BASEBALL

South Portland rallies to win opener in L.L. regional

The South Portland American baseball team scored seven runs in the sixth inning to win its first game in the 11-12-year-old Little League Baseball East Regional, beating Essex Junction, the Vermont state champ, 9-7 on Sunday in Bristol, Connecticut.

South Portland advances to the winners’ bracket and will play Connecticut champion Fairfield American at 1 p.m. Monday.

Andrew Heffernan started the sixth inning with a two-run home run to get South Portland within a run, 5-4. Johnny Poole followed with a triple and scored to tie it when Nolan Hobbs reached on an error. Ben Stanley gave South Portland the lead with a sacrifice fly.

Ian Wright tacked on an run with an RBI single and Carson Blake hit a two-run single to give South Portland a 9-5 lead.

Vermont scored twice in the final inning but couldn’t complete the comeback.

TWILIGHT LEAGUE: Alex Curtis hit a two-run single to start a three-run first inning as Edge Academy (13-10) held on to beat Patriot Insurance (13-10) 3-0 in the Twilight League Championship game at Greely Road Field in Cumberland.

Chaz Reade and Bailey Train scored on Curtis’ single. Read and Train each reached base on throwing errors.

Connor Russell picked up the win, pitching six shutout innings and striking out two while allowing just two hits.

Nate Pushard took the loss for Patriot, allowing three runs on two hits while striking out four in six innings.

JUNIOR LEGION: Hayden O’Donnell and Nick Thompson each drove in two runs during a six-run third inning as Thirsty Turf (21-3) beat Auburn Post 20 of Cranston, Rhode Island 8-5 in the consolation round at the Junior Legion Regional Tournament at Mansfield Stadium in Bangor.

O’Donnell, Thompson and Andrew DeGeorge each had two hits to pace Thirsty Turf’s 16-hit attack.

AUTO RACING

OXFORD PLAINS SPEEDWAY: Alan Tardiff of Lyman extended his lead atop the Super Late Model standings by posting his second 50-lap victory of the season.

Tardiff started 11th and worked quickly through the field to take the race away from Scott Robbins of Dixfield. Reid Lanpher of Manchester finished second and Robbins was third.

Other winners Sunday were: Matt Dufault of Turner in the Street Stock feature; Jamie Heath or Waterford in the Bandits race; and Eric Hodgkins of Minot in the Figure 8 race.

Tennis

CITI OPEN: Eighth-ranked Alexander Zverev easily dispatched South African veteran Kevin Anderson 6-4, 6-4 to win the Washington event for his fourth ATP title of the year, matching Rafael Nadal’s victory total.

Only Roger Federer has more titles this season, with five.

Soccer

COMMUNITY SHIELD: Arsenal collected the Community Shield after beating Chelsea 4-1 in a penalty shootout in London that used an experimental format mixing up the order of the spotkicks.

After the traditional curtain-raiser to the English season ended 1-1 after 90 minutes, Olivier Giroud scored the winning penalty.

SWIMMING

U.S. OPEN: Ryan Lochte set a meet record with a time of 1:59.24 in the finals of the men’s 200 meter individual medley at the U.S. Open in East Meadow, New York.

Staff and news services report