A crowd of several dozen gathered Saturday afternoon in Cape Elizabeth to watch the de facto Class B state championship boys’ tennis match between Falmouth and Cape Elizabeth.

Actually, it was only the Western Maine semifinals, but these are the top two programs in the state, regardless of class, even if the Heal point rankings don’t reflect it.

Cape Elizabeth continued its unbeaten season with a 5-0 victory that was closer than the score indicates. The top two singles matches were decided by 10-point tiebreakers, and the second doubles match also involved a tiebreaker.

Cape senior Matt Gilman, who has been playing No. 1 since he was a freshman, earned his first-ever victory against a Falmouth player by edging junior Brendan McCarthy, the state singles runner-up, 6-4, 3-6, 10-5.

At No. 2 singles, Peter Higgins of Cape outlasted Aiden McGrory of Falmouth, 5-7, 6-3, 15-13.

“From the beginning of the year, everyone knew it was going to come down to the two of us. At least we were hoping that,” said Cape Elizabeth Coach Andy Strout, whose team somehow received a No. 2 seed despite playing in a tougher conference than No. 1 Lincoln Academy. Lincoln was beaten 3-2 by No. 8 York in the regional quarterfinals.

York went 6-6 in the Western Maine Conference, and in matches with Falmouth (twice), Cape Elizabeth and Waynflete was a combined 2-38 in sets, with the only match victories coming in second doubles against Class C Waynflete.

Still, it will be the Wildcats (9-6) traveling to Bates College Wednesday to face Cape Elizabeth (14-0) in the Western Maine final.

Had the Cape-Falmouth match not been clinched by the time Gilman and McCarthy and Higgins and McGrory split sets, they would played third sets.

Instead, considering “it was already 6:30, we let the players decide,” Strout said. “Everyone else was done by almost a half an hour.”

TRACK AND FIELD

The Bonny Eagle girls came within six points of winning the Class A state championship Saturday in Brewer. But after the final event on the track — the 1,600-meter relay — the Scots were far from disappointed.

Senior Sam Cox and junior Audrey Weyand spoke only about how proud they were of their team after helping the Scots win the 1,600 relay by 10 seconds with a time of 4 minutes, 5.79 seconds. Bonny Eagle finished behind only Bangor in the final standings.

“We did great. We had a lot of heart,” said Cox. “We could have been broken by the heat. But a lot of us had (personal best) times. All of us did in the 800.”

Cox placed second in the 800 in 2:18.88, Kyaunna Libby took third (2:21.51), and freshman Kialeigh Marston was fourth (2:23.06). All three also ran the 1,600 relay along with Weyand.

 

THERE WERE 19 facility records set Saturday at Brewer Community School.

But Brewer Coach Glendon Rand pointed out it was only the school’s second year hosting meets on its new track, and the first big meet there.

“We always wanted to host a state meet, but we had to wait for this. There were two years we didn’t have a track to train on. We ran in the halls and the parking lot,” Rand said of the team that went without a home track.

The Brewer girls finished third behind Bangor and Bonny Eagle, led by four-event winner Teal Jackson, who set a state record in the 400.

 

THE SCARBOROUGH boys won their first Class A outdoor title, adding to the 10 championships the program won from 1983 to 2001 as a Class B school. The Red Storm beat Cheverus by nine points.

“We were fortunate,” said Scarborough Coach Derek Veilleux. “Cheverus is a great team. Cheverus was the favorite. And, we haven’t even been close in the past, not since we won (the last Class B) title in 2001. But we had a lot of younger guys stepping up.”

 

RECORD SETTERS Kate Hall of Lake Region and Bethanie Brown of Waterville knew how to beat the heat and humidity at the Class B state meet at McMann Field in Bath.

“Sprinters love the heat, and I love the heat, too,” said Hall, a sophomore who set a meet record with her time of 12.15 seconds in the 100-meter dash and an overall state record with her leap of 18 feet, 5¾ inches in the long jump. “But this heat drains you a little bit, so I was a little worried about that. I did my best to stay in the shade and had a towel (wrapped) around my head the whole time, and it worked out fine.”

When she wasn’t on the track, Brown carried an umbrella and a bag of ice with her.

“Today is a hot day with lots of events, so I was being a little cautious,” said Brown, a senior who set a meet record in the 800 with her time of 2:16.5 to help the Panthers claim their seventh consecutive state title.

Hall and Brown each won three individual events and ran a leg on a victorious relay team.

SOFTBALL

The SMAA playoffs may not have the prestige they once carried — but the competition still has value, said Scarborough Coach Tom Griffin and South Portland Coach Ralph Aceto.

Scarborough beat South Portland 9-1 in the championship game Saturday after edging Sanford 1-0 in the semifinals. South Portland beat Thornton Academy 10-4 in the other semifinal.

The league playoffs are for the top four teams in the Western Class A Heal point standings, each of which receives a bye to Thursday’s regional quarterfinals.

“You’re going to play a scrimmage anyway,” between the end of the regular season and the start of the playoffs, Griffin said. “I like the idea of playing a game that has some meaning to it. Our girls look forward to it.”

“I don’t know if we approach it the same as other teams,” Aceto said. “I approach it as I want to play two games. I use my starters in the first game, and then in the second game start most of my regulars and then get some kids in the game that might not see any time the rest of the year in the playoffs.”

 

THE EXTRA games can also uncover a gem — or cost a team key player.

Scarborough’s No. 2 pitcher and cleanup hitter, senior Erin Giles, took a liner off her shin in the second inning of the SMAA championship game. The leg quickly swelled and she was taken to the hospital.

Griffin said X-rays were negative, but Giles will probably be off her leg for a day or two and her status for Thursday’s quarterfinal is not yet determined.

Griffin noted that since his team would have been playing a scrimmage, there is always a threat of injury.

With Giles out of the game, sophomore Sophia Burnham showed she can handle a pressure situation. Burnham had not pitched this season, but she relieved Giles and threw 52/3 scoreless innings.

“The whole team was mentally distraught when Erin went down,” Griffin said. “Sophia came in, it was her first high school experience, and she did great.”

Coming off knee surgery, Burnham has been a regular in the Scarborough lineup as an outfielder and designated player. Griffin had hoped to use her as a reliever during the season, but after she pitched during the Red Storm’s vacation-week trip to Florida, she experienced swelling in the knee. Only in the last few weeks had she begun throwing again on the side

 

— Staff Writers Deirdre Fleming, Steve Craig and Glenn Jordan contributed to this report.