July 26, 2013

Saco wins state Little League title

Saco completes a rebound from the losers' bracket and is headed to the Eastern regional in Connecticut.

By Paul Betit pbetit@pressherald.com
Staff Writer

AUGUSTA - Saco capped its march out of the losers' bracket Friday night with a Little League baseball state championship.

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Saco pitcher Luke Chessie celebrates after his team beat Bayside 14-1 to win the Maine State 11/12 Little League championship game on Friday at Linscott Field in Augusta,

Joe Phelan/Kennebec Journal

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The Saco Little League players celebrated their state championship with their fans Friday night, slapping hands down the first-base line after defeating Bayside of Portland 14-1 in four innings in the final game. The teams split two earlier games this week.

Additional Photos Below

WHAT’S NEXT?

• Saco advances to the Little League East regional Aug. 2-11in Bristol, Conn.

Saco rolled to a 14-1 victory against Bayside of Portland to win the double-elimination tournament for 11- and 12-year-old players at Linscott Field.

It was the third Little League title for nine of the 12 players on the team. That group also won state tournaments for under-9 and under-10 baseball players.

"Having all the same kids and (doing) well year after year is really good," said leadoff batter Timmy Smith, who had two hits and scored three runs.

Saco went 5-1 in the week-long tournament, outscoring five opponents, 63-14.

In three victories, including Friday night, games ended before the sixth inning because of the 10-run rule.

"Except for a couple of games during the entire All-Star season, we've hit the ball very well," Saco Manager Todd Duchaine said. "You've got to keep pace with us. If you're not throwing your ace the whole game, it's tough to keep up with us."

Friday night, Saco totaled 15 hits off three pitchers to beat Bayside for the second time in two nights after losing to Bayside earlier in the week and falling into the losers' bracket.

"We certainly made some errors in the field but even with that said, they were hitting the ball well today," Bayside Manager Chris Sawyer said. "When a team like that gets on a roll, it's tough to slow them down. They're a good hitting club."

"Even if we're down in the first inning, we never think we're going to lose because we know we can come back," winning pitcher Luke Chessie said.

Chessie limited Bayside to three hits. He struck out seven and walked five in the four-inning game.

"Chessie certainly mixes up his pitches," Sawyer said. "He's got a good biting curveball. He's got a good fastball."

Chessie took the loss Monday when Will Snyder hit a three-run, first-inning homer to spark Bayside to a 4-1 victory against Saco.

"It helped me to know where to pitch them," Chessie said of his earlier start against Bayside. "I mean, I knew whether to pitch inside or outside."

Saco took a 2-0 lead in the first when Smith led off with a double and scored on Anthony Bracamonte's solid single to left. Two grounders produced the other run.

Tre Fletcher led off the bottom of the first with his fourth home run of the tournament for Bayside's lone run.

Saco, which batted around twice in the game, put the outcome out of reach early. It scored six runs in the second to move into an 8-1 lead.

Brancamante and Chessie, who had three singles, each drove in three runs. Brogan Searle-Belanger, who had a triple and two singles, had two runs batted in.

Ean Patry and Hunter Penley each singled twice.

Paul Betit can be contacted at 791-6424 or at:

pbetit@pressherald.com

Twitter: PaulBetitPPH

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Additional Photos

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The Saco Little League team earned the banner as the state champion Friday night and the right to play in the East regional. Its first game at Bristol, Conn., will be at 2 p.m. Friday against the Rhode Island champion.

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Anthony Bracamonte, left, and Timmy Smith head back the Saco dugout after scoring on Luke Chessie’s single in the fourth inning against Bayside.

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Luke Chessie allowed three hits in four innings and struck out seven, making up for a loss to Bayside earlier in the week and helping Saco to the Little League state championship.



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