Seven years have passed since Deering last played for the Class A state title in boys’ tennis, but the Rams served notice Friday they are back in the hunt with a 3-2 victory over defending regional champion Scarborough.

Deering senior Noah Finberg delivered the decisive point after rallying from a 2-0 deficit in the third set to win the final six games of the match, 6-1, 5-7, 6-2 over Scarborough senior Jeff Sirocki. Deering classmate Jesse Butler also needed three sets for his first-ever victory over Scarborough’s Alex Henny, 7-6 (7-2), 2-6, 6-0 at No. 1 singles.

At 8-0, the Rams seem assured of the top seed in Class A West. Their remaining four opponents have a combined record of 7-21 and the only other unbeaten SMAA team is Kennebunk, which faces Windham (6-1) and Gorham (8-1) this week.

“That was a big one,” Deering Coach Regina Morton said. “We knew it was going to be close.”

Deering’s other point came from No. 1 doubles, where Jamie Gullbrand and Tom Dean — who switched over to tennis from baseball and track, respectively — continued their unbeaten season with a 6-1, 6-3 victory.

“Both are seniors in the top 20 of their class,” Morton said. “This is the first year of tennis for both of them and they are playing a huge role on our team.”

Morton said Dean runs 3 miles before playing tennis and another 3 afterward.

“Playing tennis is nothing for him,” she said. “He doesn’t even get tired.”

Scarborough’s No. 2 doubles team of Colin Hulst and J.D. Herrman remained unbeaten with a 6-2, 6-1 victory.

FALMOUTH SOPHOMORE Justin Brogan, runner-up in the singles tournament last spring, is 1-1 this season against defending champion Patrick Ordway of Waynflete. Brogan’s only other loss came against Cape Elizabeth junior Matt Gilman on a blustery day in late April.

Brogan and Gilman met again Friday in Falmouth, and this time Brogan won 6-0, 6-0 as the Yachtsmen took a 5-0 victory, although the second and third singles matches each went to three sets.

Brogan was one of 15 seeds to advance in Region 5 singles qualifying Saturday. On the girls’ side, all 17 seeds came through unscathed. The two unseeded boys to qualify for the Round of 48 are Ben Shapiro of Waynflete (an 8-5 winner over No. 11 Ryan Johnson of Windham before beating Tyler Vigue of Biddeford 6-4, 6-3) and Tyler Gaylord of Thornton Academy (6-2, 6-7 (5), 6-4 over No. 17 David Woodbury of Cheverus).

Deering’s Finberg, who had a legitimate case for a seeding, won the first set against No. 6 Satchel McCarthy of Cape Elizabeth before retiring with leg cramps in the third, 4-6, 6-4, 4-0.

“All he wanted to do was get to the Round of 48 once in his high school career,” Morton said. “I think he pretty much proved (Saturday) that he deserved to get seeded.”

KENNEBUNK’S SOFTBALL team suffered its first loss of the season last Wednesday, as red-hot South Portland scored four runs in the bottom of the sixth for the only runs of the game.

While disappointed with the loss, Rams Coach Jim Lang thought his team held their own against one of the premier teams in Western Class A.

“We’re capable of playing now with the top teams,’’ he said. “Sometimes there’s a mindset when you’re not used to being on top, you almost think those other teams are a little better.

“I think we came away with the confidence of knowing we can compete, that we can play these teams.

A couple of plays either way today and we may have been the team that came out on top.’’
Then he added, “Hopefully we can build from it.’’

THE GREELY HIGH baseball team, clear favorites in Western Class B when the season began, is still unbeaten at 8-0 record. The Rangers, though, have had some close games. Their last three have been two-run affairs, with wins over Freeport, York and on Friday, Yarmouth.

The Greely-Yarmouth game saw only six hits total, three by each team.

Mike Leeman of Greely and Chester Jacobs of the Clippers pitched gems. Leeman struck out 11.

The Rangers are sure to be tested several more times  before the Western Maine tournament.

Looming ahead for the Rangers is unbeaten Falmouth (8-0).

– Staff Writers Glenn Jordan, Mike Lowe and Tom Chard contributed to this report.