SKOWHEGAN, Maine — The Skowhegan Area High School baseball team had parlayed early season victories over Bangor and Hampden Academy into a second-place ranking in Eastern Maine Class A entering Monday’s play.
Maintaining that status may be problematic after 11 members of the team were suspended for four games beginning this week.
Skowhegan athletic administrator Don Finley did not offer specifics about the case, but did say Monday that 11 varsity baseball players had been found in violation of the school’s athletic code.
Under school policy the players are suspended for 20 percent of the Indians’ regular-season schedule, in this case their next four games beginning with Monday afternoon’s contest at Mt. Blue of Farmington.
The suspended players also will miss Wednesday’s home game against Bangor, a road game Friday at Cony of Augusta and a home game next Monday against defending Class A state champion Messalonskee of Oakland.
The suspended players would be eligible to return for Skowhegan’s Wednesday, May 15, game at Brewer. The regular season for high school baseball ends on May 29 and playoffs begin on June 4.
Finley said the school will still be able to field both varsity and junior varsity teams for the games against Mt. Blue, with 10 players participating in the varsity contest at Farmington and nine players available for the junior varsity game at Memorial Field in Skowhegan.
“There are going to be games,” he said.
Skowhegan played its most recent game with a full varsity roster last Tuesday when it scored a 5-4 victory over previously undefeated Hampden Academy to move into first place in the Eastern A Heal points at the time.
Coach Rick York’s club had a bye in its Kennebec Valley Athletic Conference schedule on Friday, meaning the game suspensions did not take effect until Monday.
Skowhegan is off to a 5-2 start this spring. The Indians boast a veteran team, with 10 seniors and eight juniors listed on the Indians’ 21-player preseason roster.