Raider softball achieves perfection for first time

By Wayne E. Rivet
Staff Writer

For the first time, Fryeburg Academy has reached softball perfection.

The Raiders completed the school’s first undefeated regular season with a hard-earned 1-0 victory over Falmouth on Memorial Day to finish 16-0.

Before the bus ride to Falmouth, Raider Coach Fred Apt informed his players that he had been interviewed by a daily newspaper about the upcoming game against the playoff-bound Yachtsmen.

“I told the reporter that this could be a ‘trap’ game for us, coming off of graduation,” Coach Apt said. “If we play Fryeburg softball and we get beat, then the other team deserved to win. If we play Fryeburg softball, I like our chances.”

This one proved to be the ultimate defensive battle.

Fryeburg scored the game’s only run in the first inning as Carla Tripp walked, stole second and third base. The aggressive approach paid off as Falmouth’s catcher misfired to third as the ball sailed into the outfield, enabling Tripp to score easily.

From there, it turned into a classic pitchers duel between FA’s Sarah Harriman and Falmouth’s Freedman. Fryeburg would strand five base runners and Falmouth four as both teams turned in good defensive plays.

Harriman retired 14 of the last 15 hitters as Falmouth failed to put a runner at third base. Harriman helped her own cause by fielding bunt attempts down the first base line and making accurate tosses to first baseman Ashley Watkins.

Watkins, a senior captain, made the catch of the game when she skied to snag a shot down the line for the second out in the seventh inning. A videographer from Channel 8 News captured the amazing catch, which surely had either double or triple possibilities. Rightfielder Brie Pelkie made a nice running catch of a sinking drive to end the contest.

Tripp was 2-for-2 on the day with the run scored and 3 stolen bases. Charlotte Lewis and Brie Pelkie each had hits, and were left stranded at second base. Maddie Pearson nearly plated one run with a shot up the middle, but Freedman snagged the hard liner to end a threat.

Harriman pitched a four-hitter with 9 strikeouts and no walks.

Not only did the victory seal the first perfect regular season ever by Fryeburg Academy softball, but it also marked the fifth straight year the Raiders have won the Western Maine Conference regular season title.

Fryeburg will be the top seed in the upcoming Class B West tournament, which begins June 9.

Not close this time

Lake Region gave the Raiders a scare the last time the two teams met as FA rallied with three runs in the seventh inning to pull out a 7-6 victory.

Lightning would not strike twice.

Behind a strong hitting attack, the Raiders bounced the Lakers 11-1 last Wednesday in Naples. The Raiders banged out 19 hits, scoring 10 runs in the middle innings.

The Lakers started the scoring in the first as Abby Craffey walked and scored on a RBI double by pitcher Allison Clark.

Fryeburg would take the lead in the third inning, scoring three times. Carla Tripp led off with a single and stole second. Maddie Pearson followed with a single. Ashley Watkins knocked in the first run with a hit, and then Charlotte Lewis would add a two-run double.

In the fourth inning, Fryeburg kept the pressure on the Lakers, with six more hits and RBI singles by Watkins and Lewis and an RBI triple by Sarah Harriman.

In the sixth inning, the Raiders added three runs highlighted by a Lewis RBI single.

Tripp paced the FA attack with a 3-for-5 day with 2 runs scored. Maddie Pearson was 2-for-5 with 2 runs scored and a RBI. Ashley Watkins was 2-for-5 with 2 runs and RBI. Lewis was a perfect 4-for-4 with 1 run and 4 RBI.

Sarah Harriman pitched a complete game allowing 2 hits, striking out nine and walking two.

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