DIXFIELD — The swings taken Tuesday just might have paid off Wednesday.

The Dirigo softball has had a hard-luck first two weeks of the season, but reversed that fortune with some mighty swings in a 7-4 win over Spruce Mountain.

“We hit in the cage Tuesday and we started hitting them and hitting them,” said shortstop Tasha DeRoche. “That’s when we knew we could do it.”

The Cougars (2-4) rapped out eight hits, including two home runs. DeRoche had a two-run double and a two-run homer.

“The thing I’ve been stressing all year is confidence,” said DeRoche. “We’d get up to bat and we’d be scared. We just needed that confidence.”

Dirigo lost a pair of games by one run and another by two, a 3-1 loss to the Phoenix. Monday, the Cougars were blanked by Monmouth and held to just three hits.

“There’s been so many close losses, I think this is a huge momentum change for us,” Dirigo coach Sara Thurston said. “There’s only so many times you can tell the girls to keep swinging and that your swinging good. Today, I think it finally hit home for them.”

DeRoche finished with three hits while Gabby Scott had a pair. Alyssa Charity drove in three runs with a homer.

“It’s been very frustrating this whole season,” said DeRoche. “Today, we said that we’re going to do it and the second time is the charm.”

Emily Keene led Spruce Mountain with three hits, a homer and three RBI. Ashley Dorey had a pair of hits.

“They had a lot of nice hits today,” said Spruce Mountain coach Robin Roberts. “We just waited too long. We hit the ball in the last inning. You can’t do that against a team like this. You’ve got to hit the ball all the time, and we didn’t do that.”

The Phoenix (3-3) had the early opportunity with a walk and a Dorey single in the first. After Ambyr Wilson got the strike out for the second out, Keene singled to load the bases. Then Wilson struck out another batter for the final out.

“I always tell them that we need to score first and shut them down,” said Roberts.

Instead it was Dirigo getting the first runs and it came in a big way. Natalie Bolduc had walked. After the second out of the inning, DeRoche drilled one to left for the 2-0 lead.

“When I hit that, I was so pumped,” said DeRoche. “I knew it would get the whole team up and that the team would come around.”

Dirigo made it 5-0 in the fourth. DeRoche singled and Mariah Larsen walked. Charity then hit it over the fence in center.

The Phoenix had just three hits through the first four innings and had stranded six runners. Spruce Mountain could capitalize on two walks and a fielder’s choice in the fourth, leaving the bases loaded for a second time.

The Phoenix got two in the fifth when Keene singled in a run and Kathryn Ventrella followed with an RBI triple. She was stranded at third when Wilson got a strike out to end the inning.

“Ambry definitely showed some mental strength,” said Thurston. “That’s so nice to see from a junior, especially in a new role as being our pitcher every game.”

Dirigo answered the Phoenix runs in the fifth when DeRoche doubled in a pair of runs to make it 7-2.  Spruce Mountain added two more in the seventh when Keene homered after a Paula Despres single. Wilson got the next three outs to end the game.

“This is one of the first games where we haven’t had mental errors,” said Thurston. “That’s been the clutch point in the previous games where there would be a ‘what do I do’ mental error.”

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