2016-08-04 / Sports

Mainers look forward to playoffs

By ALEX SPONSELLER
Sports Staff Writer


In this file photo, Sanford Mainers ace Ben Wessel delivers a pitch during the NECBL regular season. 
ALEX SPONSELLER/ Journal Tribune In this file photo, Sanford Mainers ace Ben Wessel delivers a pitch during the NECBL regular season. ALEX SPONSELLER/ Journal Tribune The Sanford Mainers have enjoyed a successful 2016 summer, finishing the regular season with an impressive 26- 17 record and first place in the NECBL northern division.

The Mainers will take on the Upper Valley Nighthawks in a best-of-three series, beginning today at Goodall Park at 6:30 p.m.

“We’ve had a few days off here heading into the playoffs which I think has helped our pitchers rest and get our legs going,” said Sanford manager Chris Morris. “We played really good baseball down the stretch so we hope to keep having fun and playing hard every night.”

Along with first place, the Mainers also locked up homefield advantage in the opening round. Sanford looks forward to competing on its home turf for the first series.

“We love Goodall. We have great fan support, the community really pours in and with the playoffs it will be even more exciting,” said Morris. “We love playing at home and playing at our park so having that homefield advantage is going to be huge for us.” Sanford’s first-place lead slowly built in the final weeks of the season, Morris hopes his team will perform at a high level and continue the upward trend.

“I think they just need to keep pitching, playing defense and having timely hitting. When you look at our last 20 games I think we have really done that. If we continue to do that it will be a very successful postseason for us,” said Morris.

The Mainers haven’t won an NECBL championship since 2008, and hope that 2016 is their year.

“That’s the first thing we talked about, from day one it was about winning a championship for Sanford,” said Morris. “Our fans love us, they do so much for us during the season. We hope to get to that point but everyone understands we have to take it one game at a time, battle through each game and see where it takes us.”

— Sports Staff Writer Alex Sponseller can be reached at sports@journaltribune.com or at 282-1535 ext. 323.

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