STANDISH — The Bucksport softball team couldn’t get the hits it needed to defend its Class C state title on Saturday at St. Joseph’s College. In a game that lasted just an hour and 20 minutes, Bucksport lost to Madison 3-1 in the championship.The Bucksport Golden Bucks (18-2) have won three of the last five state finals. This time, their coach Mike Carrier said his team’s hitting just “wasn’t up to par.”“Their pitcher did a really good job working in and out,” Carrier said of Madison junior Madeline Wood. “She kept us off balance.”The undefeated Madison Bulldogs (19-0) scored the first run of the game in the bottom of the third. Aishah Malloy slammed a triple deep into centerfield before reaching home on a Kayla Bess groundout.This is placeholder textThis is placeholder textBucksport answered back in the next inning. Eliza Hosford led off with a line drive, which Madison’s third baseman Whitney Bess dropped, allowing Hosford to reach first. Darrian Jellison then bunted to put runners on first and second with no outs. Both Hosford and Jellison advanced on steals during Julia Zavalza’s at-bat before she struck out. Tyler DuPont followed with a line drive to third base. This time, Whitney Bess caught the ball for Madison’s second out.With two runners in scoring position, sophomore pitcher Katelin Saunders made sure the Golden Bucks didn’t leave empty-handed. She singled with a ground ball down the right field line to score Hosford and tie the score 1-1. Wood then notched another strikeout to enter the bottom of the fourth, leaving two Bucksport runners on base.“She did nothing differently,” Carrier said of Wood’s pitching that inning. “We just started hitting the ball.”However, Bucksport’s offensive momentum would stop there.Madison scored again in the bottom of the sixth. After Wood walked, she scored on an Aly Leblanc triple to deep right field. Leblanc then reached home on an Erin Whalen sacrifice fly to pull the Bulldogs up 3-1.The Golden Bucks didn’t threaten to extend the game in the top of the final inning. A pop-up and two groundouts sealed the title for Madison.Wood allowed just four hits and struck out seven for Madison. Saunders scattered six hits and struck out five for Bucksport.Bucksport has four graduating seniors: Kaylee Grindle, DuPont, Hosford and Zavalza.However, Carrier is optimistic about the team’s future.“We have a really good group of sophomores and a couple really good freshmen,” Carrier said. “We’re going to miss our seniors terribly — they’re the core or any team. But we’ve got some good players coming up.”For a coach who has won 19 regional championships, there is always next year. Latest posts by Taylor Vortherms (see all) Latest Posts Taylor VorthermsSports Editor at The Ellsworth AmericanTaylor Vortherms covers sports in Hancock County. The St. Louis, Missouri native recently graduated from the Missouri School of Journalism and joined The Ellsworth American in 2013. Bio EHS names new boys’ soccer coach – July 13, 2016 Part 1: Invisible, incapacitating concussions are sidelining high school athletes – July 19, 2016 Part 2: When the injury is inside your head, some “don’t get it” – July 26, 2016
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