Offensive depth helps Bangor baseball rally past Lawrence

Posted May 16, 2014, at 8:11 p.m.

BANGOR, Maine — The Bangor High School baseball team was attempting Friday to rebound from a narrow loss two days earlier at undefeated Messalonskee of Oakland, but the Lawrence Bulldogs were an unwilling foil early in their matchup at Mansfield Stadium.

But once their offense got on track there was no slowing the Rams, who scored 12 runs in their final four at-bats to erase a 3-1 deficit and secure a 13-6 victory.

Bangor, second ranked in Eastern Maine Class A, is now 8-2 while seventh-seeded Lawrence dips to 4-5.

Sophomore Ryan Brookings had the biggest of Bangor’s 14 hits in the game, a wind-aided three-run double to deep left field to cap off a five-run rally in the bottom of the third inning that gave the Rams a 6-3 lead.

“I thought it was just a fly ball and they were going to catch it but it kept going,” said Brookings, who hit a first-pitch fastball off Lawrence starter Joe LeClair. “It gave us a three-run lead and it felt pretty good.”

That was one of two hits by Brookings, part of an offensive onslaught by the five-through-nine spots in the Bangor batting order that produced a combined 12 hits in 18 at-bats, seven runs scored and 11 RBIs.

Sam Huston led that contingent with three singles and three runs, while Brookings, Hunter Boyce, Johnny Cote and No. 9 hitter Kyle Stevenson — who entered the game batting .545 — had two hits apiece and Brendan Moore added a two-run pinch single.

“Kyle Stevenson could be a leadoff hitter for us or any team,” said Bangor coach Jeff Fahey.

Sophomore lefthander Trevor DeLaite earned the pitching win, striking out nine batters and walking one while scattering eight hits over 5⅓ innings before giving way to reliever James Prescott, who yielded an RBI single to the first batter he faced and then retired five in a row to close out the game.

A Lawrence lineup that included seven left-handed batters produced several hard-hit balls early in the contest, including an RBI double to left-center by Matt Champney that drive home Cody Martin to give the Bulldogs a 1-0 lead in the top of the first.

Boyce’s RBI double in the bottom of the second tied the game, but Lawrence struck for two more runs in the top of the third on run-producing singles by LeClair and Derek Bowen.

But DeLaite (3-0) retired eight of the next nine batters he faced, aided by Bangor’s go-ahead rally in the bottom of the third.

The Rams followed that up with another run in the fourth as Andrew Hillier (2 for 3, two runs scored) hit a two-out single to drive home Stevenson and a three-run uprising in the fifth that included RBI singles by Boyce and Cote to extend their lead to 10-3.

“We got down early, but there’s no quit in these kids,” said Fahey. “There’s no panic, which sometimes drives me crazy because it looks like there’s no sense of urgency, but they just plug along and peck away and we hit the ball so well that we were able to score some runs and get back into it.”

Martin and J.T. Nutting had two hits apiece for Lawrence, while Champney and Kyle McLain each had an RBI double.

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