GORHAM, Maine - Falling short on a late rally, the Castleton University baseball team dropped a 5-3 decision against the nationally-ranked University of Southern Maine Huskies on Wednesday afternoon at Ed Flaherty Field during day one of the Little East Conference Championship.
Castleton falls to 17-20 overall, while No. 2/2 Southern Maine improves to 33-5.
Trailing 4-0 with just one hit on the board heading into the fifth, Castleton was able to get to starter Josh Joy. Matt Jackson led off the inning with a base hit up the middle before Josh Ferro got clipped by an inside pitch to make it first and second with none gone. John Stewart III's sacrifice bunt during the next at-bat was thrown away by the pitcher, allowing Jackson to score and the other two runners to move up. Pat Mumford followed up with an RBI groundout to third making it 4-2.
Picking up a run in the seventh, the Spartans cut the deficit down to one - 4-3 - as Ferro led off with a triple down the right-field line. Following, Mumford reached on a throwing error, allowing Ferro to hustle home for the run.
Southern Maine scored twice in the first and one apiece in the second and third on five hits and two errors. Adding an insurance run, the Huskies brought one across in the seventh.
Garrett Moran turned in a gutsy performance, tossing six innings and allowing two earned runs. The junior hurler settled in and retired nine of 11 faced between the fourth and sixth innings, striking out five; he finished with six strikeouts.
Castleton returns to action at 12 p.m. on Thursday as it will play in the first elimination game of the LEC Championship. It will face the loser of the two-five matchup between UMass Boston and UMass-Dartmouth, respectively.
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