STANDISH — Fryeburg Academy’s softball team might not quite be the juggernaut of the past. But the Raiders still know how to win.

Top-seeded Fryeburg won its fifth consecutive Western Class B championship Thursday afternoon, scoring all its runs in the fourth inning to beat second-seeded Greely 8-1 at Richard Bailey Field at St. Joseph’s College.

The Raiders combined four hits with four Greely errors to overcome a 1-0 deficit.

“They’ve come a long way,” said Fred Apt, who got his 150th win in his 12th season as coach of the Raiders. “I’m proud of them all, but this team has really worked to get here.”

The Raiders (18-1) will play East champ Old Town (16-4) in the Class B state title game at 4 p.m. Saturday at Brewer High School.

Greely finished 16-3.

“This is really special,” said senior third baseman Maggie McConkey, who has been part of four of the regional championships. “Not many players can say they’ve even won one of these games. To win four and to be part of a good softball team for four years is really special.

“I’m just glad to be a part of it.”

The game turned in the fourth inning, but the stage was actually set in the bottom of the third. That’s when Fryeburg’s Carla Tripp battled Greely pitcher Dani Cimino in a 21-pitch at-bat, eventually drawing a walk.

Greely got out of the inning on a rare runner’s interference call that resulted in the third out. And the Rangers took the lead in the top of the fourth when Cimino crushed a two-out home run to left-center.

Then everything unravelled for the Rangers. Sarah Jamo, Greely’s first-year coach, didn’t think the long at-bat took anything out of Cimino, but noted that her team’s defense was certainly lacking.

“I think as a team we saw that one run on the board and relaxed a little bit,” she said. “And you saw that the way we came out to play defensively in the bottom of that inning.”

McConkey led off with a single to center. Winning pitcher Sarah Harriman then bunted down the first-base line. The throw to first was dropped — and McConkey started a mad dash around the bases. She went from first to third, then turned down the line as the throw sailed past third and slid in head-first at the plate, just beating the tag.

“That was all her,” said Apt. “I wasn’t real happy when she kept going from third to home. But I’ll take the end result.”

McConkey said it was all instinct.

“When I was about to get to second, I glanced at third and noticed no one was there,” she said. “And when I was about to get to third, I noticed home was wide open, so I said, ‘Why not go there?’“

Kylie Locke reached on an error, then Bri Pelkie put down a bunt. The throw to third was dropped, loading the bases. Emily Davidson then tripled to right-center, and it was 4-1.

Davidson had been slumping, but bought a new bat earlier this week. After using it in practice Wednesday, she declared it ready to go.

“I didn’t even feel the ball off the bat,” she said. “When I got to second and saw the coach waving me to third, I knew it was a good hit.”

Harriman added a two-run single.

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

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