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April 13, 2014

Southern Maine Sinks UMaine Presque Isle 16-0, 11-1

GORHAM, Maine – Freshman Desiree Benner (Friendship, Maine/Medomak Valley) toosed a five-inning no-hitter in the first game of a non-conference softball doubleheader as the University of Southern Maine Huskies swept the UMaine Presque Isle Owls 16-0 and 11-1 Sunday afternoon at Towers Field.

With the sweep of the Owls, Southern Maine improves its record 12-13.  UMaine Presque Isle loses its fourth straight game and falls to 4-16. 

Benner earned her first shut out victory of the season to improve to 3-7 overall.  Benner set a new career-high for strikeouts. Benner was dominant in the performance and did not allow a runner to advance past second base.  She concluded the game retiring the final six batters she faced in order including four by strikeout.

Offensively, the Southern Maine bats were hot as the Huskies pounded out 12 hits in the win.  Freshman Samantha Crosman (South Berwick, Maine/Marshwood) was 3-for-3 at the plate with four RBI and two runs scored.  Crosman collected her 10th double of the season in the opener and her first triple.  Junior Kristen Duross (Saco, Maine/Thorton Academy) drove in three runs on a 1-for-2 effort at the plate.  Junior Lily Cooper (Lamoine, Maine/Ellsworth) and senior Cara Radino (Franklin, N.J./Wallkill) each had two hits.  Radino drove in a run and had three runs scored.

UMPI starter senior Krista Coffin (Presque Isle, Maine) took the loss.  She allowed four earned runs on 12 hits and two walks.  Coffin was hampered by six UMPI fielding errors.

In the second game, UMPI struck first and took a 1-0 lead in the top of the first as Coffin drove in the Owls' lone run of the game with an RBI sacrifice bunt.  Sophomore Amanda Allen (Limestone, Maine) drew a walk to lead off the inning and then moved to third on a one-out single up the middle from sophomore Shannon Brown (Calais, Maine), before Coffin drove in the run.

The Huskies answered back, however, with five runs in the home half of the inning. Duross connected on a three-run triple to center field to plate Cooper, Radino and Crosman.  Cooper led off with a walk, Radino hit for a single and Crosman drew a walk to load the bases for Duross who is now hitting .321 for the Huskies with a team-leading 19 RBI. Husky senior Stefanie Stockwell (Buxton, Maine/Bonny Eagle) hit her sixth double of the season to score Duross, before coming around to score on an RBI single from freshman Allison Pillar (Hollis, Maine/Bonny Eagle) for a 5-1 USM lead.

Southern Maine added two runs in the bottom of the third on an RBI double from Pillar and an RBI single from junior Rachel Edson (Gray, Maine/Gray-New Gloucester) to lead 7-1 and then took the five-inning victory with four runs in the bottom of the fourth.  In the fourth, freshman Katelyn Hammond (Hampden, Maine/John Bapst Memorial) and Edson each had RBI singles, while Cooper blasted in two runs with a triple to deep right-center field.

Hammond earned the win in the circle for the Huskies, recording her first collegiate victory.  Hammond allowed one earned run on three hits and a walk.  She struck out four.  UMPI freshman Katlyn Dow (Milbridge, Maine) took the loss allowing 10 earned runs on 12 hits and four walks.

Southern Maine hosts Plymouth State on Monday (3:00 p.m.) in a Little East Conference doubleheader. The game was originally schedule for a 3:30 start on Tuesday but was moved up due to forecasted weather.  UMaine Presque Isle travels to Maine Maritime on Friday (3:00 p.m.).