FALMOUTH — Marcus Cady, the No. 9 hitter in the order, was hit by a pitch with the bases loaded in the bottom of the ninth inning Saturday, giving top-ranked Falmouth a 4-3 victory against fourth-seeded Portland in a Class A South baseball semifinal.

Falmouth (17-1), the defending regional champion, will play second-seeded Cheverus (17-1) at 3 p.m. Wednesday at St. Joseph’s College for a trip to next Saturday’s state final in Augusta.

“I didn’t think it was going to hit me at first,” said Cady, who was hitless in three at-bats. “There was one out so basically I was trying to elevate (the ball), get it into the outfield and score the run.”

“It was a curveball that didn’t break,” Falmouth Coach Kevin Winship said. “It was a tough pitch. Unfortunately for them it hit our guy. Fortunately for us we got a run off it.”

Max Fortier led off the winning rally with a single. After he stole second, Griffin Aube was walked intentionally. After both runners moved up on Will Blum’s slow roller to shortstop, Don Tocci – who went the distance for Portland – hit Ike Keily to load the bases, bringing up Cady.

“That was a great high school baseball game between two good teams, and it was fun to be part of it,” Winship said.

For a time, the game looked like last year’s semifinal when Falmouth shut out Portland, 5-0.

The Yachtsmen led 3-0 after four innings.

Garrett Aube hit the second pitch from Tocci over the left-field fence to lead off the bottom of the first.

In the third, Colin Coyne made it 2-0 when he pulled a two-out homer down the left-field line.

With one out in the fourth, Fortier lined an opposide-field double into the left-field corner, moved up on a fly ball and scored when Blum lined a single to center.

The Bulldogs (12-5) managed one hit off starting pitcher Reece Armitage, but it was a big one.

With two outs in the fifth, Dom Tocci walked and Jake Knop followed with a homer over the center-field fence to make it 3-2.

After Armitage, who struck out 10 but walked seven and hit a batter, walked Nick Archambeault, Cam Guarino came on and struck out Tom Joyce to end the inning.

“Our job was to get Armitage’s pitch count up and get into their bullpen,” Portland Coach Mike Rutherford said. “Unfortunately they’ve got Cam Guarino there.”

Guarino, the state’s Gatorade player of the year, pitched 41/3 innings of two-hit relief.

Still, the Bulldogs were able to tie it.

Don Tocci led off the sixth with a double, went to third on a grounder and scored on an error.

“We stared down what I believe are the two best pitchers in the state,” Rutherford said. “It was two well-coached teams battling to the end. That’s how it should be.”