STANDISH — Several minutes after the game had ended, Scarborough Coach Mike D’Andrea pointed over to the opposing dugout and said, “They’re a very good team and we feel fortunate to be in the position we are.”

There’s a slew of teams that would love to be in Scarborough’s position.

The third-seeded Red Storm got a run-scoring double from Peter O’Brien in the top of the 11th inning to defeat top-seeded South Portland 3-2 Wednesday afternoon in the Class A South baseball championship game at Mahaney Diamond at St. Joseph’s College.

“I’ve been waiting for this for a long time,” said Scarborough senior pitcher Jack Clark, holding the plaque for the Red Storm’s first regional title since 2012. “This means so much. We had nothing to lose, we were the underdog.”

The Red Storm (15-4) will play Oxford Hills in the state final at 2 p.m. Saturday at Augusta’s Morton Field.

South Portland (17-2) committed five errors – two in the 11th inning. Nick Thompson led off the 11th with a pop fly to center field that was dropped. An errant pickoff throw allowed Thompson to get to second.

After Gus Lappin got a strikeout, O’Brien stepped in.

“I was just looking for a pitch that I could barrel up,” said O’Brien. “Just drive in that run. I saw the pitch and I knew that was my pitch to hit.”

He lined a 2-1 pitch into the gap in right-center. Thompson initially hesitated, then took off, and D’Andrea waved him home for the go-ahead run.

In the bottom of the 11th, Clark got the first two outs. Noah Lewis reached on an error and stole second, but Clark finished the game with a strikeout – his sixth in 3 2/3 innings in relief of Thompson.

“We just gave them too many chances,” said South Portland Coach Mike Owens. “And when Clark came in, he was great, he just blew us away. We looked really uncomfortable at the plate.”

Clark came in to pitch with one out in eighth after Thompson reached the pitch count limit of 110. Clark set down the first 10 batters he faced before Lewis reached on an error.

“Pound the zone,” said Clark, when asked about his pitching approach. “Keep it away. I knew the (strike) zone was a little out today, so as long as I could keep it outside I could get my two-seam (fastball) to run back in. And they didn’t do too much off that.”

Lewis started on the mound for South Portland and allowed just four hits before reaching the pitch limit with one out in the ninth. He struck out eight and walked two.

Scarborough took a 1-0 lead in the top of the first inning on a two-out RBI double by Thompson. South Portland answered with a run in the second and another in the third for a 2-1 lead, but the Red Storm tied it in the fifth when Noah Frink walked, stole second and scored on a throwing error.

D’Andrea praised his team for its resiliency, and Clark for his performance. “He did what we needed him to do,” D’Andrea said. “And as a team, the boys did what they needed to do … I’m proud of them.”


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