FARMINGDALE — Two of the three things that can happen when a ball is put in play are good for the hitter.

Mountain Valley’s hitters are starting to understand the advantages of playing those percentages.

The Falcons rapped 10 hits and took advantage of eight Hall-Dale errors, including six in the sixth inning, to pull away late in a 14-2 victory on a blustery Wednesday afternoon.

“It was almost infectious,” Mountain Valley coach Steve LaPointe said. “We got going a little bit early and then we had that big inning.”

Senior Nick Newman and freshmen Fischer Cormier and Dylan Desroches led the offense with a double and a single each. Curtis Gauvin added a pinch-hit solo home run.

The Falcons (4-2) have been frustrated recently by a lack of production with runners on base, including in a 5-0 loss to Carrabec-Madison (Bridgeway) on Tuesday. Wednesday’s game showed them what wonders simply making contact can do.

“We put the ball in play,” LaPointe said. “We’d been striking out quite a bit up until now. We told the kids that when you put the ball in play, good things are going to happen. High school teams, even good high school teams, are going to kick it around sometimes, and we took advantage of the gifts they gave us.”

Cormier led off the game with an opposite field double against Hall-Dale starter Cole Lockhart and ultimately scored from third when Lockhart attempted to pick off John Pepin, who had walked and advanced to second on a ground out.

Falcons reached on Hall-Dale’s first two errors to start the second inning. Cormier knocked Desroches home with a two-out single in almost the same spot he’d doubled the previous inning to make it 2-0.

“(LaPointe) has been telling us to work on more opposite-field hitting,” Cormier said. “It was an outside pitch and I just looked to drive it to the opposite field. It felt good to start it off early.”

Pepin followed with a single to left to drive in Will Bean.

Pitchers Hunter Ames and Ethan Laubauskas combined to limit the Bulldogs to three hits while walking six. The Falcons also played solid defense behind them, making just one error. Ames also had a throwing error of his own.

Ames (4 2/3 innings, one earned run, two hits, six hits, four walks) held the Bulldogs hitless two outs into the fifth before Akira Warren singled to right to drive in Josh Nadeau and cut the Falcons’ lead to 3-1. 

“I had a good idea (about not giving up a hit before then). The mound was pretty soft but I stuck with it and battled,” said Ames, a transfer from Oxford Hills. “My curve ball wasn’t working but I was able to pound fastballs.” 

“Hunter did a really nice job,” LaPointe said. “I’ve seen him better, but he did a really good job battling. Ethan came in and did a really nice job.”

Cole Lockhart followed Warren with a single to put the tying runs on and chase Ames from the game in favor of Laubauskas, who struck out Alec Byron to end the threat. Laubauskas allowed two walks, a hit and Hall-Dale’s other run over the final two innings.

After Newman led off the sixth with a single, Hall-Dale’s defense unraveled with six errors in a row. 

Newman, who was returning from a shoulder injury, added an RBI double for his second hit in the inning and a 9-1 Falcons lead.

Gauvin led off the seventh with a towering home run to left to highlight a five-run seventh which also included a two-run double by Desroches.


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