BETHEL – The Dirigo baseball team finally broke out of its mini slump Tuesday afternoon, sending a message that the Cougars are still a force in the Mountain Valley Conference.

Dirigo batted around in the last two innings, and Levi Hutchins had four RBIs, including the eventual winning hit, as the Cougars pulled together for a 9-1 win against the Telstar Rebels.

The game was delayed due to a bomb threat at Telstar on Monday.

Dirigo (6-4), fourth in Class C, was locked in a competitive affair as the Rebels held a 1-0 lead until the fifth inning. The Cougars’ John Smith was the difference as the right hander allowed two-hits in six innings to earn the win. The ability to keep the score close and a flawless defense eventually revitalized Dirigo’s dormant offense.

“That was the first earned run we scored in three games,” Dirigo coach Donnie Hebert said “It took Levi Hutchins little poke behind third base to finally get us to break loose, and John Smith came through and pitched a great game.”

Dirigo had been limited to one hit. Derek Daley doubled on the first pitch by Telstar starter Kyle Maines, who threw five innings, but the flood gates opened up in the sixth. Spencer Berry reached on a throwing error, and Dekota Holmquist reached on an infield single. Holmquist stole second, and both runs scored when Hutchins hit a high pitch just fair down the left-field line. Josh Palmer hit an RBI double, and Smith bunted in Josh Jean.

“We needed this,” Berry said. “The team has been struggling, and we’ve lost four games. It may be that we came in to this season and took other teams too lightly because we won (14 games) last year. I think a lot stems around batting practice because if we have a good one then we are better prepared for the game.”

Telstar (6-4) needed to find redemption because it had lost 11-1 to Dirigo 10 days ago, and Maines provided a spark. But the only offense came in the first inning as Max Meader led off with a walk and scored on Ryan Kimball’s bloop double. The Rebels could be ranked seventh because they was credited with an extra win in Heal Points.

Dirigo was still licking its wounds because they were held hitless Saturday at Winthrop. Josh Daley walked and scored the tying run in the fifth. The Cougars feasted on a trio of Rebel relievers in the seventh, and Hutchins smashed a two-run RBI single. Aaron Fenstermacher added a RBI fielders’ choice.

“We moved peopled around today, and every one contributed,” Berry said. “Eric Bolduc played shortstop and did a great job. Josh Jean did his part. Hopefully, things have come together for us.”

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