Oxford Hills’ Eli Soehren pitches against Edward Little at Central Maine Community College in Auburn on May 17. Soehren, the 2023 Sun Journal All-Region Baseball Player of the Year, was named KVAC Class A Player of the Year and picked as a finalist for the Winkin Award this spring. Andree Kehn/Sun Journal

Eli Soehren’s athletic accolades are like a long list of credits that role at the end of a blockbuster movie. 

He has been receiving awards his entire high school career — and he has just picked up another one before heading off to Colby College in the fall: the 2023 Sun Journal All-Region Baseball Player of the Year. 

“I mean it feels great,” Soehren said. “I got it in football (in 2021). Whenever I get these awards, like I don’t really expect it at all. It’s like I just play baseball and whatever comes, comes. It’s tough that we didn’t get to the state championship this year but it’s great. It is an awesome award.”

Soehren also was named the KVAC Class A Player of the Year and was chosen as a finalist for the Mr. Maine Baseball award, which is known as the Dr. John Winkin Award.

The second-seeded Vikings again ran into a hot pitcher early in the postseason. Matt Holmes struck out 12 batters as seventh-seeded Bangor defeated Oxford Hills 8-1 in the Class A quarterfinals.

“Those three years, the pitchers we faced in the first round have been unbelievable, and we struck out I don’t know how many times against them,” Soehren said. 


Soehren took the loss in that game, but he still had an outstanding season. He batted .400 and had 18 hits, which included three doubles, three triples and one home run. He drove in 17 runs and scored 17. He stole nine bases. He walked 16 times and only struck out once in the entire season. He also prospered on the mound, going 4-2 with an ERA of 2.47.

Oxford Hills coach Shane Slice said Soehren excelled on the mound due to his arm strength and size. 

“Boy, he is a great hitter,” Oxford Hills coach Shane Slicer said. “But his potential — he could really go places with his arm on the mound. So when it all comes to together — so if he decides to pitch at Colby — he has got the potential to throw in the 90s. He has that type of arm. 

“But hitting in baseball, he struck out once this year. It was a strikeout looking. I would guess it was 50-50 umpire and him. That is a pretty impressive season. He doesn’t strike out, he walks. He hits for power.”

Slicer said Soehren’s pitching was important to the Vikings.  

“He didn’t have a good a season this year on the mound as he probably could have,” Slicer said. “He was inconsistent a little bit. But just having him made us better on the mound for sure.”


Slicer describes Soehren as a different type of leader. 

“He reminds me of the Little League kids,” Slicer said. “He is just joyous, like he is just excited to be there, just having fun — smiling, ice cream after the game. He doesn’t let other people get too wound up or tries not to because that is not his style. 

“It just reminds you of when we grew up and when we were 10. I mean he’s competitive — there’s no question. But I think his leadership style is different. It is not hardnosed. It’s calm and he is just having fun. He doesn’t put too much pressure on himself. He doesn’t put pressure on other people. That’s his leadership style — he kind of calms them down.”

Soehren’s football career was among the decorated in the states history. Along with quarterbacking Oxford Hills to its first gridiron state championship in 2022, he also was named the Fitzpatrick Trophy winner earlier this year, and during his career was twice chosen as Class A Player of the Year and received Maine player of the year awards from MaxPreps and Gatorade.

So his certain future is on the football field at Colby this fall. He is not yet sure if he will try to play for the Mules’ baseball team. 

“I was thinking about it, maybe try out, like walk on or something,” he said. “But I will play football. I will play QB. We will see how I feel (about baseball).” 

Soehren, who finished in the top 5% in his graduating class at Oxford Hills Comprehensive High School, hasn’t decided on a major. 

“I have no clue, yet,” he said. “I am very undecided … and just trying to figure it out.” 

But Soehren has always been an athlete who can think on his feet, and it is a safe bet that he will figure out his promising future, too.

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