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Bobcats of the week of Apr. 11, 2011

Kevin McGregor '13
Maybe it wasn't quite a "must-win" game, but the Bates baseball team really needed to come away with at least one win on Saturday, when the Bobcats faced Bowdoin for a doubleheader at Leahey Field. The day before, Bowdoin had handed Bates its fourth straight loss, all NESCAC East Division games, two of which were nail-biter, one-run games the Bobcats felt they had given away at Tufts.It seemed like a lot of pressure to put on the back of sophomore first baseman and part-time pitcher Kevin McGregor (Randolph, N.J.), handing the ball to a pitcher with a career record of 0-0 over 10 appearances for the Bobcats. But the 6-foot-3 lefthander responded just the way head coach Mike Leonard hoped he would, spinning a seven-inning gem as Bates won the game 4-1 in extra innings. Leonard scattered just five hits and one walk, allowing Bowdoin a single run through seven innings while striking out two Polar Bears in earning his first career win.

The game stayed tied at 1-1 through the scheduled seven innings, but Bates plated three runs in the top of the eighth, with a sacrifice fly by senior Jake Simon (Waterford, Conn.) and a two-run single by sophomore Ryan Sonberg(Windsor, Conn.). Sophomore Michael Spinosa(Charlottesville, Va.) locked down his first save by pitching a scoreless bottom of the eighth.

The Bobcats (7-12) play a non-conference game at Babson on Sunday at 4 p.m., then have seven home games in a row, starting with a 12 p.m. home game on Sunday against Husson.

Jenna Dannis '12
Ever since Bates' 11-8 loss to Tufts on March 30,Jenna Dannis(Milford, N.H.) has almost seemed like a different player. In the Tufts game, Dannis went without a point and saw the Jumbos pull away from an 8-8 tie to win. The junior All-American midfielder had scored just one point in her past two games, and through six games she had relatively modest scoring totals of five goals and three assists.But in the past four games, all wins for the Bobcats, Dannis has exploded for 15 goals and three assists, capped by Saturday's performance in a 15-11 win at Connecticut College, in which she scored a career-high six goals, the most by a Bates player in two years. On the week she collected nine goals, one assist, four ground balls, eight draw controls and three caused turnovers.

Dannis leads the NESCAc in draw controls per game (4.83), and is also among conference leaders in goals, points, caused turnovers and ground balls.

Dannis and the Bobcats (6-4) host the University of New England on Sunday at 1 p.m. in their penultimate home game of the season.