WISCASSET — With only four baseball games played so far this season, while most teams have played nine or 10, Telstar has a busy schedule ahead, including six games this week.
The Rebels were looking to start the busy week with a win with a trip to Wiscasset for a game against their Mountain Valley Conference foe. The visitors scored four runs in the third inning to build a 6-0 lead and cruised to a 12-1 victory Monday afternoon.
“I told the team that their season starts now,” Telstar coach John Eliot said. “We’ve had a numbers issue with getting nine players (for various reasons) so we’re starting to make these games up.”
After scoring only nine runs in their first four games, the 12-run output was a pleasant sight for the Rebels. But it was their starting pitcher on the mound who shined brightest.
Zach Hill pitched six innings, scattering three hits, while striking out nine Wiscasset hitters. The senior walked none and hit batters.
“Zach dialed it up today,” Eliot said. “We’ve been working on his control, and he was spot on today.”
Telstar got on the board first when leadoff batter Tristen Lilly reached on an error, stole second and moved to third on a bad throw. Following a strikeout, Hill grounded out to first base to score Lilly.
Leading off the second, Telstar hitter Devin Cole-Mason lined a shot back to the mound, where Wiscasset starter Josh Dualan somehow snagged the screaming ball.
“That suprsied me,” Dualan said. “I’ve never had a ball come back at me like that.”
After taking a few moments to slow his heartbeat down, Dualan walked the next two hitters. A pair of stolen bases moved the runners up, and a wild pitch allowed Joe Dillon to score Telstar’s second run of the game. Dualan worked in a pair of strikeouts to end the frame with Telstar leading 2-0.
In the third, after Hill walked, Jarrett Bean got Telstar’s first hit of the game, knocking an RBI single to right to score Hill. Cole-Mason followed with an infield hit that gave the Rebels (2-3) a pair of runners on base. Taking advantage of defensive miscues, Telstar scored another run before Cole-Mason was caught trying to steal third base. But Joe Dillon, Joe Sicotte and Asa Milot each singled off Dualan to score two more runs, giving Telstar a 6-0 lead.
“We haven’t been really hitting the ball well so it was good to see some run support today,” Hill said.
Meanwhile, Hill sailed on the mound. The righty gave up a leadoff single to Dualan in the third, but that was erased when he was thrown out at third base trying to tag up on a fly ball to right. Hill, a senior, struck out the No. 9 hitter to end the frame, and he faced the minimum nine hitters through three innings.
After the Rebels went down in order in the top half of the fourth, the Wolverines put together a couple of hits to score in the bottom half. Ronald Drake beat out an infield hit and moved to second when James Hodson was hit by a pitch. After a groundout moved the runners to second and third, Ryan Potter connected for an RBI single, scoring Drake and cutting the lead to 6-1. Hill got the next batter to fly out to center to end the threat.
“Their confidence is building,” Wiscasset coach Gregg Wood said. “Each game, they get a little more. Despite the losses, these kids stay positive. They’re all friends off the field, so it helps. “
Andy Hendrickson replaced Dualan in the fifth inning and promptly walked the first two hitters.
The Rebels attempted a double steal, and when the catcher’s throw went into left field, Bean was able to trot home for a Telstar run. Sicotte rapped his second hit of the game to plate another run and came around to score on a Blake Rothwell RBI single two batters later, giving Telstar a 9-1 lead.
The Rebels plated three more runs in the sixth and kept Wiscasset off the scoreboard for the 12-1 win in six innings after the mercy rule ended the game.
Telstar finished with nine hits, including three from Sicotte, who had two RBIs. Hill also knocked in two runs. The Rebels stole 10 bases in the win.
Drake, Doulan and Potter each had hits for the Wolverines (0-10).
Telstar faces Winthrop for two games Tuesday before hosting Bridgeway on Wednesday. Wiscasset travels to Bridgeway on Friday at 4 p.m.