May 5, 2009

By Amy Farnum Novin

MAINE EVENT: Top-ranked Southern Maine kept up the momentum as the Huskies won three of four games last week, including a best-of-three first round series sweep of Plymouth State in the Little East Conference Championship.  The Huskies will now host the four-team double-elimination finals beginning May 7 to decide the league’s automatic berth to the NCAA Division III Championship.

Junior first baseman Collin Henry played a key offensive role for the Huskies, batting .412 with seven runs scored, two doubles, two home runs and seven RBI as his team advanced in postseason play.  The native of Penobscot, Maine, also hurled eight innings in the series-clinching win against Plymouth State as he struck out eight batters while allowing just one run on three hits.

Henry, who was named LEC Pitcher of the Week three weeks ago, garnered his first Player of the Week nod for his dual efforts.

PATRIOT POWER:  The University of Texas at Tyler captured its first American Southwest Conference Championship in school history with a pair of hard-fought victories over Mississippi College on May 3.

The Patriots belted four home runs in a 16-2 win in the first contest, and returned for the second win with a ninth-inning rally in an 8-5 late-night affair. 

Senior Chad Daledien, who homered in the first game, blasted a game-winning two-run homer in the top of the ninth inning as the Patriots rallied for seven runs.  The native of Cave Creek, Ariz., was voted Most Valuable Player of the tournament.

No. 11 UT Tyler advances to the NCAA Division III Baseball Championship on May 13-17 with the victory. The Patriots will learn their NCAA regional match-up and schedule on May 11.

GOLDEN GUY: Western New England upended top-seed and No. 14 Curry, 10-2, in The Commonwealth Coast Conference tournament finale on May 2 as the Golden Bears claimed their second straight league championship.

Senior Bryan Calzone notched a pair of victories in three tournament appearances last week, beginning with a 15-3 win over Nichols to open play.  The native of Bethel, Conn., kept the Golden Bears alive with a solid two-inning relief appearance in an 8-4 win over Roger Williams, and capped it off by holding Curry to two runs on five hits in 5.1 innings for the championship.  Calzone was selected TCCC Pitcher of the Week for his outstanding play.

RED HOT:  Cortland stretched its streak of SUNY Athletic Conference titles to five straight with an 8-5 victory over Brockport, earning its 17th consecutive appearance in the NCAA Tournament – the longest streak in Division III.

A.J. Carney picked up his first collegiate victory as he held Brockport to one run on three hits in 4.1 innings pitched.  The native of Penfield, N.Y., who did not play the last two years due to injury, struck out three batters in the outing, and was named to the SUNYAC All-Tournament team.

ENGINEERING VICTORY: Worchester Polytechnic Institute earned its first New England Women’s and Men’s Athletic Conference regular season title in program history after posting the most wins (26) in the 106-year history of the program.

WPI will be the top seed in the ECAC Division III New England Baseball Tournament and will serve as host for the semifinals and championship game on May 9.  The Engineers finished the season by winning 11 of their last 13 games.