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Sydney Ames, the Kennebec Valley Athletic Conference’s Class A player of the year who powered the Skowhegan High School girls softball team to the Class A North championship, will continue her athletic career at Bangor’s Husson University.
The four-time KVAC Class A first-team selection was 15-0 in the circle during the 2019 regular season with an 0.77 earned run average and 109 strikeouts. She played center field for Skowhegan and hit .486 with 14 doubles and 29 runs scored.
Skowhegan finished 19-1, losing to Scarborough 11-1 in the state final as the Red Storm claimed their third straight state championship.
Ames and another Husson recruit, Bucksport’s Mikayla Tripp, are both coached by pitching guru Rick Roberts, who was the Eagles’ first-year pitching coach last season.
Tripp was the Penobscot Valley Conference Class C Player of the Year as she hit .651 and pitched the Bucks to the regional semifinals. She struck out 149 in 71 innings in her first season as the Bucks’ top hurler.
Diann Ramsey, who coached Husson to its second straight North Atlantic Conference championship and NCAA Division III Tournament berth in her first year at the helm, called both players dynamic.
“We’re very lucky to have both of them,” Ramsey said.
Before she took over in the circle, Tripp played a number of positions for Bucksport coach Mike Carrier.
“I can put her almost, literally, anywhere on the field and be confident she would be able to get the job done. She’s very, very, very good all of those positions,” Ramsey said. “She can play the outfield, she’s a very good catcher and I’ve seen her play shortstop.”
Ames has more experience in the circle but also could see considerable time in the outfield for Husson.
Ramsey said both recruits will be valuable utility players.
“One of the things that is critical about both of them is they’re not just a threat in the circle, they’re also going to contribute in other positions and it’s really important that you’re contributing in other ways along with what you’re providing in the circle,” she said.
Ramsey loves Ames’ competitiveness.
“That competitiveness shows through in her play and I appreciate her desire to constantly get better. I love that about her. She is also a good teammate and that’s very important. She carries herself very well in the circle. She has a presence. She’s confident but humble,” Ramsey said. “She’s also aggressive on the basepaths and I like that. And she’s smart.”
Ames said she likes the idea of having Roberts as her pitching coach.
“And they have the program I want, occupational therapy,” she said. “I want to be able to get a job when I get out of college.”
Tripp said it is “amazing. It’s an honor to have coach Ramsey recruit me. I met all the girls and they’re great. So I’m really excited.”