June 20, 2018
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Familiar softball powers back in East A, B finals

By Ryan McLaughlin, BDN Staff

Brewer and Bucksport, which are traditional powers in Classes A and B, respectively, have steamrolled through their postseason games en route to the regional finals.

Coach Skip Estes’ Witches scrimmaged the Golden Bucks during the preseason and Estes was impressed with Bucks’ righthander Abby Yeo.

“They’re very strong hitting and Abby Yeo’s improvement from one year to the next is phenomenal,” he said. “I felt they were probably the best team that I scrimmaged all year.”

Coach Mike Carrier’s club has showed why this postseason, as Yeo has given up only six hits in two games. That includes a four-hit masterpiece of Winslow in a 5-0 semifinal win Saturday, during which Yeo struck out 10.

The Bucks, who last won a regional title in 2006 when the team also claimed the state championship, also showcases a balanced offense. Kacie Hurd was one of the offensive heroes Saturday with a two-run double.

Bucksport and Caribou battle for the East B title Tuesday at 7 p.m. at Brewer’s Coffin Field while Brewer faces Messalonskee of Oakland in the Class A game at Cony High in Augusta on Wednesday at 7 p.m.

Bucksport meets a Caribou club which has upset top-seeded Medomak Valley of Waldoboro and No. 4 Old Town to reach the regional final.

Junior righthander Emily Staples has shut down both the Panthers and Coyotes, giving up just two runs while striking out 30 batters.

Brewer is back in the Class A final for the first time since 2008, when Estes’ club defeated Bangor 2-1 en route to the program’s first state championship.

Brewer and Messalonskee split during the regular season, each winning on each other’s home field. The Witches’ lefty-righty pitching duo of Emily Cox and Morgan Haradon has yet to yield a run in the playoffs.

“I’m extremely happy with Morgan and Emily, they’re pitching very well,” Estes said. “I figure we’re a balanced team: We can hit, we can pitch, we can play defense, but so can they.”

Cox and Haradon collaborated for a one-hitter Saturday in a 2-0 semifinal victory over Skowhegan, while Messalonskee has looked strong in victories over Erskine Academy of South China and Cony.

“I like their corner defense, they hit very well, and overall they’re a very athletic team, so that’s why they’re where they are,” Estes said.

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