There’s a chance that two of the best pitchers in the state won’t be available for the playoffs. Scott Heath of Westbrook and Jamie Ross of Deering could be out for different reasons.

Heath felt pain in his left arm Tuesday when he threw a pitch in the second inning against Cheverus. Heath was taken out, then returned in the outfield to help his team with his bat.

Heath said Wednesday he was resting his arm and his progress may be day to day. There’s a chance he could pitch in the playoffs, but there’s also a chance he could be shut down for the season.

While he wants to help the Blue Blazes in their quest for an elusive Class A state title, there are larger issues at stake. Heath has a scholarship to play for the University of Maine.

Ross is healthy, unlike last year, and pitching great. But he signed a Division II football scholarship with Sacred Heart University of Fairfield, Conn., and is scheduled to start orientation and classes beginning Sunday. It’s unsure if Ross will be able to make it back for Thursday’s quarterfinal or for any other game if the Rams advance.

Heath has a 5-0 record. Ross is 4-1.

“It doesn’t look good,” said Deering Coach Mark Sutton on the prospects of having his team’s No. 1 pitcher and cleanup hitter for the playoffs.

“We probably won’t know until Sunday. Unfortunately his classes are on Tuesday and Thursday. Jamie has been throwing very well in the last three games, averaging 10 to 12 strikeouts a game. If he’s not in the tournament, who knows what can happen? I have confidence in Sammy (Balzano) and Nick (DiBiase). They have pitched very well.”

Ross has enjoyed his best season at the plate, hitting a power-accented .470.

Without Ross in the lineup, Sutton said he would move DiBiase from fifth to fourth in the batting order.

College scholarship athletes often start classes early to help lessen their academic load during the season.

It’s been a tough year for starting pitchers in the Telegram League. First, Luke Fernandes of Marshwood was sidelined with arm trouble. Then Joey Royer of Cheverus came down with tendinitis and now Heath could have a problem. Cheverus Coach Mac McKew said Royer could be available for an inning during a game.

Ross and Sean Murphy of Westbrook were sidelined with arm and shoulder inflammations a year ago and saw limited innings.

SPENCER COUCH of Falmouth gave the Gould Academy of Bethel baseball program a big boost this season with his pitching and hitting. Couch, a junior, pitched a complete game each time out, giving up no more than three hits per game and averaging 10 strikeouts.

Two years ago, Gould didn’t win a game. This season he went 8-0 in the Maine Association of Independent Schools. This was Couch’s second season playing for Gould.

Batting fourth in the lineup, Couch had a home run, a double and four RBI in one game, and went 4 for 4 in another game with two triples and two doubles. Couch was named to the MAIS all-conference baseball team.

Couch has been selected to play for the United States in the world scholar-athlete games from June 27-July 4 in Hartford, Conn.

Selection to the team is based on three criteria — leadership, academics and athletics. Players have to be certified in all three. Couch attended a leadership conference in Washington, D.C. He’s an honor-roll student and he trains at Frozen Ropes in Portland.

Couch will intern for Sen. Olympia Snowe this summer at her Portland office. Couch would like to play baseball in college.

KYLE HEATH, Westbrook’s freshman catcher, made the defensive play of the game against Cheverus when he dove and caught a pop fly in front of the plate, then threw to second base to catch a runner for a double play. Heath is the brother of Scott. Playing together for the first time since Little League, the Heaths have formed a strong battery.

Staff Writer Tom Chard can be contacted at 791-6419 or at:

[email protected]

Twitter: TomChardPPH