AUGUSTA — A tender arm kept Yankee Ford starting pitcher Marshall Peterson off the mound for a couple of weeks before the American Legion baseball state tournament.

Peterson returned for the South Portland-based team’s tournament opener and stymied Skowhegan for nearly six innings Wednesday in an 11-3 victory at McGuire Field.

Skowhegan (16-11), the Zone 1 runner-up, will face Fayette-Staples of Saco in an elimination game at 2:30 p.m. Thursday at McGuire Field. Yankee Ford (20-1) will face Rogers Post of Auburn at 4 p.m. at Morton Field.

Ryan Emery had two hits, including a double and a run, for Skowhegan, which also got two hits from Brendan Curran. Nate Ingalls went 3 for 5 with four RBI for Yankee Ford.

Peterson tossed 52/3 hitless innings and led 6-1 before Cody Laweryson drove a clean single inside the third-base line. Peterson allowed two runs, one earned, on four hits, two walks and a hit batter, striking out four in 62/3 innings.

“I haven’t been throwing for two weeks so I was getting my arm loose again,” Peterson said. “I was feeling good. It felt like my arm was back to normal.”

“We came out a little flat,” Skowhegan Coach Roger Stinson said. “I thought we were going to pick up where we left off last weekend at the zone tournament but we just didn’t do it.”

By contrast, the top of Yankee Ford’s lineup – Sam Troiano, Ingalls, Ben Conti and Drew Abramson – combined to go 8 for 15 with four walks, five runs and eight driven in against three Skowhegan pitchers, including starter Isaiah Vigue.

“We thought they were going to throw (the University of Maine-bound Laweryson), so we were looking forward to facing him,” South Portland co-coach Andrew Wood said. “Troiano leads the game off with a triple and with his speed, he can definitely make some stuff happen. And Ingalls behind him is batting over .450 for us this year. Having those two guys who are both leadoff batters (Troiano for South Portland High, Ingalls for Cape Elizabeth) sets the table, and then we’ve got the big bats behind them.”

Ingalls’ groundout scored Troiano. Conti then singled and took an extra base when the left fielder bobbled the ball. Abramson followed with another single to left to make it 2-0.

Yankee Ford committed four errors in the first two innings but Peterson, who had one of the errors with a wild pickoff throw to first, limited the damage to one run on Dustin Crawford’s squeeze that scored Will Stinson.

“We weren’t able to put a lot of runners on to play the small-ball and the ball we like to play,” Stinson said. “(Peterson) was throwing the low, outside pitch and we’ve got some guys that try to pull when they should just go with the pitch. That had our number for a little bit.”

Stinson said Laweryson will start Thursday’s game in hopes of extending Skowhegan’s season.

COFFEE NEWS 3, COASTAL LANDSCAPE 2: Peter Kemble pitched a four-hitter and scored the go-ahead run on a double by Andrew Hillier in the eighth inning as Coffee News of Bangor rallied past Coastal Landscape of Portland at Augusta.

PASTIME 9, WELLS 5: Kyle Bourget pitched a complete game and Pastime of Lewiston broke a 4-4 tie with a two-run sixth inning to beat Wells at Augusta.

ROGERS POST 7, FAYETTE-STAPLES 6: Rogers Post of Auburn scored three unearned runs in the fifth inning to erase a 5-4 deficit and held off Fayette-Staples of Saco at Augusta.