STANDISH—When Bonny Eagler Mackenzie Emery belted a two-RBI double in the bottom of the second vs. visiting Massabesic on Monday, May 20, she basically iced the cake: Emery’s shot put the Scots up 5-0 on the Mustangs, who would tally a few of their own before the close of the contest – a few, but not enough. Final score: 8-3.
The Scots, it turns out, were well-rested for the matchup.
“We had a boatload of games last week,” head coach Jan Corliss said. “We were supposed to play at Noble Friday; it was raining; I got a text from one of my Captains saying the Captains had talked at school, and they’re pooped. They’re tired. They’d been taking AP tests, we’ve been playing. Can we have a modified practice? I told them, ‘If we don’t play, we’re not practicing. You take three days and relax.’
“And you saw what happened at the first of the game. They come out fired up, ready to rock ‘n roll.”
Bonny Eagle went up 3-0 in the first. Kailee Cummings, in the circle for the Scots, downed the Mustangs one-two-three (including two Ks) in the top of the inning, and then Emery, Emma Burnham and Sydney Gillingham all scored in the bottom of the stretch. Emery and Burnham both singled, as did Makala Greene, for whom Gillingham stepped in as a pinch-runner.
Massabesic stumbled one-two-three again through the top of the second (with Cummings throwing another K). Scot Hannah Kaspereen then kicked off the bottom of the inning with a line single to rightfield; Kaspereen bumped over to second when Meg Champagne followed her to the plate and got hit by a pitch. Both girls rounded to home on Emery’s double, which actually landed her at third thanks to an error, a drop, by the Mustangs’ centerfielder.
Finally, Emery reached home on a Sam Averill single – or, what should’ve been a single. Averill started for second, but realized she wouldn’t make it and dove back to first. Alas, she dove back a bit too late and found herself caught out.
“It’s [another] new group,” Corliss said of her lineup. “I had to make changes again today for an injury. I had to take my second base and make her shortstop four games ago. So it’s been that kind of year. We’ve got a pretty solid infield now; it’s just a matter now of getting our bats going – which, today, they did, for the first three innings. And then we just sort of sat on the lead a little bit.”
Greene scored in the third for the Scots, arriving home on a Kaspereen single (Kaspereen herself narrowly, beautifully beat out the throw to first that would’ve booted her back to the dugout). And Averill scored in the fourth for the home team, outpacing a throw to first to reach base safely, rounding to third on a Burnham deep double to centerfield and racing home on a passed ball during Greene’s at-bat.
Massabesic threatened in the top of the fourth, loading the bases with no outs. Cummings, though, mainted her composure and led her girls in escaping danger by throwing three straight strikeouts.
“That earned her the game ball for today!” Corliss said.
The Mustangs did manage to notch a pair in the top of the fifth – Grace Tutt and Ashley Day crossed the plate for the Mustangs – and another in the top of the sixth, when Emily Davison pulled a solo homer from her bag of tricks.
“The kid who hit the homerun, we took her low and inside,” Corliss said, “and she just golfed that thing right over fence. She went out and got it – and it was a great pitch. She earned it; good for her.”
But the gone-ball was one of very few blemishes on Cummings’s performance. Corliss praised her pitcher a bit more: “She was hitting the spots. She’s not overpowering, but she can locate it. And when she’s on, locating it, like she was today, it’s tough to hit. Because we move it around, the ball spins and she’s got a good defense behind her.”
“When she’s on, she can bring some pretty good head,” Corliss continued. “But I used her screwball once, I think, maybe twice. And I think I used her curveball twice. Everything else was heat, location. I think I used her change once, too.”
And that was all she proverbially wrote. Morgan Drinkwater capped the Scots’ defensive day with a slick grab on a Massabesic line drive to centerfield in the top of the seventh. 8-3 the final, then, as the No. 9 Scots jumped to 6-6 and the No. 4 Mustangs slid to 8-4. Thornton currently leads A South at 14-1 with Scarborough nipping at their heels at 12-0.
“This was our best today,” Corliss said of her girls’ work so far this spring. “Had we played like this, probably we would’ve beaten Biddeford, and South Portland. The Westbrook game was interesting. Those three, I’d like to have those back. And we may play them again, I don’t know. We’ll see.”
The Scots travel to Marshwood on Tuesday the 21st and Sanford the following day.
Adam Birt can be reached at [email protected] Follow him on Twitter: @CurrentSportsME.
Kailee Cummings pulls the trigger on a pitch in an excellent outing vs. the Mustangs.
Emma Burnham buckets a Mustangs fly ball to rightfield.
Hannah Kaspereen leads off second base.
Makala Greene leans into the play at her post on first base as a Massabesic runner leaps away towards second.
Meaghan Champage wrestles with an incoming grounder at second base.
Sam Averill careens toward third, ultimately aiming for home.