OLD TOWN, Maine — Old Town jumped out to a five-run lead against visiting Foxcroft Academy on Thursday afternoon appeared on its way to a comfortable high school softball victory.
The Ponies from Dover-Foxcroft had other ideas. They rallied to pull within two runs and had a runner on third with nobody out in the sixth inning.
That’s when Old Town senior Abbie Roy bore down. The right-hander, who had been nicked for the three runs after replacing Emma Crews at the outset of the fifth inning, struck out the side to maintain the lead. Raegan Glidden came on and pitched a scoreless seventh to preserve the Coyotes’ 5-3 triumph.
“I just focused on hitting my spots,” said the hard-throwing Roy. “That was my biggest struggle last year. So I really buckled down and focused on it.”
Logan Gardner and Gabby Cody each stroked two singles to lead Old Town.
Amber Richard posted three hits for Foxcroft Academy and Ava Rayfield beat out two bunt singles.
Crews tossed four innings of shutout ball for the Coyotes. She struck out nine and allowed four hits, three of the infield variety. She walked one and pitched out of a bases-loaded one-out jam in the fourth by posting two strikeouts.
“I thought I did pretty good. They were a fun team to play against. They had the strongest hitters I’ve seen. It was fun,” said Crews, who featured a rise ball, a drop, a curve and an occasional screwball.
Rayfield, who had a nifty changeup, pitched well in defeat for Foxcroft. She allowed eight hits with two strikeouts and no walks.
Richard singled to open the sixth, stole second and went to third on Meghan Spooner’s bunt single. Richard scored on a wild pitch and the alert Spooner raced all the way to third on it.
Roy then pitched out of the jam.
Old Town built its lead with three runs in the second inning and two more in the third.
In the second, Gardner singled, stole second and continued to third on a throwing error. She scored when Delani McLaughlin reached on a throwing error by the second baseman after her grounder glanced off Rayfield’s glove.
Miranda Leclair sliced a double to left to score her and Leclair crossed the plate when Cote punched a ground-ball single to right.
Saige Evans stung a sharp single to start the third inning and stole second. Gardner reached on a swinging-bunt single and then stole second.
McLaughlin and Leclair plated a run each by putting the ball on the ground back to the pitching circle.
Foxcroft began its comeback with two runs in the fifth. The speedy Rayfield beat out a bunt single, stole second, moved to third on a wild pitch and beat the throw to the plate on Leah Hill’s bunt.
Hill eventually moved up on a wild pitch and scored on Sheryl Chase’s groundout.
Foxcroft freshman left fielder Samantha Ossenfort made the defensive play of the game with an acrobatic, diving catch to rob Crews of a hit in the second inning.