FREEPORT – Aidan Sullivan pitched six innings of one-hit ball in his first varsity start, and his teammates backed him with three home runs as Yarmouth downed Freeport 7-0 in a Western Maine Conference baseball game Saturday.

The first two batters Sullivan faced reached base — Jared Knighton walked and Josh Weirich hit a ground single to left, but the Clippers turned a double play, first baseman Nick Whittaker with a nice short-hop dig.

Sullivan, a junior who played first base last year, ended the inning with a strikeout and allowed just two more walks, finishing with five strikeouts.

Admitting to being “a little” nervous, he said, “I thought it was a good team effort. The guys made the plays behind me and we also got some big hits.”

Sullivan had a 2-0 lead before taking the mound. Travis Merrill grounded a one-out single off Spencer Egan, and one out later Whittaker lined a pitch over the fence in right-center.

Egan struck out the side in the second but was hurt by Merrill’s two-out homer in the third, also to right-center.

Freeport (1-3) turned double plays in the next two innings, but Yarmouth (4-0) broke it open with a three-run sixth.

A one-out single by Sullivan, a stolen base by pinch-runner Campbell Belisle-Haley and an RBI single by Dustin McCrossin made it 4-0, and Nick Proscia lined a two-run homer to center for a 6-0 lead.

A Jeff Kuklewicz double, groundout and wild pitch produced Yarmouth’s final run off reliever Kaleb Farmer in the seventh, and Luke Pierce took over for Sullivan in the home half and struck out three batters after giving up a leadoff double to Kyle Donagan-Moore.

Asked if he would have pulled Sullivan with a no-hitter going, Clippers Manager Marc Halsted said, “Yes. We were going by pitch count; 80 was the magic number and he threw 85.

“Aidan did a nice job but we’ve got a bunch of good arms, and it’s good to have options. Luke could be our closer the rest of the way.”

After admitting, “We had an atrocious practice (Friday) but we left it there,” Halsted praised Proscia, who had a sacrifice and a home run while handling his catcher’s duties flawlessly. “He’s an exceptional young man,” said Halsted.

Freeport Coach Hank Ogilvy said, “We’re young but we battled, and it didn’t feel like a 7-0 game.

“They’re a good club. They’ve got some good hitters but I don’t think any of those home runs would have been out in their park (Freeport’s fence is 305 feet to all fields). (Egan) pitched well but we didn’t create much at the plate.”


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