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Cougars finish regular season in style
DIXFIELD -- It was fitting that Spencer Ross, Arik Fenstermacher and Justin Conant started things for the Dirigo baseball team on their senior night in their final regular season home game Harlow Park.
Then it was sophomores Hunter Ross and TJ Frost who came alive to end the action as the Cougars pulled away with a 12-2 win to complete a sweep against Madison.
Three weeks ago, Spencer Ross banged out five hits and Cody St. Germain pitched a complete game in a 11-3 triumph at Madison.
Dirigo (14-0), ranked No. 1 in Class C, started strong as Ross hit a lead off double to jump start a five-run first inning. Caleb Turner hit an RBI grounder, St. Germain had an RBI single and the younger Ross laced an opposite-field two-run single.
“I had had only six at bats all season,” said Ross, who walked twice and added an RBI single. “I guess I thrived today. Coach gave me a start and told me that I was the only player on the team without a hit.”
The Cougars trend continued because following the torrid start, the offense went silent against reliever M.S. Handers until the fourth. Turner doubled, Fenstermacher was hit by a pitch and Ben Holmes smashed a long two-run double. In the fifth, Hunter Ross walked and Frost unloaded an opposite field triple. Frost raced home when the throw missed the cut off man.
”We got some timely hits today,” said Dirigo coach Ryan Palmer. “That’s something that had been lacking at times. We make a couple mistakes on the base paths, but came up with strong defensive plays.”
Catcher Jake Dowland ran down a relay throw that rolled to the back stop and threw out a runner at home plate. St. Germain picked a runner off second base and only allowed one run in the third, after notching a strikeout and a groundout to get out of a bases-loaded jam. The junior scattered three hits, had six strikeouts, but had control issues as he hit two batters and walked four.
“Coach has taught us not to underestimate any team,” said Frost, who hit a two—run single in the sixth to end the contest. "Everyone brings their A-game and wants to knock us off.”