BRISTOL, Conn. – The Maine state champions from the Yarmouth Little League took a very tentative first step in their New England Regional opener.

Starting pitcher Bobby Murray got touched up early and the hitters never got fully untracked Friday as Goffstown, N.H., racked up five runs in the first two innings on the way to a 5-2 victory at Breen Field.

New Hampshire starter Cam Bond struck out 11 and yielded three singles through four innings before approaching the 85-pitch limit.

All of Goffstown’s runs came on homers — a towering two-run shot by Dakota Mulcay in the first inning and a three-run blast by Bond in the second.

“It was close to what I expected,” Yarmouth Manager Jay Tobias said. “I thought the boys were going to be tight early. My concern was how they were going to react, up or down, toward the end of the game.”

Bond walked Chris Romano leading off the game. He struck out the next two batters but then walked Joe DeFusco.

Tobias tried to grab the early lead on a delayed double steal, but DeFusco was tagged out by first baseman Nate Proulx before Romano was able to score.

Every other out Bond recorded was by strikeout.

“I felt like we were going up to the plate nervous and without a plan,” Tobias said. “The only reason we’re here is because they’ve come to the plate with a plan and some swagger. I thought they were a little nervous at first and then it started to turn. I know they can recover.”

Yarmouth brought the tying run to the plate against New Hampshire reliever Proulx in the fifth inning.

Romano reached on an infield error and advanced to second on a single by Murray (2 for 4). Grant Tobias flied deep to right and Romano took third. Romano scored on a wild pitch and Murray advanced two bases. DeFusco’s grounder to short sent Murray home.

Luke Klenda (2 for 2, walk) rapped a two-out double and C.J. Cawley walked, but Chris Amoroso popped out to first, leaving Yarmouth three runs short.

Conor O’Donnell walked to start the sixth but was erased on a double play. Romano lined a single to left but Murray hit into a game-ending force at second. Colby St. Pierre earned the save.

“With the type of pitching we’re going to see going forward, we’re going to need to swing the bat,” Manager Tobias said.

“I told the kids after the game, when we put the ball in play, good things happen. When we did today, we put runners in scoring position and scored runs but we’re looking at third (strikes).”

Klenda replaced Murray on the mound with two outs in the second inning and threw three innings of shutout ball.

“(Klenda) keeps even the best of hitters on his toes because he mixes his pitches and has a very sneaky fastball,” Manager Tobias said.

Yarmouth will meet Fairfield, Conn., at 8 tonight as the round-robin portion of the tournament continues. The Maine representative will play Barre, Vt., at 11 a.m. Sunday and then will meet Andover, Mass., at 10 a.m. Tuesday in a game that will be televised by NESN.

The top two survivors will square off in the New England final at 10 a.m. Aug. 13.