Lambert (Saco, Maine/Thornton Academy). With two aboard, Vigeant slashed a double down the left-field line to score both runners giving RIC a 2-0 lead. Vigeant scored the final run on an infield throwing error.
The Huskies got one run back in its half of the frame on sophomore Andrew Hillier's (Bangor, Maine) solo home run to left-center field. The round tripper was the third of the season for Hillier.
RIC expanded its lead to 5-1 with single runs in the fourth and sixth innings. Junior Tyler Walsh (Cumberland, R.I./La Salle Academy) drove in both runs with a pair of singles.
Junior Jake Dexter (Oakland, Maine/Messalonskee) pulled the Huskies back within three (5-2) with his RBI double in the seventh.
The Anchormen tacked on a couple of insurance runs in the ninth. Sophomore Mike Webb (Pawtucket, R.I./Bishop Hendricken) doubled in the first run. Vigeant forced home the second marker when he was hit by a pitch with the bases loaded.
Hillier drove in his second run of the game in the bottom half of the ninth with a single.
The Anchormen, led by senior Tyler Rains (North Kingstown, R.I.), pounded out 15 hits against five USM hurlers and benefited from six walks and two hit batsmen. Rains went 3 for 4 and scored two runs.
Senior southpaw Andrew Veiga (Lincoln, R.I.) picked up the win going five innings Wednesday evening before the game was stopped. Veiga allowed one run on two hits without walking a batter. He struck out six while improving his record to 6-4. Junior Stephen Noti (Warwick, R.I./Pilgrim) pitched the final four innings to pick up his second save of the season.
Hillier was the lone Husky to have multiple hits in the game going 2 for 3 with a walk and two RBI. Lambert was saddled with his third loss of the year.