Carrabec baseball and tennis players Adam Lawrence (20), William Lawrence (13), Luke Carey (10) and Conner Peabody (12) pose for a portrait Thursdayl in North Anson. The four play on the school’s tennis and baseball teams. Michael G. Seamans/Morning Sentinel

NORTH ANSON — Adam Lawrence, a Carrabec High School senior, was ready to play baseball and tennis. If Lawrence was going to have a tennis team to play on, though, he needed to convince a few friends on the baseball team to double up with him.

Lawrence’s younger brother Will, a freshman, was in. As was sophomore Conner Peabody. Those three, combined with tennis players Lucas Vicneire, William Price and Chris LaToraco, gave the Cobras six players. Seven are needed for a full team in Maine high school tennis. That’s where sophomore Luke Carey comes in. Carey joined, and the Carrabec boys tennis team was complete.

“We wanted to have a tennis team, so we had to do it,” Peabody said. “We just kept annoying (Carey) until he said yes.”

Everybody in the state lost the 2020 spring season to the COVID-19 pandemic. These four Carrabec baseball players didn’t want to see their friends on the tennis team lose another opportunity to compete.

Now, Carrabec’s boys tennis team is scheduled to play a Class C South first-round playoff match at Winthrop on Thursday. The baseball team is scheduled to close the regular season at home Tuesday against Mt. Abram.

“It’s no secret our school size,” Adam Lawrence, who plays outfield with the baseball team, said.


According to enrollment figures posted on the Maine Principals’ Association’s basketball bulletin, Carrabec’s enrollment is 191 students. Erik Carey, the school’s baseball and boys basketball coach and Luke’s father, said the current enrollment is around 180. Either way, Carrabec is among the smallest schools in Class C.

Carrebec singles player Luke Carey returns the ball during an April 8 scrimmage against Waterville at the North Street tennis courts in Waterville. Rich Abrahamson/Morning Sentinel Buy this Photo

Coach Carey had no concerns with four of his baseball players also playing tennis.

“If they didn’t play, we don’t have a tennis team,” Coach Carey said. “With the size of our school, we’re going to see more of that.”

Carrabec boys tennis coach Jeff Fowler has coached the sport at the collegiate level at Thomas College, and at Class A and B high schools in central Maine. He, too, was happy to share the athletes.

“We’re extremely grateful the four of them came out. It’s about getting out there and having fun, and developing a love for a lifelong sport,” Fowler said. “Everyone’s done a great job piecing it together.”

Playing both baseball and tennis means the four rarely get to practice either sport. The typical week is usually filled with baseball games and tennis matches. In the regular season, only one tennis match conflicted with a baseball game. Carey and Peabody played baseball that day, their preferred sport.


Carrabec singles player Conner Peabody hits a return shot during an April 8 scrimmage against Waterville at the North Street tennis courts in Waterville. Rich Abrahamson/Morning Sentinel Buy this Photo

The Lawrence brothers often play together as the Cobras’ No. 1 doubles team. A utility player in baseball, Will Lawrence remembers his first match as “stressful,” but appreciates the support he receives from his tennis teammates.

Luke Carey, the last baseball player convinced to join the tennis team, quickly established himself as the Cobras top singles player. Carey, who pitches and plays shortstop on the baseball team, came to tennis having only played it recreationally with family. At No. 1 singles, he has an 8-1 record.

“At first, there was a learning curve. I was a little nervous,” Carey said.

Carey’s game is raw, Fowler said,  but he was a fast learner eager to improve.

“(Carey’s) very smart, patient and athletic. He’s able to keep the ball in play. He’s not too fancy, but he can hit the ball deep,” Fowler said.

Peabody has spent much of the season at No. 2 singles, where he’s played a number of close matches, Fowler said.

“I’m not super athletic. It’s really hard to hit the ball,” Peabody, the baseball team’s catcher, said.

Carrabec’s boys tennis team finished the regular season at 2-8. The bigger point is, with four athletes committing themselves to two teams, they got a season. Erik Carey said there’s talk of other student-athletes picking up tennis next year.

“Some of these guys are finding out they’re pretty good at it,” Coach Carey said.

Related Headlines

Comments are not available on this story.