June 16, 2013

Class A baseball: Westbrook ends long title drought

The Blue Blazes dethrone Messalonskee and earn their first state championship since 1951.

By Tom Chard tchard@pressherald.com
Staff Writer

(Continued from page 1)

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There was a point when the Westbrook baseball team had to address the reasons it wasn't playing as well as it should. Problems addressed and a month later, Class A state title won, with a 2-0 victory against Messalonskee.

Joe Phelan/Kennebec Journal

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Zack Bean didn’t have any strikeouts for Westbrook, but he didn’t need any. He allowed just five hits and was backed by a defense that helped propel the Blue Blazes to the Class A baseball title.

Joe Phelan/Kennebec Journal

The Blazes piled on one another between the mound and the first-base line in a wild celebration.

"It felt pretty great getting the final out," said Joyce. "It was an amazing feeling when it left my hand. I knew it was over.

"I just threw my glove up in the air."

Bean didn't have any strikeouts but walked only one.

And the Blazes' defense was outstanding, turning three double plays.

"My fastball was working," said Bean. "I got a lot of ground- ball outs. Their pitcher pitched well. He kept us off balance. It was just a question of who would score first."

One of the best defensive plays came in the bottom of the sixth when Lowe let a Bean pickoff throw get away from him.

Lowe hurried to retrieve the ball in foul territory, then flipped to Joyce at second, who tagged the runner out.

"We made all the plays and got the breaks," said Souza. "It's hard to get to a state final. You have to be a little lucky."

Messalonskee Coach Ray Bernier said Westbrook's defense was outstanding.

"I'm a firm believer in defense wins, and Westbrook definitely played outstanding defense," he said. "Our pitcher wasn't expected to go that long, but he kept hitting his spots and kept them off balance.

"Patrick doesn't throw hard but he knows how to locate his pitches." 

Tom Chard can be contacted at 791-6419 or at:

tchard@pressherald.com

Twitter: TomChardPPH

 

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