GORHAM, Maine—Three #2 UMass Boston baseball pitchers combined for a six-pitch shutout, as the Beacons knocked off top-seeded University of Southern Maine 2-0 to earn their third-straight trip to the Little East Conference Championship Game.
#2 UMass Boston 2, #1 University of Southern Maine 0
(UMass Boston 29-11)
(Southern Maine 34-7)
HOW IT HAPPENED
Freshman starter Dylan Fashempour (Redland, Calif.) and senior relievers Joe Maguire (Peabody, Mass.) and Bobby Tramondozzi (Peabody, Mass.) combined to hand the Huskies their second shutout loss of the season.
Fashempour went 6.2 innings and scattered four hits and two walks, while striking out eight. Maguire came on to get a strikeout to close out the seventh and Tramondozzi scattered two hits and three strikeouts over the final two frames.
The Beacons only managed four hits of their own, but junior Ryan McCormick (Cumberland, R.I.) made sure they counted. The first baseman went 2-3 with a pair of RBI singles. Anthony Cecere (Wakefield, Mass.) came off the bench to walk twice and score a run and Danny Brown (Hudson, N.H.) tacked on a single and a run scored.
Southern Maine senior starter Dalton Rice was chased after going just 3.1 innings. The senior righty allowed two hits, two walks and two earned runs. Lefty reliever Henry Curran came on out of the pen and held the Beacons scoreless over the final 4.2 frames.
UMass Boston opened the scoring in the second. Brown singled to right and stole second and third base, before racing home on McCormick's single through the middle.
The Huskies put a runner in scoring position in the second, third and fourth innings, but Fashempour came up with a huge strikeout in all three innings to end the rally.
McCormick doubled the Beacons lead in the fourth. Cecere led off the inning with a walk, and stole second with one out. After Rice walked Brown, the Huskies turned to Curran-who was immediately met by a McCormick RBI single to center field. Curran got out of the jam by inducing a 5-3 inning-ending, double play.
Southern Maine tried to answer back in the fifth, but Fashempour stranded two more with a two-out fly out to second.
With their tournament lives on the line, Southern Maine put together a mini-rally in each of the final three innings.
In the seventh, the Huskies put two on with two outs to chase Fashempour, but Maguire blew a fastball past Zach Quintal to end the jam.
After Maguire walked the leadoff hitter in the eight, the Beacons turned to Tramondozzi. He retired the next two batters, but allowed a two-out single to bring the go-ahead run to the plate. Southern Maine senior Jake Dexter hit a long fly ball to the warning track in left, but freshman Danny Collazo (Stamford, Conn.) tracked it down just shy of the wall.
The Huskies put two runners on in the ninth with two outs again, only to have Tramondozzi strike out Andrew Olszak to end the game.
BY THE NUMBERS
- The Beacons are aiming to become the first program in LEC Tournament history to win three-straight LEC Tournaments.
- Tramondozzi set the single-season program record for saves with 10 on Saturday. He set the record last season, when he posted a then program-high nine saves.
- UMass Boston pitching has allowed just four earned runs in 29 innings during the LEC Tournament (1.24 team ERA).
- Nick Herzog (Riverhead, N.Y.) tied Sal Frosceno's record for career games played (178) in Saturday's game.
- The Beacons have won 10 consecutive LEC Tournament games to bring their overall record in the LEC Tournament to 24-25 all-time.
- UMass Boston finished a perfect 5-5 on the basepaths.
#2 UMass Boston will take on #5 UMass Dartmouth in the LEC Championship Seires. The two teams will play game one at 11 a.m., with the If Necessary game following immediately afterwards. UMass Boston needs just one win on Sunday, to claim their third-straight LEC Tournament Title and the automatic bid to the 2019 NCAA Division III Tournament. The Corsairs would have to beat the Beacons twice to win the tournament.