BOX SCORE

Fryeburg Academy 8 Greely 2

FA- 110 203 1- 8 9 1
G- 010 000 1- 2 8 7

Top 1st
McIntyre singled, Jones scored.

Top 2nd
Jones singled, Mahan scored.

Bottom 2nd
Wright walked, Bickford scored.

Advertisement

Top 4th
Maillett scored on wild pitch. Emery singled to right, Byrne scored.

Top 6th
Mahan scored on error. McIntyre grounded out, Jones scored. Walker singled to center, Emery scored.

Top 7th
Byrne singled to right, Mahan scored.

Bottom 7th
O. Stewart grounded out, Wright scored.

Multiple hits:
FA- Jones, Walker
G- Rawnsley, O. Stewart

Runs:
FA- Mahan 3, Jones 2, Byrne, Emery, Maillett
G- Bickford, Wright

Advertisement

RBI:
FA- McIntyre 2, Byrne, Emery, Jones, Walker
G- O. Stewart, Wright

Doubles:
FA- Maillett
G- Wright

Left on base:
FA- 8
G- 9

Ontengco and Jones; Rawnsley and H. Stewart.

FA:
Ontengco (W, 1-0) 7 IP 8 H 2 R 1 ER 3 BB 6 K 1WP

G:
Rawnsley (L, 0-1) 7 IP 9 H 8 R 0 ER 1 BB 4 K 5 WP 1 HBP

Advertisement

Time: 1:50

CUMBERLAND—Fryeburg Academy’s softball team is hard enough to beat when it doesn’t get extra outs.

So when host Greely made seven errors in the teams’ season opener on a gorgeous Friday afternoon at Twin Brook Recreation Center, the Raiders feasted.

And the Rangers never recovered.

Fryeburg Academy, a regional finalist last spring, went on top to stay in the first inning, picking up an extra base on an error before standout catcher Camden Jones came home on a single from centerfielder Katy McIntyre.

Jones then made it 2-0 in the top of the second, as her two-out single off Greely sophomore pitcher Lily Rawnsley, brought home rightfielder Maya Mahan.

Advertisement

The Rangers answered in the bottom half, as junior third baseman Maia Wright walked with the bases loaded, but they couldn’t add any more runs.

The Raiders scored two unearned runs in the top of the fourth, as after an error kept the inning alive, a run came home on a wild pitch, then first baseman Brooke Emery added an RBI single.

Fryeburg Academy broke it open in the sixth with three more unearned runs, as Greely committed three errors and and third baseman third baseman Emily Walker capped the uprising with an RBI single.

The Raiders scored one more unearned run in the top of the seventh, as leftfielder Jilyan Byrne had an RBI single and while the Rangers got a run back in the bottom half, on an RBI ground out from senior centerfielder Olivia Stewart, it was far too little, too late and Fryeburg Academy closed out an 8-2 victory.

The Raiders scored all eight of their runs by virtue of Greely miscues and started with a victory, while dropping the Rangers to 0-1.

“We didn’t show what we’re capable of defensively,” lamented Rangers first-year coach Daryl Rawnsley. “It should have been a 3-1, 3-2 game. We had some young kids out in the field. I know we’ll get better.”

Advertisement

Self-inflicted wounds

Fryeburg Academy came agonizingly close to winning a state title last spring, letting a seventh inning lead slip away in a 5-4 regional final loss to eventual champion Cape Elizabeth, finishing 14-4.

This season, the Raiders have a new look as longtime coach Fred Apt has retired and former program standout Mackenzie Buzzell has taken over what is once again a title contender.

Greely finished 7-10 last season, losing to Lincoln Academy in the Class B South preliminary round. The Rangers also have a new coach this spring in Rawnsley, a former assistant with the program under John Eisenhart.

Last year, the Raiders beat host Greely, 7-0.

Friday, under sunny skies, with the first pitch temperature reading 64 degrees and a strong wind blowing from the west, the Rangers looked to beat Fryeburg Academy for the first time since a 7-2 upset victory in the 2018 Class B South quarterfinals, but instead, the Raiders made it three straight in the series.

