St. Dominic’s Tim Ouellette slides safely into second base before Machias’ Kason Fergerson catches the ball during Saturday’s Class D baseball state championship game in Gorham. Andree Kehn/Sun Journal

Thou Shall Not Steal. It’s one of the Ten Commandments, and the St. Dominic Academy baseball team broke it many times Saturday.

The Saints stole second base six times in their 3-1 victory over the Machias Bulldogs to capture the Class D state championship.

St. Dom’s coach Bob Blackman did some late-night scouting Friday of Machias’ victory over Stearns last Tuesday in the Class D North title game and found a weakness of the Bulldogs’ that he thought the Saints could exploit.

“There was a stream I found of (Machias’ game) up in Bangor on Tuesday,” Blackman said following Saturday’s game. “I picked up in that game their (starting) pitcher did not like to throw to first base and the catcher was a little slow with his pop time and arm strength. I really felt we could run at will.

“At one o’clock this morning, I was watching that game and that was one of two things I picked up. The other one didn’t come to fruition because they didn’t have the opportunity.”

When the St. Dom’s (10-8) players found out that running was going be a strategy in Saturday’s state final, they weren’t too surprised.


“Coach has us stealing every time we get on base,” catcher Ridge Dionne said. “The mindset is to go and book it to the next base. Just get up there and get a good lead, then steal. Coach knows what he’s talking about — he has taught us really well. Just get up there and take it.”

The plan was executed the first time the Saints got on base, in the bottom of the first inning. Leadoff hitter Timothee Ouellette reached base and stole second with No. 2 hitter Miles Frenette at the plate. Ouellette moved to third when Frenette attempted a sacrifice bunt, but Machais’ third basemen first looked to make a play at third, but Ouellette was already almost there, and by the time the third baseman looked toward first base it was too late to even attempt to force out Frenette.

Frenette then stole second with Ashton Hammond at-bat.

“I knew we needed to run early, and stealing would help us,” Frenette said. “It caught (Machias) off guard — I think a lot of teams we caught them off-guard this year and they didn’t expect much out of us. So they wouldn’t expect us to steal.”

Having runners at second and third set up cleanup hitter Tanner Berry-Hart’s two-run single that scored Ouellette and Frenette and gave the Saints a 2-1 lead, which they never relinquished as they earned the school’s sixth baseball state championship (St. Dom’s won Class C titles in 2005, 2007, 2009, 2011 and 2015).

Following his single, Berry-Hart stole second base, but Machias starting pitcher Kashman Feeney picked off Berry-Hart at second to end the first inning.


Frenette stole second base again in the bottom of the third. The Saints loaded the bases in the third, and Frenette believes part of the reason was their aggressiveness and success on the bases.

St. Dominic’s Miles Frenette slides into second base, beating the throw to Machias’ Ethan Libby during Saturday’s Class D baseball state championship game in Gorham. Machias’ Kason Fergerson watches the play from the left. Andree Kehn/Sun Journal

“It kind of draws the pitcher’s attention to the base runner, instead of throwing strikes,” Frenette said. “He started to throw wild and he started to hit batters. Having guys on bases rattled him.”

The Saints didn’t capitalize in that inning, but they loaded the bases again in the bottom of the fourth and added to their lead.

Dionne had St. Dom’s fifth stolen base after starting the fourth with a bunt single. Curtis Wheeler also stole second in the inning.

Dionne said that he picked up on what Blackman saw on the video of Machias (16-3).

“You really pick things up; coach really taught us well,” Dionne said. “We figured everything about (the pitcher), and we could tell — he wasn’t going to pick off really well. That first move, you got to go. You could go early and hard, the catcher … a good catcher, but we were able to take some bags on him.”

Dionne was eventually thrown out at home when Ouellette hit into a fielder’s choice, but Wheeler scored later in the frame when Frenette walked with the bases loaded, giving the Saints a 3-1 lead.

Blackman is glad he watched the Class D North final instead of tossing and turning in bed Friday night.

“That was good, I am glad; I wasn’t going to sleep last night, anyway,” Blackman said. “One of my (players’) parents tracked that stream down and sent it over to me. From 11-to-1, I watched that game.”

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