Dirigo girls push Bucksport to limit before bowing, 2-0
STATE RUNNERUPS -- The Dirigo softball team gave powerhouse Bucksport their toughest battle of the season before bowing out, 2-0. The Western C champions made their first-ever appearance in the state championship contest. (Times photo by Bruce Farrin)
Dirigo first baseman Ambyr Wilson stretches to make this putout against the Bucksport runner Kacie Hurd. (Photo by Art Chamberlin)
STANDISH -- It was an entirely new atmosphere for the Dirigo softball, however, its bid for another history-making day was derailed, in one hour and seven minutes. The players seemed ready for the challenge, but was unable to seal the deal in the program's first-ever appearance in the Class C state championship game.
A couple of hits and an error led to two runs in the fifth inning as unbeaten Bucksport held on for a 2-0 win on sun-drenched Bailey Field.
Dirigo certainly gave the favored Golden Bucks all they could handle. The senior battery of pitcher Alyssa Wade, who scattered seven hits in going the distance, and Alyssa Charity kept the potent Bucksport offense at bay. But the No. 4 Cougars, who had won their first-ever regional crown four days earlier at Saint Joseph's College by rallying for a 2-1 triumph over Sacopee Valley, was held to two singles, both by senior centerfielder Mariah Larson.
"A big art of our game is to get our bats going early," said Dirigo coach Sara Thurston. "We just weren't able to do that today."
Bucksport pitcher Cassidy Adams struck out six and only allowed four Cougars to reach base in the game. Larson had a bunt in the fifth and a two-out single in the seventh.
Wade survived a bases-loaded jam in the first, but then held the Bucks hitless until the fourth. It was the most competitive game Bucksport (2011 Class B regional champs) had been in the entire season. Cassidy had 13 shutouts.
Dirigo recorded the first out in fifth, but Shelby Redmond singled and a walk put two runners on with two outs. Kacie Hurd hit a grounder to third baseman Gretchen Bradbury threw to first baseman Ambyr Wilson, the high throw caused Wilson to step back. Redmond kept running and a throw to the plate was wide. Two runs scored on the play.
Dirigo threatened in the bottom of the inning, but could solve Cassidy. Larson reached on a slow roller and Bradbury was safe on an error. A strikeout and comebacker to the mound ended the frame. Wade, second baseman Natalie Bolduc, shortstop Tasha DeRoche and Charity all went hitless.