Just one pitch.

That was the difference between a win and a loss when Scarborough and South Portland, two of the top softball teams in the state, hooked up in a classic matchup in Scarborough Monday night.

The one pitch that made the difference was delivered to Scarbrorough’s Dominique Burnham in the bottom of the fifth inning and Burnham drove it over the fence for a grand slam that clinched the 5-0 win for the Storm.

The loss knocked the Red Riots (10-1) out of the top spot in the latest Class A Heal Points, with the Red Storm (9-0) taking over first place.

The game was played in front of a huge crowd that included players from several other local softball teams, most of them still in uniform from their games earlier in the day.

On a night where the weather was more suited for football than softball, the Riots and the Storm blew through the first four innings with Scarborough starter Melissa Dellatorre and South Portland pitcher Alexis Bogdanovich blowing away batters. Bogdanovich had six strikeouts through four innings and Dellatorre had six as well.

The fifth inning is were things fell apart for the Riots.

It started out innocently enough, with Alana Peoples leading off with a short fly ball that landed in the infield for a single. After the game, South Portland coach Ralph Aceto explained his fielders’ confusion on the play. “Put it on the coach,” Aceto said. “The coach was the one who yelled on the fly ball for someone he shouldn’t have.”

While Peoples was eventually erased on the basepaths, the play would still prove to be costly for the Riots as the Storm loaded the bases in the inning on a walk by Marissa O’Toole, a fielders’ choice from Jenn Colpitts and a single by Heather Carrier.

With the bases loaded and one out, disaster struck for South Portland. After getting Mo Hannon for the second out, Bogdanovich tried to get an inside pitch past Abby Rutt. The pitch hit Rutt in the foot, forcing home O’Toole with the first run of the game.

With the bases still loaded, Burnham stepped up to the plate, hoping to get some more runs for her team.

And she did in a big way.

Burnham blasted the first pitch of the at bat high over the left field fence for a grand slam, bringing the entire Red Storm team out of the dugout to celebrate.

Burnham said she got an inside fastball and she knew it had a chance to go out when she made contact. “I knew I hit it well,” she said. “(But) I wasn’t sure it would stay fair.”

As soon as she got to first base, she knew she had a home run, one that was very special to her. “It was awesome,” she said. “It was my first home run ever.”

Scarborough coach Tom Griffin praised Burnham after the game. “Dominique is a really special hitter, she works so hard at it,” he said.

Aceto said that he was watching from the dugout, and he didn’t think the ball was going to go out. “When she hit it, I thought my left fielder was going to have a chance to make a play on it,” he said, adding that he told Burnham that he was impressed with the hit.

After the Burnham slam, the Riots settled down and ended the inning, but spotted to a 5-0 lead, the Storm kept up the pressure and shut down the South Portland attack for the last two innings to seal the win.

Members of the Scarborough softball team charge to home plate to celebrate Dominique Burnham’s grand slam in the fifth inning of the Red Storm’s 5-0 win over South Portland Monday night.
Staff photo by Mike Higgins
South Portland pitcher Alexis Bogdanovich gathers herself together after surrendering a fifth-inning grand slam to Scarborough’s Dominique Burnham Monday.
Staff photo by Mike Higgins
Scarborough’s Jenn Colpitts is out at first in this third-inning play against South Portland.
Staff photo by Mike Higgins
In what would prove to be a key play in the game, South Portland’s Danica Gleason (left) and Danielle DiBiase watch as a bloop hit by Scarborough’s Alana Peoples falls in the outfield during the fifth inning on Monday. South Portland coach Ralph Aceto explained his fielders’ confusion on the play. “Put it on the coach,” Aceto said. “The coach was the one who yelled on the fly ball for someone he shouldn’t have.”
Staff photo by Mike Higgins
Members of the South Portland infield gather around pitcher Alexis Bogdanovich before the start of an inning Monday.
Staff photo by Mike Higgins
South Portland’s Emily Masters is caught stealing Monday.
Staff photo by Mike Higgins
Scarborough’s Melissa Dellatorre was the winning pitcher in the Red Storm’s 5-0 win over South Portland Monday night.
Staff photo by Mike Higgins
Scarborough’s Erin Bogdanovich slides back to first Monday night.
Staff photo by Mike Higgins
With a big crowd looking on, Scarborough’s Abby Rutt takes a swing against South Portland Monday night.
Staff photo by Mike Higgins


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