Castleton, VT – Castleton State College and Husson University split a North Eastern Athletic Conference (NEAC) East Division doubleheader at Spartan Field Friday. The defending conference champion Eagles received seven strong innings from starter Nate Adams (Frankfort, Maine) and Jake Arthers (Belfast, Maine) went 2-for-3 with two RBI to lead the Eagles to a 4-1 win in the opener, while the 2010 champion Spartans used a two-hit shutout from Adam Greenlese (Shokan, N.Y.) to take the nightcap 8-0.
With the split the Spartans saw their 12-game conference win streak snapped, and now stand at 18-10, 12-1 while Husson moved to 13-12, 10-4. The teams will finish off a four-game set tomorrow with a doubleheader scheduled for 11 am.
Adams retired the first seven batters he faced and worked around four hits and three walks the rest of the way to pick up the complete-game win. Adams struck out three and received a pair of clutch double-plays to improve to 4-3 on the season.
Counterpart Dakota Aker (Schenectady, N.Y.) allowed three earned runs on eight hits, while striking out eight in the loss. Aker allowed a pair of runs in the first and one in the third before settling down to retire nine of the next ten batters he faced before being touched for an insurance run in the seventh.
The Eagles struck in the first as Kyle Vanidestine (Bangor, Maine) led off the game with an infield single to third, moved to second on a sacrifice bunt and was brought around by an Arthers double to centerfield. Arthers later scored on a fielding error to push the early advantage to 2-0.
Vanidestine and Arthers hooked up for the third Eagle run in the third, as the former once again singled and moved to second on a sacrifice before being brought home by the latter.
An error and a pair of singles loaded the bases with one out for Castleton in the bottom half of the inning, but Arthers showed off his prowess in the field making a backhanded stab at third base for one out and firing across the diamond to first to get a hustling Cameron Curler (Vergennes, Vt.) for the rally-killing double-play.
Castleton broke through for a run in the fifth on a David Brandt (Contoocook, N.H.) RBI-single, plating Zak Mayo (Avon, Conn.) who singled earlier in the frame.
The Spartans quickly got back to the offense aided by the double-play ball and once again loaded the bases with one out on two walks and an error. Again, it was the double-play ball that got Adams out of the jam, this time started by shortstop Cody McInnis (Bangor, Maine) who flipped to second baseman Brandon Gendreau (Brewer, Maine) for one, who threw to first to extinguish the rally.
Husson had runners on second and third with no outs in the seventh, but was able to produce just one insurance run on a Gendreau single through the drawn in left side of the infield and Castleton went quietly in order to end the game.
Vanidestine finished 2-for-4 with two runs, and McInnis also added a pair of hits at the bottom of the Eagle lineup.
Brandt finished with a pair of hits and the lone RBI to lead the Spartan offense.
In the nightcap Vanidestine led off with a single in the first before Greenlese sent down the next 13 Eagles he faced in order. A McInnis double down the leftfield line in the sixth broke up the string, but the sophomore settled in and sent down the next five batters he faced to finish the shutout. Greenlese kept the Eagles off balance all game, using an assortment of breaking pitches while striking out five to improve to 2-0 on the season.
Pat McEwen (Brewer, Maine) started for the Eagles and allowed seven runs (three earned) on seven hits and three walks while striking out four to fall to 4-3.
McEwen scattered three hits over the first three innings before Castleton broke through for three runs in the fourth on a two-run double down the leftfield line by Wagner and a double to the gap in left-centerfield by Macyn Clifford (Brookline, N.H.).
Castleton plated five-straight unearned runs in the fifth and sixth innings, scoring a pair in the fifth on an RBI ground out by Mayo and a run-scoring double from Wagner and three more in the sixth as Ryan Zielinski (Schenectady, N.Y.) tripled home a run and Mayo added an RBI single after a leadoff error set Castleton up for both innings.
Wagner went 2-for-4 with three RBI and a run scored to lead the offense, while Curler, Zielinski and Joe Borowski (Schenectady, N.Y.) each scored twice.