ORONO, Maine — Tyler Eddy’s recent streak of dominance on the mound continued Monday afternoon, as the Orono Red Riots defeated the Stearns Minutemen 8-0 in high school baseball action at Mahaney Diamond.
Eddy threw a complete game, holding Stearns to only one hit. The righthander set down 12 of the first 13 batters he faced and struck out 10 as Orono improved to 4-4 and Stearns slipped to 6-2.
Eddy allowed Stearns’ first baserunner to reach on a walk in the third inning, but promptly picked him off at first to end the inning. Opposing pitcher Kyle McVey broke up Eddy’s no-hit bid in the fifth inning with a single.
“I really just came into it focusing on throwing strikes,” Eddy said, noting the defense behind him provided a boost of confidence.
That confidence provided him the opportunity to almost obtain his second no-hitter in as many outings. Eddy grew stronger as the game went on, striking out the last three batters he faced. “My breaking ball wasn’t working the first couple innings, but once I got it to finally break I got a little bit more confidence in throwing that with less than two strikes,’’ he said.
Orono coach Don Joseph praised Eddy for his durability and ability to buckle down and find the strike zone.
“He threw about 70 pitches and didn’t have great command of his curveball, but when the going got tough he was able to locate and that’s what you want from a competitor,” said Joseph.
“Tyler did exactly what he was supposed to do,” Joseph added.
On the other side of the ball, Eddy led Orono with a triple and two singles and drove in two. Orono collected two runs in the first inning on an RBI triple by Eddy, who then scored on a groundout by first baseman Cam Dwyer.
The Orono bats stayed quiet after that until producing a five-run fourth inning to break the game open. Stearns committed three consecutive errors in the fourth and Orono baserunners capitalized using their speed to move up into scoring position on each miscue. The scoring was capped off with an RBI groundout by second baseman Justin White in the bottom of the sixth.
Orono was seeking redemption for the 15-3 loss at the hands of Stearns earlier in the year in Millinocket, and Joseph knew his team would come out hungry.
“They flat out outplayed us earlier in the year,” said Joseph, as Orono was without some players in the their first meeting of the year due to various reasons.
“We’re starting to get the train going,” said Joseph, “We weren’t struggling with the pieces, but more getting our players the playing time that we’d like.”
Joseph knew that it was just a matter of time before his team would hit their stride and said they could now play the kind of baseball they were capable of.
“Now it’s just focusing, staying disciplined, and proving what we can do and are capable of doing,” he said.