SOUTH PORTLAND – This was supposed to be a good early season test for the softball teams of South Portland and Kennebunk high schools.

Only the Riots aced it.

With Alexis Bogdanovich throwing a one-hitter and her teammates knocking out 15 hits, South Portland cruised past the Rams 16-1 in a five-inning game shortened by the 12-run rule Monday afternoon at Wainwright Field.

Bogdanovich, Stephanie Thibeault and Kaitlin Norton each had three hits, with Thibeault driving in four runs and Norton three, to pace the South Portland hitting attack.

“I didn’t expect this,” said Ralph Aceto, coach of the Riots. “Last year it was a 1-0 game between us. I still expect (Kennebunk) to be there at the end of the year.

“But this was one of those days where we put the ball where they weren’t.

“I’m very pleased with the way we played.”

As he should. The Riots (2-0) scored three in the first, four in the second and nine in the fourth.

Bogdanovich, meanwhile, was nearly untouchable. She allowed only a bloop single to Kelsey Livermore in the fifth and struck out 10 — seven on called third strikes as she worked the inside part of the plate to perfection.

At one point, she accounted for eight consecutive outs with strikeouts as the Rams (1-1) could not handle the inside pitch.

“It was just a good spot and the ump liked it,” she said.

Thibeault, her catcher, said it was more than just that.

“I thought (Bogdanovich) was amazing,” said Thibeault. “She hit her spots all game. With the three-feet difference (in the pitching rubber this year, from 40 feet to 43), everyone is pounding the ball.

“But with Lexie, you couldn’t tell the difference.”

It helped, said Bogdanovich, that her team scored early. “It motivated me, kept me going.”

And, said Aceto, it all started with leadoff hitter Danielle DiBiase, who fell behind 0-2 to Kennebunk’s Hannah King, then dropped a single to right-center.

“She got on base the first time up, just like she got on base the first time up in our first game,” said Aceto. “We scored then, we scored this time. That’s what you want from your leadoff hitter. They start things.

“You can tell the way the game is going to go. That’s why I stress every game to put a run up in the first. It sets the tone.”

Bogdanovich followed with a one-out double — the first of her three extra-base hits.

Then Thibeault scored DiBiase with a single to left. Norton drove in two with a single to center.

In the four-run second, Bogdanovich drove in a run with a double, Thibeault two with a single and Norton one with a triple.

Amanda Linscott had the big hit in the nine-run fourth, a three-run triple.

“This was disappointing,” said Janelle Bouchard, Kennebunk’s all-state sophomore catcher. “But it will be a team-building loss.

“We have to bounce back. We have to learn from it and get better.”

 

Staff Writer Mike Lowe can be contacted at 791-6422 or at: [email protected]