Advertisement

With a little help.

Fryeburg Academy’s Brooke Emery fouls off a pitch from Greely’s Lily Rawnsley in the first inning of the Raiders’ 8-2 victory in Friday’s season opener. Hoffer photo.

On the game’s second pitch, Jones turned around a Lily Rawnsley pitch and lined it down the third base line for a single. She then moved to second when leftfielder Devin Gifford couldn’t field it cleanly. Jones then took third on a wild pitch, but had to hold when Emery lined out to first baseman Izzy Bickford. McIntyre then came through with a line shot off the glove of Wright to score Jones for a 1-0 lead. After McIntyre was erased on a ground ball off the bat of Walker, a wild pitch allowed Walker to move to second and she went to third on a single from second baseman Shelby Purslow. Rawnsley escaped further damage, however, getting shortstop Emma Rydman to watch strike three.

Greely hoped to answer in the bottom half against Raiders pitcher Abby Ontengco, as Rawnsley led off with an infield single, but Wright bounced into a second-to-shortstop force out, sophomore shortstop Avery Butler chased strike three and after Olivia Stewart kept the inning alive with an infield single wide of third, putting runners at the corners, Stewart stole second, but sophomore catcher Haley Stewart grounded out to Emery at first to end the threat.

Fryeburg Academy tacked on a second run in the top of the second.

Rawnsley got designated player Ana Maillett to pop back to the mound, then hit Mahan with a pitch. Byrne grounded back to the mound, but Rawnsley threw to first instead of second, allowing Maillett to move into scoring position. That loomed large, as Maillett stole third, then Jones produced the run. Jones first hit a long foul ball down the leftfield line, but Gifford dropped it to keep the at-bat alive. Jones then singled sharply to left to deliver the run.

“(Camden’s) very impressive,” Buzzell said. “She’s worked hard and has a great attitude. She’s the kind of kid you love having on the team.”

Advertisement

Emery popped out to second, but the Raiders led, 2-0.

Greely got a run back in the bottom half, but could have had even more.

Rightfielder Amina Suleiman struck out swinging leading off, but Bickford reached when Rydman couldn’t handle her pop up. Second baseman Lucy Axelsen followed with a walk, but Gifford struck out swinging. Rawnsley kept hope alive by beating out an infield single to load the bases, then Wright walked on a 3-2 pitch to score Bickford and reload the bases. Butler was up next, but she watched strike three and the Rangers remained a run behind, 2-1.

Lily Rawnsley enjoyed her lone 1-2-3 inning in the top of the third, getting McIntyre to ground out to short, Walker to line out to center and Purslow to ground out to shortstop.

In the bottom half, Olivia Stewart bounced out to first leading off, but Haley Stewart singled to center and took second when Suleiman grounded out to first. Again, the tying run would be stranded, as Bickford grounded out to short to keep the score 2-1.

“We just didn’t get that big hit,” lamented Daryl Rawnsley.

Advertisement

Fryeburg Academy then got some breathing room in the top of the fourth.

After Lily Rawnsley fanned Rydman, Maillett hit a ground rule double to deep center and after Mahan chased strike three, Byrne reached on an error by Butler at short, putting runners at the corners. With Jones at the plate, Byrne stole second and Rawnsley threw a wild pitch to score Maillett. Jones walked to again put runners at the corners and Emery followed with an RBI single to right on the first pitch to bring home Byrne to make it 4-1. Emery stole second to put two runners in scoring position, but McIntyre ended the frame by bouncing out to short.

In the bottom half, Axelsen led off with a single to right, but Jones immediately picked her off with a quick throw to Emery. Jenna Carignan replaced Gifford and after getting ahead in the count, 3-0, struck out. Rawnsley grounded out to first on the first pitch to retire the side.

