HERMON, Maine — A popular expression many high school softball coaches use to keep their players’ spirits high is, “all it takes is one.”
Even though the Bucksport softball team has been mired in an up-and-down first half of this season, a road victory over a tough Hermon squad could do wonders heading into the stretch portion of the Golden Bucks’ schedule.
Coach Mike Carrier’s club pounded out 13 hits and scored three unearned runs in the second inning en route to a 7-6 victory over the previously unbeaten Hawks.
“This is huge, they’re playing well and we’ve been up and down all year long and this is one of the better games we’ve played all year,” said Carrier, whose club improves to 5-3. Hermon, the top-ranked team in Class B, falls to 7-1.
It didn’t take long for the Bucks to get the bats going, with Rochelle Pelletier driving in two runs with a first-inning triple.
Hermon responded with three runs in the bottom half, including a solo homer by Sami Schultz and RBI singles from Gabby Bryant and McKayla Bates.
But Bucksport took the lead for good with three two-out runs in the top of the second, all unearned.
Mindy Pye had the only RBI of the inning with a single to the shortstop hole, while she and Sadie Wright both scored on errors.
Hermon committed four miscues on the afternoon.
“We did not play strong defensively, they hit the ball well, we made a lot of errors and it cost us a lot of runs and undoubtedly that was the factor in the game,” Hermon coach Stephanie Biberstein said.
Wright walked and scored on an error in the fourth and Bailey Blair, who went 4-for-4, drove in a key insurance run with a double in the sixth.
“I feel like we hit a lot better and we were more ready,” said Blair. “We were just pumped to come out and beat them.”
Bucks’ pitcher Abby Yeo settled down after the first, setting down eight straight Hawks at one point and allowing only four hits after the first, two of which came in the seventh.
“I don’t know what was up, but I pulled through,” said Yeo. “I was just more ready to go.”
With Hermon trailing 7-5 to open the seventh, the Hawks’ Monica Gallant led off with a single, went to second on a grounder to Yeo and scored on Ashley Thayer’s single to center.
Thayer went to third on a grounder to first, but Yeo struck out Bryant with a nasty curveball to shut the door.
“I have confidence in everyone in the field, so I knew that we could wrap it,” said Yeo, who aided her cause with a double and two singles.
Wright did her part with the bat and the glove, reaching base four times, scoring three runs and snaring a line drive to second off Bates’ bat with nobody out in the fourth.
“That was just reaction, I didn’t even think about that,” said Wright.
The Bucks had payback on their minds after losing a 5-4 decision to Hermon earlier in the season.
“We really wanted to come out and win this game, it hurt us at home when we lost that game by a run so we really wanted to come out and beat them on their home field,” Wright said.
Gallant and Schultz were Hermon’s lone repeat hitters; Gallant singled twice and scored two runs while Schultz had a single to go with her homer.