SACO — Thornton Academy put a shiny exclamation point on a great week of softball with Saturday’s 5-0 win over Biddeford.
The Golden Trojans won five games in six days, outscoring their opponents 47-3. Thornton (10-3) climbed from ninth to second place in the Western Class A Heal points in less than 24 hours by virtue of back-to-back wins over No. 3 Cheverus (10-3) and No. 5 Biddeford (9-3).
“We’ve been doing very well all week,” said Thornton shortstop Brooke Cross, who got the offense going with two leadoff doubles. “We’re just hitting the gaps, cheering each other on and staying up the whole time.”
Thornton’s eighth straight win snapped a six-game winning streak for Biddeford.
“They played very well and we played OK,” Biddeford Coach Leon Paquin said. “We just can’t wait to play them again.”
The teams will finish the regular season with a rematch at Biddeford on June 2.
Cross led a nine-hit attack against Biddeford junior Abbie Paquette.
In the second inning, Cross scored on a hit-and-run grounder by Maizie Lee that found the vacated shortstop gap. Cross’ doubled again to start the fourth inning and scored on a ground-rule double to left by Kaylee Burns.
Erin Brayden doubled home Taylor Lux (walk) in the sixth, with Brayden eventually scoring on Biddeford’s only error. Thornton added one more run later in the inning when Lux reached out to hack a high fastball to right, driving home Aleisha Cross (2 for 3).
“One game it’s our one to three hitters who have carried us, another time it was four through six,” said Thornton Coach John Provost. “Today we got production from the bottom of the order, and against Cheverus we had 10 girls get hits.”
Junior pitcher Bailey Tremblay is also doing her part, throwing her third shutout of the week on a two-hitter with one walk and six strikeouts. Paquette was the only Biddeford hitter to have success, lacing two doubles, including one in the first inning that put runners at second and third with one out. Tremblay induced a first-pitch popup from clean-up hitter Alex Quigley and a groundout by Jocelyn Moody.
“We score in that first inning and get the lead, then it’s a whole different game,” Paquin said.
Perhaps, but the Tigers still would have had to find a way to deal with Tremblay’s deceptive and effective change-up.
“When Bailey’s change-up is on, she has the ability to keep batters off balance, even when they put it in play,” Provost said. “And our defense has been playing tremendous.”
Thornton made one error, when a Paquette grounder skipped off Burns’ glove. First baseman Brayden helped that inning with a diving catch on a foul popup. In the fifth, Burns handled three straight chances, charging a slow roller and firing to Brayden, knocking down a line drive and staying with it, and then making a juggling catch on a second liner.
Steve Craig can be reached at 791-6413 or at: