|Washington Academy||Ellsworth High School|
ELLSWORTH, Maine — Sophomore righthander Gage Feeney pitched a three-hit shutout and scored the only run his team needed as Washington Academy of East Machias edged Ellsworth 2-0 in a Penobscot Valley Conference Class B baseball game on Tuesday afternoon.
WA, playing in its second and final season as a Class B team before returning to Class C by enrollment next year, is now 4-2 this spring. Ellsworth falls to 1-7.
Feeney struck out 12 batters, walked three and took a no-hitter into the sixth inning before settling for his first victory of the season with a 112-pitch performance.
He was particularly dominant early in the contest, striking out six batters in the first two innings — including four in the bottom of the second alone as Ellsworth’s Dustin Smelley reached base on a third-strike wild pitch to open the inning.
Feeney overcame four WA errors and did not allow a hit until Conor Maguire beat out an infield single to load the bases with two outs in the Ellsworth sixth.
He then got out of that jam as WA center fielder Cameron Varney went to one knee to grab a sinking liner by Mitchell Domagala to end the inning,
Ellsworth threatened again in the seventh, loading the bases on a leadoff infield hit by Cody Del Conte and a two-out walk to Steven Mahon followed by a single to right by Jacob Maguire — the only Eagles’ hit to reach the outfield.
Up came No. 3 hitter Brandon Braley, but Feeney worked his way back from a 3-0 count to get the final out as Braley hit a soft liner to WA second baseman Kyle Taylor.
Feeney had to be nearly perfect to outduel Conor Maguire, another sophomore righthander who also pitched a complete-game three-hitter.
While Feeney overpowered the Ellsworth lineup at times, Maguire pitched to contact and relied on errorless defensive play behind him to subdue the Raiders.
Maguire struck out three batters and walked one while throwing just 83 pitches.
Maguire retired the first 12 batters he faced before Feeney led off the WA fifth by blasting a triple to deep right field. Feeney scored one out later as Andrew Hall grounded out to second base.
The Raiders padded their lead in the top of the seventh. Taylor led off with a ground single to right-center and went to second on a walk to Fred MacLean. Taylor advanced to third on a flyout to center by Feeney, then scored as Varney hit a chopper to the mound.