Friday, March 7, 2014
NEWPORT -- Maranacook softball coach Don Beckwith knows his team is better than it looked on Friday afternoon.
Then again, it's hard to look too good when the opposing pitcher is throwing a perfect game.
With Nokomis No. 1 pitcher Sara Packard in Italy, Becky Orcutt stepped in and struck out 13 while allowing Maranacook zero baserunners. The Warriors had the bats going as well, and cruised to a 10-0 victory.
"I knew I was throwing good, but I didn't know it was a perfect game," said Orcutt, a junior at Nokomis. "I had a guess, but you don't really think about it until the end. You just concentrate on the game."
Orcutt threw only 81 pitches, 63 for strikes. There were only a few close calls. In the first inning, Ashley Belanger hit a ground ball that stopped in front of the plate, but catcher Danielle George jumped out to nip Belanger at first. Elise Linton led off the fourth by running the count to 3-and-2 before grounding out to first. In the seventh, Amber Ridlon hit a hard drive to left field -- the only ball Maranacook hit to the outfield -- but Taylor Shaw made the catch.
That was it, unless you count Kaitlyn Chick's line drive in the fifth that hit Beckwith in the coach's box (thankfully in the hand). Orcutt struck out four in a row at one point, then five in a row later in the game.
"It's just going good, and you know you're doing good," Orcutt said. "It's the best feeling ever."
"She spotted really well," Nokomis coach JD McLellan said. "She kept pushing and pushing, and as the game went on, she even pushed harder. We worked in a couple extra pitches."
Nokomis (1-1) had 10 hits and scored in every inning. Orcutt and Ashley Griffith each had doubles to deep left-center in the first two innings. Taylor Lovley was 2 for 2 with two walks, and Orcutt also had two hits. The Warriors stole five bases, and Maranacook committed five errors.
"We just played with a lack of confidence today," Beckwith said. "We shouldn't be playing like that. I think they're a better team, but we didn't play with any confidence, right from the start."
The Black Bears (1-1) had handled Morse easily on opening day, and neither coach thought the game against Nokomis was an indication of how Maranacook's season will go.
"This is a team that will win some games, and that will help us out considerably," McLellan said.
Matt DiFilippo -- 861-9243