SACO — The Gorham baseball team has been staring at elimination for two weeks. So why blink now, when facing a preliminary-round playoff game at Thornton Academy?

The Rams scored six times in the top of the first inning Tuesday and pushed the fifth-seeded Trojans out of the postseason with a dominating 13-2 victory.

“We thought it was going to be a good test and we were ready,” Gorham senior Andrew Schmidt said. “Our approach was just put it in play. We knew their defense wasn’t that strong and it showed. We put balls in play, they couldn’t handle the pressure and just dropped a couple of them.”

The Rams (9-8) got a two-run single from Gerek Brown and a two-run double by Logan Drouin, back in the lineup for the first time in a half-dozen games after injuring his thumb, to fuel that opening outburst. It was the worst inning of the year for Thornton Academy ace Benjamin Lambert, who compounded things by bobbling a grounder back to the mound for one of the two Trojan errors in the inning.

“He had trouble spotting the ball. We were trying to go down and away, and he kept drifting back in and they jumped on it,” Trojans Coach Ray Petit said. “They did a great job hitting.”

Gorham had to win its final three games of the regular season just to capture the 12th and final seed in the Western Class A playoffs. The Rams were able to survive Westbrook, Cheverus and South Portland to carry some momentum into the game against Thornton (11-6).

The Trojans, confronted with a startling early deficit, started to chip away, scoring a run in the bottom of the first and another in the second off Gorham starter Sam Kilborn. Lambert, meanwhile, returned to his usual form, fanning four and pitching four shutout innings after the first.

Gorham maintained control by surviving the bottom of the third, when Thornton Academy loaded the bases with one out on a pair of walks and a hit batter. Kilborn responded with his first strikeout and a groundout to end that threat, then finished off the victory by retiring 12 of the last 14 batters he faced.

After his clutch third inning, Kilborn came off the mound and delivered some good news to Coach Chuck Nadeau.

“He actually said, ‘Coach, I’ve found what was wrong (with his delivery) and I’ve fixed it.’ I said, ‘Good for you, so we don’t have to worry anymore,’ ” Nadeau said.

Said Petit of that sequence: “I felt comfortable when we got the one back, got the two back. They were feeling good about themselves and then I kind of felt the wind go out of their sails when we didn’t get a bunch of runs there.”

Schmidt broke the game open with a two-run double as part of a three-run sixth for Gorham. The Rams tacked on four runs in the seventh.

Next up is a quarterfinal Thursday at No. 4 seed Falmouth (10-6).

“When we were 2-5, we told the kids, ‘We believe we’ve got the right guys, we believe we’ve got the right approach and you guys are going to have to trust your efforts, trust your talents, trust your teammates and trust us as coaches,’ ” Nadeau said. “And the kids did that all year. We trusted in what we’re doing. We started to get some breaks. Baseball’s funny. We’re on a good roll right now but it can change in a hurry.”