STANDISH – Western Maine Class A baseball was unpredictable right to the end.

Seventh-seeded Biddeford completed its remarkable run through the regional playoffs Tuesday night, scoring two runs in the top of the eighth inning and relying on the pitching of left-hander Trevor Fleurent to beat fourth-ranked Westbrook 4-2 in the final at St. Joseph’s College.

Fleurent had Westbrook off balance all night, throwing his fastball and curveball with equal confidence.

“We got outpitched, outhit and outdefensed,” said Westbrook Coach Mike Rutherford. “I knew Fleurent was a heck of a pitcher. He’s the toughest competitor we’ve faced all season.”

Biddeford (12-7) will play Oxford Hills (17-2) for the state championship here at noon Saturday. The Vikings beat Brewer 10-3 in the Eastern Maine final.

“These kids refuse to lose,” said Biddeford Coach Casey Roy. “We’ve been in must-win situations since our last regular-season game. We had to beat Bonny Eagle to get into the playoffs.”

The Tigers beat second-seeded Scarborough in 11 innings in the quarterfinals, then downed sixth-ranked Windham in the semifinals.

With the score 2-2 after the regulation seven innings, the Tigers capitalized on defensove lapses by Westbrook (13-6) to keep their season alive.

With one out in the eighth, Tyler Audie was hit by a pitch, the third hit batter of the game by Westbrook left-hander Scott Heath. Tyler Parker then hit a fly to center field that was lost in the lights. Audie ended up on third and Parker on second. Audie scored on a passed ball to make it 3-2 and moments later, Chris Jones doubled to make it 4-2.

In the bottom of the eighth, Joe Quinlan led off with a base hit for the Blazes but couldn’t advance.

Fleurent got the heart of the Blue Blazes’ lineup on a fly to right, which Travis Vigneault made a good recovery to catch, a strikeout and a tapper back to the mound.

The Tigers erupted into celebration after the final out and for good reason. It was a challenging climb to the top of Western Maine.

“I just wanted to keep them off balance and let my defense make the plays,” said Fleurent.

Fleurent has a herky-jerky motion that can cause hitters’ timing to be off. Combine that with top stuff and it’s not surprising the Blazes had problems at the plate.

Fleurent had the Blazes swinging at a curve that broke into the dirt at times. More often than not, he dropped his curve in the strike zone.

“He has the best curveball in the league,” said Rutherford. “We sacrificed four times and I never do that. I knew how tough Fleurent could be.”

The Tigers took a 1-0 lead in the first after Fleurent led off with a single. He was sacrificed to second, then scored on Audie’s hard shot at the first baseman that went for a hit.

The Blazes tied it in the bottom half. Zach Collett singled home Quinlan, who led off with a single.

The teams traded runs again in the third.

Westbrook was out of sync on defense the entire game. The Blazes fumbled plays they usually make.

“Despite how bad we played on defense, we were still in the game,” said Rutherford. “You hate to see a game lost on a ball in the lights, but that’s baseball.

“The bottom line is that Biddeford outplayed us.”

 

Staff Writer Tom Chard can be contacted at 791-6419 or at: [email protected]