CUMBERLAND — Maybe the top seed in the tournament doesn’t mean that much after all.

It didn’t seem to mean much to Fryeburg Academy’s softball team Wednesday.

The Raiders secured the No. 1 seed in the Western Class B tournament by beating Greely – which entered the game ranked first – 3-1 on a standout pitching performance by Sarah Harriman.

Afterward, it was a very muted celebration.

“For us,” said catcher Carla Tripp, “we just want to play. We just want to have fun.”

Greely had beaten Fryeburg 8-1 on April 23, scoring three runs in the top of the first.

This time Greely scored an unearned run in the bottom of the first and could have had more except for an exceptional play by Tripp and third baseman Maggie McConkey. Then Harriman shut the door.

She allowed only three base runners over the final six innings, at one point retiring 13 consecutive batters.

“We had a great game plan going in and she hit her spots,” said Raiders Coach Fred Apt. “All the pitches we called, she hit the spots and she kept them off balance.”

Harriman struck out 10 and walked one. She also hit a batter.

“My rise was working pretty well,” she said. “And my change was all right, too.”

Fryeburg enters the tournament with a 15-1 record, winning 13 straight. Greely is 14-2.

The Rangers had a chance to break this open early. A two-out error in the bottom of the first allowed Dani Cimino to reach. A passed ball and single by Elyse Dinan put Cimino on third, and she scored on a blooper to right by Edith Aromando. A hit batter loaded the bases.

Then Tripp and McConkey made their play. After Harriman threw ball two to Mykaela Twitchell, Tripp threw to third to pick off Dinan for the last out of the inning.

“Me and (McConkey), after that first pitch, we saw the runner take that big lead,” said Tripp. “We made eye contact. I knew the next pitch I was going to throw it. And (McConkey) knew too.”

It was a close play and Fryeburg got the call.

“That set the tone a little bit,” said Rangers Coach Sarah Jamo. “And we couldn’t bounce back after that.”

Fryeburg scored three in the top of the second to take control.

With two on and two outs, No. 9 hitter Maddy Smith lashed an 0-2 pitch to right for a triple to score both. She scored when the relay throw from the outfield hit her and went into left field.

“At first I thought she was going to catch it,” said Smith. “I was down two strikes and knew I needed a hit.”

From there it was Harriman’s game.

She allowed a base runner in the second (on an error), sixth (single by Cimino) and seventh (two-out walk).

“I was glad to see us respond because the last time we played them, we got down and couldn’t respond,” said Apt. “We’re a different team right now and that showed the way we responded.”

The No. 1 seed seemed to mean more to Apt than his players.

“I’ve been saying all week it doesn’t mean a lot, but it means a great deal to us,” he said. “Just the emotional edge.

“Raider pride is a big thing and we’re going to try to keep it going. Such a tradition has been built, we want to keep it going.”

Staff Writer Mike Lowe can be contacted at 791-6422 or at:

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Twitter: MikeLowePPH