Mt. Blue shortstop Sidney Belanger (10) tries to put the tag on Bangor’s Rowan Andrews (4) in a softball game in Farmington on Monday.

FARMINGTON — Bangor didn’t get to Mt. Blue pitcher Maddy Smith until the third inning when the Rams went on a brief home-run spree that set the tone for the rest of Monday’s softball game.

Despite taking her lumps, Smith (five strikeouts) went the distance, but the Rams (6-5) put the kibosh on the Cougars (3-4) with strong pitching and timely hitting to collect a 9-2 KVAC victory.

“We managed to play hard throughout the game,” Bangor coach Don Stanhope said. “We had a couple of innings where we just couldn’t get the ball where we wanted it to be. She (winning pitcher Morgan-Carter Moulton) recovered pitching-wise and started hitting outside corners and (put) a good spin ball down.

“So the girls just didn’t hang their heads, just stuck with the game plan, and after the first home run, I got a little nervous when they started swinging for the fence, and they kept to single swings and let the game come to them.”

Before the Rams started knocking the ball over the fence in the third inning, they got their first run in the second inning when shortstop Jenna Smith got on with a hit, stole second and eventually came home when catcher Rae Barron got on with an error.

With a 1-0 lead going into the third inning Bangor found its groove at the plate with a three-hit attack and the help of an error.

Bangor outfielder Cambria Prophete got on with a hit, but she didn’t stay at first base long. Shortstop Gabrielle Gonzales ripped a two-run home run over the fence to score Prophete.

Moulton then parked a solo home run to give the Rams a 4-1 lead. Second baseman Rowan Andrews got with a walk, stole second, moved to third when Smith got on with an error and scored on a passed ball.

Bangor’s pitching staff took it from there and held down a 5-0 lead for the next three innings.

Bangor third baseman Gabby Gonzales (6) is greeted by teammates after she hit a two-run homer in the third inning against Mt. Blue in Farmington on Monday. Sun Journal photo by Tony Blasi

Moulton, the winning pitcher, threw hard for four innings and only gave up one hit. She struck seven batters and helped set down the Mt. Blue side in order in the first and second innings. She was relieved in the fifth inning by senior MaKenzie Thompson, who also helped keep the Cougars off-balance at the plate.

“She’s (Moulton) a junior for us, our No. 1 pitcher for us,” Stanhope said. “She spinning the ball for us pretty well. She is also a very talented catcher as you can see.”

The Rams opened up on the Cougars again in the top of the seventh inning. Prophete doubled and came rushing home when Moulton singled. Then outfielder Madison Drake singled and ended up crossing the plate with Moulton when Lane Barron sent Bangor’s third home run over the fence to create a solid 9-0 lead.

For the day, Bangor hammered out nine hits to Mt. Blue’s six.

The Cougars didn’t go quietly and punched in two runs in the bottom of the seventh inning.

Smith got on with a single, and shortstop Sidney Belanger doubled before Ashley Wiles ripped a two-run double to spoil Bangor’s would-be shutout.

“This is a very short porch (fence),” Mt. Blue coach Ron Smith said. “In general, I thought we played well. The score doesn’t indicate how the game was played.

“We showed some improvements. We didn’t quit. I am happy about some aspects. We are still struggling to find an offense. I thought our pitching and catching worked well together.”