The Ashland Hornets baseball team had a solid season in 2016. The squad finished with a 7-7 record despite a very strong schedule, and coach Jordan Beaulier hopes to build on that success.
A first-round playoff loss to Katahdin will be a motivator this year. “Losing in the first round last year left a sour taste in our mouths and we plan on using that as motivation to do big things” explained Beaulier. “We plan on setting the bar quite high for ourselves.”
The Hornets have a balanced slate with players coming from each class. Despite losing three solid starting seniors to graduation in Tim Tarr, Malcolm Milligan and Airin Harmin there are a number of athletes ready to step up. The senior class includes Lucas Craig, the starting shortstop and pitcher and Kyle Beaulier, the starting catcher and pitcher. Both will be key players for Ashland to be successful.
Juniors Alex Kaiser and Baily Clark will both see action as pitchers. Kaiser is a strong hitter and team leader while Clark is new to the team and gets better each time out. Junior Mason Moro will be a strong player in the outfield while Parker O’Clair is a utility player who has a lot of versatility.
The sophomore class will feature brothers Jesse and Daniel Wortman who can both play in the infield and the outfield, and Caleb Lagasse who will see action at first base.
The freshman class includes Tristan Pelletier, a back-up catcher, and Drew Doughty and Graham Berry who have the ability to play a lot of different field positions.
Another key loss is Steven Bellanceau, who suffered a broken leg prior to the season. Bellanceau is helping out as a manager and has been valuable in working with the younger players.
Beaulier is very pleased with how things have gone in the preseason. “We are putting in the work to have a great season,” he explained. “The pitching staff is strong and ready. The bats are moving on plane and we are looking to put up big numbers. We plan to build on each game and drive ourselves deep into the playoffs as possible.”
The Hornets have a quality schedule, and games against Southern Aroostook, Central Aroostook, and Hodgdon will be particularly big contests. Weather and field conditions may stack up the schedule and it will be teams with deep pitching staffs that will benefit.
Beaulier will have the benefit of assistant coaches Danny Cote and Lucas Belanger, while Ariana Stadig will be the team’s manager.
Overall, Beaulier is excited about the prospects for the upcoming season. “We are looking forward to a great season.”