Maranacook players yell while trying to spark a rally against Mount View during a May 24 baseball game in Thorndike. Rich Abrahamson/Morning Sentinel

It was a year of growing for high school baseball teams on diamonds throughout central Maine this spring.

There were no local teams playing for state titles this season. However, given the relative youth of teams throughout the area, central Maine baseball teams made significant steps forward that will give the region some major contenders in 2023.

Two central Maine teams, Maranacook and Mount View, made regional title game appearances this season. Both teams did so as the No. 6 seeds in Class C South and Class C North, respectively, pulling multiple upsets along the way to earn their regional final berths.

Mount View did so despite getting out to a 2-4 start. After that, the Mustangs moved some pieces around in the batting order and in the infield and won 14 of their final 16 games, coming up just short to eventual state champion Bucksport in the regional final.

“Things really weren’t going well for us to start out the year,” said Mount View head coach Brandon Hurd. “Our schedule was a huge challenge this year, and we had a tough time with it starting out. Those adjustments we made throughout the season really helped us turn it around.”

Mount View had one of central Maine’s best players this season in Noah Hurd, who hit .547 and also excelled on the mound with 77 strikeouts, nine walks and a 2.02 ERA. Hurd, a sophomore, will be back for the Mustangs next season, as will Dakota Harriman, Calvin Jewett and Levi Winslow, all key pieces in the lineup.


“We’re losing several seniors, but a lot of the guys who contributed in our lineup were younger guys who will be back next year,” Brandon Hurd said. “We’re also going to have some good freshmen that I think will step in nicely to that varsity role.”

In Class C South, Mt. Abram had one of its best seasons in program history, going 15-3. The Roadrunners won 11 straight games before being knocked off in the regional quarterfinals by Maranacook (14-6), which then pulled another upset in defeating No. 2 Sacopee Valley before falling to Lisbon in the C South title game.

Mount View’s Noah Hurd throws a pitch to a Maranacook hitter during a May 24 game in Thorndike. Rich Abrahamson/Morning Sentinel

Mt. Abram returns a group of key players next year in Payton Mitchell, Trey Pease, Kaden Pillsbury, Tucker Plouffe, Bear Rollins. So, too, does Monmouth Academy (14-5), which must replace .500 hitter Hayden Fletcher but will bring back Manny Calder, Sam Calder, Owen Harding, Matt Marquis, Isaac Oliveira and Kyle Palleschi.

“We have our entire pitching staff back, which is certainly a great thing to have,” said Monmouth head coach Eric Palleschi, whose team lost to Lisbon in the Class C South semis. “There are a lot of teams bringing a lot back next year. Sacopee Valley, Waynflete and Oak Hill, are all young teams with a lot returning. Really, everyone except Lisbon is.”

In Class B, Cony (13-4) and Erskine Academy (14-3) had strong years before falling in the B North and South prelims, respectively. Those teams will be back in the mix next year with the Rams’ Kam Douin and the Eagles’ Grady Hotham, two top junior pitchers this year, back on the mound.

Cony’s Kam Douin pitches during an April 13 scrimmage against Medomak Valley at Morton Field in Augusta. Joe Phelan/Kennebec Journal

Elsewhere in Class B, Lawrence had an outstanding season as it went 14-5 and reached the Northern Maine semifinals. The Bulldogs, whose season ended in walk-off fashion against eventual state champion Ellsworth, will return a host of players, including Cameron Dostie, Michael Hamlin, Gavin Lunt and Ben Ryder.

Local Class D action was somewhat limited this season with only Richmond and Forest Hills competing in a six-team Class D South. One meeting between those two teams saw history made as Richmond head coach Ryan Gardner got his 300th victory in the Bobcats’ May 22 doubleheader sweep of the Tigers.

Messalonskee had an up-and-down season in Class A North, hitting the ball well to begin the year before sputtering a bit offensively as the season progressed. Yet the Eagles (11-8) ultimately made the regional semifinals, and despite losing five seniors to graduation, they, too, should be in the mix with a number of talented underclassmen set to return in 2023.

“You look around you, and you see teams that have a lot of young players that are going to stay competitive,” Hurd said. “That’s what you want to see. It’s great for baseball all around.”

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