BIDDEFORD — Kennedy Kimball didn’t get to play an inning in the regular season last year.

On Thursday, the Windham softball team saw just what it had been missing.

Kimball, a sophomore, struck out 10 and drove in four runs, leading Windham to a season-opening 12-4 victory over defending state champion Biddeford in a rematch of last year’s Class A South final.

“The fifth time’s the charm. We have lost the last (four) times (against Biddeford), and we were all super excited and pumped for this game,” said Kimball, who went 3 for 4 with a double. “I was super impressed with how everyone came out.”

Kennedy was far from the only offensive standout for the Eagles. Windham scored 12 runs on 17 hits, most of which were against Tigers ace Charlotte Donovan, who struggled with command all afternoon and was hurt by a shaky defense.

“It’s a lot of excitement. We’re definitely riled up right now,” said Windham junior Brooke Gerry, who went 4 for 5 and scored three runs. “As the preseason went on, we saw all of our bats come alive.”


Windham’s first-year coach, Darcey Gardiner, threw a curveball at the Tigers (1-1) by starting Kimball in the circle rather then Gerry, who had a 0.82 ERA and 225 strikeouts last season. Gerry moved over to first base.

“We kind of knew going into this game that we were going to go with Kennedy,” said Gardiner. “Brooke has seen Biddeford a lot, Biddeford has seen Brooke a lot.”

Kimball was ready, and she credited catcher Stella Jarvais’ calming presence for helping her stay even-keeled.

“I was very nervous,” she said. “(But) I knew my team would have my back.”

The Eagles proved it in the top of the fourth, immediately after a two-run homer by Laura Perreault (2 for 4) put Biddeford ahead, 3-2. Addison Leger singled up the middle, and Lydia Marden (3 for 3) doubled to left to tie the game. After a Reilly Russell bunt, Chloe Edwards (2 for 4) reached on a bunt single to put runners at the corners.

Gerry then hit a fly ball to center that fell for a single, scoring Marden, and Addie Caiazzo blooped another hit that brought in Edwards. Another bunt single from Jarvais (2 for 4) loaded the bases, and Kimball hit a shallow fly ball that fell in center for a hit that drove in Gerry and Caiazzo to make it 7-3.


Hannah Heanssler (two RBI) drove in Jarvais with a groundout, and Windham scored two more runs in both the sixth and seventh innings.

“I thought we wavered a little bit in the second and the third inning,” Gardiner said. “When we came back out in that (fourth) inning, though, that is when I saw them all flip a switch. They started to believe more.”

Biddeford Coach Mike Fecteau said he thought his team, which fell behind 2-0 in the top of the first, was back on track after the Perreault home run, but seeing-eye singles and rusty defense doomed the Tigers.

“We gave them too many plays,” he said. “That’s inexperience out there in the field. They probably should have gotten one or two that inning. … We’ve got some holes to fill, we’ve got some young girls, and Windham’s a very good team.”

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