Sophia Morin of Brunswick, right, hi-fives teammate Blake Austin after Morin hit a three-run home run in the first inning of a Class A North quarterfinal game against Lewiston in Brunswick. Eli Canfield/The Times Record

Brunswick softball coach Hugh Dwyer has seen a lot over the years.

There was a winless campaign more than a decade ago, followed by a few seasons in which the Dragons crept above .500.

This year, the program took a big step forward by reaching the Class A North semifinals.

“The team goals that we established at the beginning of the season were met and exceeded in some cases,” said Dwyer, whose team won 13 games this season.

Dwyer added that Brunswick had not won 10-plus games since 2005. 

“That achievement is meaningful especially when I have heard from so many players from past years who have expressed their pride in our accomplishment,” he said. “Our commitment level to improve showed, and we hope to continue this upward trend.”

Brunswick cruised past No. 13 Cony in the opening round of the A North tournament, before squeezing past No. 5 Lewiston in the quarterfinals. 

The Dragons had just three seniors this season, which sets them up nicely in 2022.

Elsewhere on the Midcoast this season, Morse enjoyed a strong season as well. But the Shipbuilders played for something far more meaningful than wins and losses, as they rallied around Maddie Potter, who was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma, a cancer that infects infection-fighting cells in the immune system. 

“The support we had was unimaginable, that’s what really stands out to me,” said head coach Wilfred Laffley. “The support shown from opposing programs from across the state showed that softball is a family.”

On the field, Laffley wasn’t sure what to expect coming into the season. Still, the team showed marked improvement.  

“It went well,” he said. “It was a different and unique schedule but we made the best of it.”

As for the open tournament, Laffley added he preferred the traditional format.

The Richmond Bobcats are all smiles as they walk of the field at the end of an early inning against Buckfield during a Class D South playoff game earlier this season in Richmond. Joe Phelan/Kennebec Journal

“Having the open postseason while going through COVID was good because of the chances of game cancellations and no opportunity to make up games,” he said. “The teams that you were scheduled to play were very different from past seasons, which was a challenge.”

Morse earned the No. 3 seed in Class B South. It eliminated No. 14 Wells before No. 6 Medomak Valley ended its season with a stunning five-run seventh inning in an 8-7 win in the regional quarterfinals.

It was an up and down year for Mt. Ararat, which was without head coach Terri Tlumac for 10 days during an important stretch of the season due to COVID-19 safety protocols.

Despite finishing No. 12 in Class A North, the Eagles were able to upset rival Brunswick in the regular season, 4-3. 

“This was big for us, it’s always great to beat your biggest rival,” said Mt. Ararat pitcher Megan Reed after the Mt. Ararat victory on May 19 in Topsham. 

Richmond’s Nicole Tribbet pitches against Vinalhaven this season in Richmond. Joe Phelan/Kennebec Journal

The Dragons beat the Eagles 15-1 and 15-2 in their other two meetings. 

Richmond finished 8-4, good enough to earn the No. 4 seed in Class D South. It was eliminated by No. 5 Buckfield in the regional quarterfinals 6-5 on a steamy June 9 afternoon in Richmond.

Despite having just 12 players in the program, head coach Tony Martin said the season was a success.

“This group had a great season amid what they were dealing with, we have nothing to hang our hats on,” he said. 

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