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Cougars win lone encounter with Falcons
DIXFIELD -- It's not always how things begin in a baseball game, but when Dirigo steps up his performance the results can be electrifying and that's exactly what transpired at sunny Harlow Park.
Ben Holmes and Tyler Frost each had two hits and a combined seven runs batted into complement a potent offense as the Cougars triumphed with a 12-2 mercy rule win against Mountain Valley.
It was the lone meeting between the rivals during the regular season and with one loss each, something had to give. Dirigo has owned the series, with four straight mercy-ruled game wins over Mountain Valley in 2010 and 2011. But it was the Falcons who had enjoyed a hefty winning margin against the Cougars in the previous two decades.
The teams had been locked in a competitive contest early, with starting pitchers Adam Volkernick and Holmes. Dirigo led 3-1 when they broke the game open in the bottom of the third inning.
Cody St. Germain and Spencer Trenoweth each walked and scored on Tyler Frost two-run double off Falcon Kyle Gauvin, who had started the inning in relief. Brett Whittemore added an RBI single.
MV had taken a 1-0 lead in the top of the first when Holmes failed to throw strikes. Volkernick drew a lead off walk, Zac Radcliffe popped out, Izaak Mills was hit by a pitch and Gauvin walked to load the bases. Volkernick scored on a wild pitch. The tested the Cougar defense and lost, with Catcher Jake Dowland tagging Falcon runners out at home, on throws by Caleb Turner and Hunter Ross.
Holmes regrouped in the second by striking out Josh Rainey and Ryan Nicols, with Dylan Acers grounding out.
Dirigo scored in all five innings and also made things happen with aggressiveness on the base paths. Chad Snowman (two hits, two runs) stole home for the second time this spring. The Cougars scored three runs in the fourth inning, the key blows was a Holmes' RBI double and a RBI single by Tyler Frost, who had two singles and scored twice.
Mountain Valley simply couldn’t get anything going until the top of the fifth against Cougar reliever Kaine Hutchins. Volkernick and Radcliffe each singled and Volkernick scored.
In the bottom of the fifth, the Falcon brought in Sean Murphy to pitch. TJ Frost singled past the first baseman, Robbie Babb was hit by a pitch and Holmes hit a two-run double to end the game. Holmes fanned the side in the second and third, including Adam Volkernick on a called third strike.
Falcon baserunner Adam Volkernick checks for the ball as he rounds third before running home to score without a throw. (Times photo by Bruce Farrin)
Delivering to the plate here is Mountain Valley reliever Kyle Gauvin. (Times photo by Bruce Farrin)