Walker led off the top of the fifth with a bloop single to center, but she was erased on a force out, when Purslow grounded out third-to-short. Rydman followed with a ground ball back to the mound, which resulted in a force out at second, then Maillett grounded out short-to-second to end the frame.

In the bottom half, Wright lined to second and Butler grounded out to second, but Olivia Stewart singled up the middle and Haley Stewart followed with a base on balls, bringing up Suleiman representing the tying run, but she grounded out to second to end the threat.

The Raiders then ended any lingering doubt in the top of the sixth, capitalizing on three Greely errors.

Advertisement

Mahan got the uprising started when she reached on a ground ball to third that Wright fielded, but threw away, allowing Mahan to take second. After moving up on a wild pitch, Mahan had to stay at third when Byrne popped out to second. Jones then popped up to short, but Butler couldn’t catch the ball and Jones reached first as Mahan came home to score. Jones stole second and went to third on a wild pitch, then stayed put when Emery reached on a dropped pop up. Emery stole second and McIntyre grounded out short-to-first with Jones scoring and Emery moving to third. Walker then ripped a single to center to make it 7-1. Purslow flew out to left, but the damage was done.

In the bottom half, Ontengco struck out Bickford, Axelsen grounded out to the mound and after Carignan singled, Rawnsley flew out to center for the third out.

Fryeburg Academy tacked on one more run in the top of the seventh.

Rydman chased strike three leading off and Maillett grounded out to short, but Mahan got to second when her fly ball to left resulted in an error and Byrne followed with a single to right to score the run. Byrne stole second, but Jones lined out hard to third for the final out.

The Rangers didn’t go without a fight in the bottom half.

Wright led off with a blooper that deflected off Purslow’s glove for a double. Butler lined out to first, but a wild pitch moved Wright to third and when Olivia Stewart grounded back to the mound, Wright came home with the run. Ontengco then slammed the door, getting Haley Stewart to ground back to the mound and after 110 minutes, the Raiders were able to celebrate their 8-2 victory.

Advertisement

“I’m very pleased,” Buzzell said. “We had a few rained-out scrimmages, so I’m pleased with how put things together. One of our key things this season is taking advantage of opportunities when they present themselves.”

Fryeburg Academy’s offense was paced by two hits apiece from Jones and Walker. Mahan scored three runs, Jones touched home twice and Byrne, Emery and Maillett had one run apiece. McIntyre had a pair of runs batted in, while Byrne, Emery, Jones and Walker had one RBI apiece. Maillett had the Raiders lone extra base hit, a double. Byrne stole three bases, Emery had two and Jones one. Fryeburg Academy stranded eight base runners.

Ontengco opened the season with a win, allowing one earned run on eight hits. She walked three, struck out six and threw a wild pitch.

“(Abby) did well,” Buzzell said. “She got out of a couple struggles and worked hard.”

For Greely, Rawnsley and Olivia Stewart each had multiple hits and Bickford and Wright scored the runs. Olivia Stewart and Wright each had one RBI. Wright doubled and Olivia Stewart had a stolen base. The Rangers stranded nine.

Rawnsley was the tough-luck loser, giving up eight runs, none earned, on nine hits. She walked one and struck out four.

Advertisement

“Lily threw well,” Daryl Rawnsley said. “She had to throw a lot of drops or changeups. She gave up some hits, but they were usually after errors. If there’s a ball in the air or on the ground, it has to be caught. I liked our effort, we just needed to be more mentally ready.”

Just getting started 

Fryeburg Academy is off until after April vacation, when it faces Gray-New Gloucester. The Raiders appear to once again have the necessary ingredients for a long playoff run.

“I’m excited about this group,” Buzzell said. “I think we have a lot of versatility and a lot of speed and some good bats. ”

Greely is back in action Tuesday at Brunswick, then visits Wells Friday.

“We’ll be ready to go Tuesday,” said Daryl Rawnsley. “We like to say that in May, things will be better.”

Sports Editor Michael Hoffer can be reached at [email protected]. Follow him on Twitter: @foresports.

Comments are not available on this story.