FARMINGTON – The runs came for the Skowhegan baseball team Monday afternoon, just a little later than what head coach Mike LeBlanc would have liked.

The River Hawks scored four runs in the top of the seventh to grind out a 6-1 victory Mt. Blue in a Kennebec Valley Athletic Conference Class A game at Hippach Field.

“They seem to like to (scare me late),” LeBlanc said. “I think they just like to get a rise out of it at times.”

Tyler Annis led the way for Skowhegan (9-2), collecting four hits, including a triple, while scoring three runs. Catcher Brendan Dunlop had two hits, including a triple, and three RBIs.

“We saw the pitcher, timed him up and kind of knew what he was throwing,” said Annis, a senior. “(The hits) just started falling, I guess.”

The River Hawks managed to keep Mt. Blue (6-5) to just two hits, with Hayden Dippner and Brody Walsh each picking up singles.


It was a bounce-back win for the River Hawks, who had an eight-game win streak snapped on Saturday in a 1-0 loss to Brewer.

“It was a good win, (Mt. Blue) is a good team,” LeBlanc said. “We’re fortunate to have a couple of timely hits, and we have good pitching.”

Skowhegan’s Brayden Bellerose throws to a Mt. Blue hitter during a baseball game Monday in Farmington. Rich Abrahamson/Morning Sentinel

Skowhegan took a 1-0 lead in the fourth, when Hunter McEwen plated Annis from second base on an RBI single up the middle. The River Hawks scored their second run in the sixth, when Dunlop brought home Annis from first with a shot that nearly reached the right field fence for an RBI triple.

Mt. Blue responded in the bottom of the inning. Dippner led off with an infield single, then stole second. Zak Koban moved Dippner to third on a sacrifice bunt, before Isaac Wrigley scored Dippner with a sacrifice fly to center field to make it a 2-1 game.

“In these games against top competition, we’ve been struggling at the plate,” Mt. Blue head coach Robb Dippner said. “Guys are pressing. A couple of weeks ago, we went on a stretch of two to three games with double digit hits. We’re super aggressive and try to make what we can make happen. We made a couple baserunning errors that turned into outs that we hoped would turn into runs.”

The River Hawks put the Cougars away in the seventh, when Dunlop cracked a two-run single to score Noah McMahon and Chance Tibbetts. Annis, who reached base on a single, eventually scored from third on a wild pitch, and Dunlop scored on the back-end of a double steal attempt to extend the lead to 6-1.


Brayden Bellerose earned the victory for Skowhegan, allowing a run on two hits, while striking out two in five innings. Jackson Quinn finished the final two innings, not allowing a hit while striking out two for the River Hawks.

“Our pitching has done really well,” Annis said. “They’ve gone deep into games, most (times) six or seven innings.”

Sophomore Noah Leso had a strong performance on the hill for Mt. Blue, allowing four runs in 6 1/3 innings, striking out five batters.

“Hats off to (Skowhegan),” Rob Dippner said. “They’ve been at the top of the standings all season. When you go from Bellerose to Quinn (on the mound), that’s a one-two punch… Noah Leso is pitching his guts out the last two outings. He’s really coming on at the right time. We’ve got five games left, we’ve just got to take it one game at a time and hopefully get a couple wins here.”

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