AUGUSTA – Saco & Biddeford Savings of Westbrook pushed across the winning run in the ninth inning for the second consecutive game Thursday to remain unbeaten in the American Legion baseball state tournament.
Robbie Hamilton hustled home from second base on Keenen Lowe’s third hit of the game to propel Westbrook to a 9-8 victory against Staples Crossing of South Berwick to remain in the winners’ bracket of the double-elimination tournaments.
Westbrook is scheduled to play Bangor, the tournament’s other unbeaten team, at 3:30 p.m. Friday at Morton Field.
The victory came one day after Westbrook rallied for three runs in the bottom of the ninth to pull out an 8-7 win over Windham.
“We didn’t panic and we used all our outs,” Westbrook Coach Greg Souza said.
The teams didn’t play each other in the regular season this summer but were embroiled in three tight games in the high school season. Westbrook beat Marshwood in the SMAA championship game and Western Class A final after the Hawks beat the Blazes in the regular season.
“Those games were all battles just like this,” said Souza. “They’ve got great players on that team. They’re really well-coached. We knew they weren’t going to sit down. We just keep playing ping-pong.”
In Thursday’s game, the score was tied or the lead changed hands eight times.
“It’s a game that I can really say didn’t come down to much of anything other than timely hitting,” Staples Crossing Coach Shawn Gillies said. “Everybody hit. They went ahead. We went ahead. They came back. We just fell a run short.”
Sam Stauble drove in four runs for Westbrook. He hit a run-producing double in the first, a two-run double in the third and drew a bases-loaded walk in the sixth.
Hamilton hit a two-run homer, his second of the tournament.
Zach Quintal hit a two-run homer in the fifth for Staples Crossing.
Tyler Pratt also drove in a run with his second single of the game in the eighth for Staples Crossing.
BANGOR 9, PAST TIME CLUB 5: Sam Huston drove in three runs to help keep Bangor in the winners’ bracket.
Huston contributed a two-run double when Bangor took a 5-2 lead in the first. He also hit a run-producing single in a three-run fourth.
Mike Wong singled three times for Past Time of Lewiston.
WINDHAM 8, BREWER 2: Shawn Francoeur drove in three runs as Windham remained alive.
Francoeur helped stake Windham to a 5-0 lead by drawing a bases-loaded walk in the first inning and smacking a two-run homer in the third.
Ethan Petty drove in runs with a single in the fourth and a sacrifice fly in the sixth for Windham. Logan Rogerson hit a triple and a single for Brewer, which finished 16-10.
RED BARN 11, FAYETTE-STAPLES 10: Red Barn of Augusta rallied for five runs in the bottom of the ninth to eliminate the Saco team.
Zach Lachance drove in the deciding run with a double, his third hit of the game. Earlier, Sean Cabaniss drove in a run with his third single of the game to make it 10-10.
Cam Jackman drove in three runs with a single, double and a home run as Fayette-Staples finished with a 12-10 record.
Paul Betit can be contacted at 791-6424 or at: