Sports

Tigers hold off Penquis’ seventh inning rally for first win of the season

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DEXTER — Trailing 4-2 to start the seventh inning of an April 27 Class C North softball contest, Penquis Valley High School nearly came back after scoring a run and then loading the bases with one out. A pitching change for the host Dexter Regional High School worked to perfection as Tiger freshman Avery Herrick recorded a strikeout and induced a ground ball out as the team held on for a 4-3 win and its first victory of the young season.

The Patriots began the top of the seventh with freshman pinch hitter Kassi Files, batting in the ninth spot, walking on four pitches and then stealing second base. A ground ball out kept Files at second and put the Tigers two outs away from ending the game.

Junior Faith Sickler singled to shallow centerfield — she led Penquis with two hits and and tied for the game-high — to move Files over to third. With sophomore Sydney Fowles at the plate, Sickler swiped second to put two runners in scoring position and the tying run at second base.

Fowles would double to centerfield to drive in Files and make the game 4-3, putting Sickler at third and having herself represent the go-ahead run at second. Junior clean-up hitter Megan Valvo then walked on four pitches to load the bases with one out and set the stage for a dramatic end to the inning one way or another.

After Valvo took her base sophomore starter Regan McNally was relieved for Herrick, who came over from third base. Herrick faced junior Katelyn Bolstridge and quickly went ahead with an 0-2 count. Herrick then got Bolstridge to swing and miss for a third strike to set the stage for the bases loaded with two outs.

Junior Lexi Goodard stepped into the batter’s box next and Herrick again got two quick strikes. From there a pitch missed the strike zone and a foul kept the at-bat going with the count at 1-2. Goodard made contact on pitch No. 5 as the ball was hit toward first base.

Sophomore Caitlyn Hardy scooped the ball up in her glove by the bag and she stepped on the base for the force out to end play. After a 0-2 start, the Tigers grabbed the first victory in 2018 and the team also handed Penquis its first defeat after the Patriots won the season opener.

The two squads spread out the scoring as neither scored more than a single run in any one half of an inning. For Dexter McNally helped her cause by driving in a pair of runs and junior Tory Asbury and senior Kaitlyn Webber both picked up a pair of hits. Hardy reached base in each of her three at-bats, singling, walking and getting hit by a pitch.

In addition to a pair of singles, Sickler also reached on an error and had a fielder’s choice and scored one of her team’s runs.

The teams are scheduled to play again in Milo at 4:30 p.m. on Monday, May 14.

SOFTBALL
Dexter 4,
Penquis 3
PEN 100 010 1 | 3
DEX 011 110 X | 4
Penquis: Sickler 2-2,
run 2 SB
Dexter: Asbury 2-2 2B;
Webber 2-4 RBI SB
WP — McNally 6.1 IP
3 runs 6 hits 3 BB 2 K
Save — Av. Herrick .2 IP
0 runs 0 hits 0 BB 1 K
LP — Valvo 6 IP
4 runs 9 hits 5 BB 5 K
Records: Penquis 1-1;
Dexter 1-2

Observer photo/Stuart Hedstrom
OUT AT THE PLATE — Penquis junior Camryn Rolfe tags Dexter sophomore Caitlyn Hardy at the plate on a throw from junior Katelyn Bolstridge for the third out of the bottom of the second during an April 27 contest between the regional rivals. Looking on is Penquis junior pitcher Megan Valvo and Dexter junior Ashley Downing. The Tigers would win the game 4-3, holding off a Penquis rally in the top of the seventh.

PO-spsoftpickle-18-18 23166222 :

Observer photo/Stuart Hedstrom
HARDY PICKLE — Dexter sophomore Caitlyn Hardy was caught in a pickle between third and home in the home half of the second inning during an April 27 contest between the Tigers and visiting Penquis. Patriot junior Katelyn Bolstridge would throw to classmate Camryn Rolfe at home for the out as Penquis junior pitcher Megan Valvo (12) backed up the play.

Observer photo/Stuart Hedstrom
TIGERS IN THE OUTFIELD — Dexter junior Ashley Downing makes the catch in right field as sophomore centerfielder Cloe Mountain looks on. A 4-3 victory on April 27 vs. Penquis was the first win of the young season for Dexter and the first defeat for the Patriots.

Observer photo/Stuart Hedstrom
WIN ON THE MOUND — Sophomore Regan McNally tossed the first 6.1 innings to earn the victory for Dexter, and freshman Avery Herrick recorded the final two outs to earn the save.

Observer photo/Stuart Hedstrom
COMPLETE GAME — Penquis junior Megan Valvo handled all the pitching duties for her team in an April 27 contest at Dexter, striking out five in six innings.

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