May 10, 2013

HIGH SCHOOL SOFTBALL: Morse leads Rams over Indians

By Matt DiFilippo mdifilippo@centralmaine.com
Staff Writer

AUGUSTA -- Cony hit more than well enough to win a slugfest, and Sonja Morse threw more than well enough to win a pitchers' duel. As Skowhegan realized, it's tough to compete with that.

click image to enlarge

SAFE: Monmouth Academy’s Kylie Kemp, right, slides safely into second base ahead of the tag by Madison Memorial High School’s Kayla Booker on Friday in Madison.

Staff photo/Michael G. Seamans

Against a quality Skowhegan team, Cony drilled three doubles and two home runs, while Morse fired a two-hitter with 11 strikeouts in five innings. The Rams cruised to a 12-0 victory Friday afternoon in a game that was called after the top of the fifth by the mercy rule.

"The kids all played well," Cony coach Rocky Gaslin said. "Everyone got hits. We made the plays in the field. And Sonja looked awesome, of course."

Skowhegan (7-3) tried to jump out in front early and hold on, and the Indians nearly accomplished the first part. Shelby Obert led off with a bunt single, stole second and raced to third on a passed ball with one out.

Morse got the next two batters on a popout and a strikeout and Cony catcher Alyssah Dennett decided to start making her day a little better. Leading off for Cony (9-0), Dennett cranked the second pitch over the left-field fence for a 1-0 lead.

"Before the game, I wasn't feeling very good -- I got sick in the bathroom -- so I didn't really know what I was going to do this game," Dennett said. "Up to bat, I wasn't really thinking about it. The past few games, I've just been thinking about hitting too much. I think, since I wasn't really thinking about it, it just came naturally."

In the bottom of the second, Cony scored four unearned runs after a two-out Skowhegan error. The Rams added another run in the third when Hannah Reis drove home Maggie Russell with a sacrifice fly.

At this point, it was 6-0, and everyone knew that Morse and a six-run lead is a pretty safe bet. After Obert's bunt single, Skowhegan's only baserunner was Kaitlyn Therriault, who reached on a dropped popup in the second and doubled to left-center in the fourth.

"Sonja always throws awesome," Dennett said. "It's so good to have her on our team."

Apparently, the Rams were just warming up over the first few innings, because they really showed off their considerable power in the fifth. Dennett led off with a double to left-center for her third hit of the day and Arika Brochu followed with a blast over the center-field fence to make it 8-0. After singles by Morse and Molly Russell, Olivia Deeves rocketed a double to left-center for two more runs. Sydney Cheever sent home the final two runs with a double.

"I think we all work off each other," Dennett said. "If somebody starts off the game with a good hit, then I think everybody else can start off the game with hits."

The Indians looked shell-shocked by the end of the game, but they've been in this position before. Skowhegan lost 14-2 to Brewer in the fifth game of the season and bounced back to win its next four in a row. The Indians host Messalonskee on Monday.

"There's no question the kids were probably not in a good mental aspect about in the fourth inning of (this) game," Skowhegan coach Lee Johnson said. "Hopefully, we can find a way to regroup and get ready for Messalonskee. We knew this was going to be a tough stretch. Like we say, 'It's not what you are today, it's what you are at the end of the year.' So hopefully we can find a way to get a little better by then."

Matt DiFilippo -- 861-9243

mdifilippo@centralmaine.com

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