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Game Preview: Baseball vs. Southern Maine

Game Preview: Baseball vs. Southern Maine

Baseball vs. Southern Maine
Thursday, April 20—3:30 p.m.
Govoni Field—Babson Park, Mass.

Babson and Southern Maine will meet for the 17th time on Thursday in a series that dates back to 2000. The Beavers are 6-9-1 all-time against the Huskies but have won three of the last four games between the squads.

Junior Mark Webber hit a grand slam and drove in five runs as Babson knocked off then-16th-ranked Southern Maine, 12-8, on April 21, 2016, in Gorham, Maine. Senior Jack Halpin doubled twice and drove in a pair of runs for the Beavers, who helped head coach Matt Noone record his 300th career victory. Junior Tom Budrewicz went 3-for-4 with two doubles and three RBI for the Huskies.

Sam Dexter went 3-for-5 with two doubles, two stolen bases and two runs scored as Southern Maine defeated the Beavers, 7-5, on April 16, 2015, in Babson Park. Damon Wallace, senior Paul McDonough and Anthony Capuano all homered for the Huskies, while Dillon Gonzalez '15 had a double and a triple to go along with two runs scored for the Beavers.

Southern Maine (19-7) matched the nation's longest winning streak to 12 games with a 7-3 victory over Endicott on Wednesday. First-year Dylan Hapworth went 2-for-3 with two RBI and five different relievers tossed 4.2 shutout innings for the Huskies, who went ahead for good with a two-run fifth inning. Hapworth is batting .429 with nine doubles, three triples, seven homers and 31 RBI, senior Matt Bender checks in at .387 with eight doubles and 23 runs scored, and sophomore Jake Dexter is hitting .373 with four extra-base hits and 20 runs batted in. Classmate Matt Correale is 3-1 with two saves and a 2.70 ERA in 18 relief appearances, while fellow sophomore Dalton Rice is 3-1 with a 2.94 ERA and 32 strikeouts in 33.2 innings.

Babson (13-12) opened a stretch of seven games in five days with a 5-0 win over Clark on Wednesday. Sophomore Brian McHale and junior Ryan Arena both homered, and sophomore Connor Gill tossed a complete-game shutout for the Beavers, who turned three double plays in the win. McHale is batting .390 with seven extra-base hits and 13 RBI, senior Jake Weiss is hitting .339 with two doubles, a triple and 14 runs scored, and Arena enters the day with a .338 average to go along seven doubles, seven homers and 14 runs batted in. Senior Ken Rotunno is 1-1 with a 1.56 in nine appearances out of the bullpen, while sophomore Michael Genaro has gone 3-1 with a 2.45 ERA and a 7.67 strikeout-to-walk ratio in 36.2 innings of work.

McHale, who has at least one hit in five straight outings and is second on the team with nine multi-hit games, has gone down on strikes just twice in 82 at-bats this season, making him the ninth toughest player to strike out in Division III.

First-year Sean Harrington, who leads the Green and White with 15 walks and a .541 on-base percentage, has reached base safely in all 16 games he's played this season. Additionally, Arena has been on base in 15 straight contests to raise his OPB to .404.

The Beavers' lineup is hitting .430 when leading off an inning this spring.