GORHAM – Freshman third baseman Forrest Chadwick has spent much of the season gaining confidence at the plate from the leadoff position for the University of Southern Maine baseball team.

In the first inning Tuesday, he started things off for the Huskies with a home run off the left-field scoreboard before coming around in the order again and ripping a triple that scored two runs.

By game’s end Chadwick, nearly hit for the cycle with a homer, triple, single and a walk as USM edged Bowdoin 15-12 in a hit-heavy afternoon.

The teams scattered 32 hits around USM Baseball Stadium as each prepared for its respective conference tournament.

“We had a big inning in the first and had to battle to stay in the game,” said Chadwick, a former Gardiner standout. “I’ve just been working on being relaxed at the plate.

“I wasn’t confident earlier this season, but now I just hope to keep it up.”

USM batted around the order twice, including a seven-run first inning.

Chadwick slammed the third pitch of his at-bat against Bowdoin left-hander Evan Farley, and USM scored seven runs on six hits for a 7-2 lead in the first.

Bowdoin (20-11) kept chipping away, scoring three runs in the second to make it 7-5 before USM upped its lead to 9-5 in the third.

Bowdoin got two more runs in the fourth and one in the fifth before USM broke out for seven hits in a six-run fifth inning to make it 15-8. The big hits in the inning included a bases-clearing double by Tucker White that scored three and a home run by Nick Grady.

USM used six pitchers and committed three errors, but totaled 20 of the game’s 32 hits.

“The encouraging part of this game is that we hit the ball,” said Flaherty. “Sometimes you get this kind of game midweek. But winning is a state of mind. When you win a game, it makes you feel as though you can win the next one.”

The Huskies (19-15) have a doubleheader against Massachusetts Dartmouth on Friday that they may need to win to qualify for the Little East Conference playoffs that begin May 11. USM sits in fifth place in a crowded race for six qualifying spots.

Bowdoin Coach Mike Connolly said the Polar Bears have earned the No. 2 seed in the New England Small College Athletic Conference tournament.

“We hung in there tonight and couldn’t stop them from scoring soon enough,” said Connolly. “They’re outstanding hitters.

“More than anything, we want to get back to playing really good baseball, just to being consistent and staying on our toes.”

USM got solid relief innings out of Grey Goodrich and Dustin Stanton, neither of whom allowed a hit or walk. Reliever Evan Humphrey earned the win, giving up four hits and three runs in two innings.

Left-hander Evan Farley (2-1) took the loss.

Chadwick went 3 for 4 with a walk and three RBI. USM also got three RBI apiece from White, Grady and David Ricker.

 

NOTES: Infielder Josh Mackey, who just returned to the lineup after missing 10 days with an injury, got caught in a rundown in the second inning and was tagged out diving back into first. Flaherty said Mackey jammed his thumb and was being evaluated.

Staff Writer Jenn Menendez can be contacted at 791-6426 or at:

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