Scarborough High players surround pitcher Jack Clark, center, as they celebrate their 3-2 win against South Portland in the Class A South final Wednesday. The Red Storm face 19-0 Oxford Hills for the state title Saturday. Brianna Soukup/Staff Photographer

Both teams in Saturday’s Class A baseball championship game can pitch.

South champ Scarborough (15-4) has allowed three runs in three tournament games, including its 3-2, 11-inning upset of top-seeded South Portland in the regional final.

Oxford Hills (19-0) has allowed two runs in its three playoff wins.

The question is: Can Scarborough, which scored more than four runs just once in its last 14 games, keep pace with the slugging Vikings? Oxford Hills is averaging 9.5 runs per game this season heading into the 1 p.m. game Saturday at Morton Field in Augusta.

“In that game and on that stage anything can happen,” said Scarborough Coach Mike D’Andrea. “I don’t have any complaints with this team offensively. We’ve found ways to score.”

The Vikings have been held to fewer than four runs only four times this season, though it happened in their last two playoff wins, against Lewiston and in the regional final against Edward Little.

“We have scored runs but probably only half the pitchers we faced were aces,” said Oxford Hills Coach Shane Slicer. “And I don’t think the pitching was as deep in the North as it was in the South.”

The Vikings have three batters who hit over .400 in the regular season: second baseman Rodney Bean (.491, 21 RBI), center fielder Cameron Slicer (.432 at leadoff, 23 runs), and first baseman Ashton Kennison (.413, 22 RBI). Shortstop Janek Luksza hit .300 with 20 RBI in the regular season and has been the team’s top hitter in the playoffs.

Scarborough doesn’t have gaudy individual numbers. The Red Storm have been getting key hits from different players in each playoff game. In its 4-0 quarterfinal win against Cheverus, Nolan Lamontagne and Nic Frink had two-run hits. Nolan Frink had two hits in the 3-1 win against Falmouth. And in the regional final, Nick Thompson had two hits and DH Peter O’Brien produced the game-winning RBI double.

“We’ve been resilient (with) four, five come-from-behind wins,” D’Andrea said. “This team has just found a way to battle and compete, and it’s been different guys stepping up, and that’s a sign of a good team.”

Neither of the Class A finalists will have their ace available Saturday. Both Colton Carson of Oxford Hills and Scarborough’s Thompson started the regional finals and went well beyond the 65-pitch limit to return on two days rest.

Scarborough does have Jack Clark available. Clark came on in the eighth inning of the regional final and worked 3 2/3 innings of hitless scoreless relief for the win. Clark also shut out Cheverus on seven hits in the quarterfinal.

Oxford Hills will counter with Wyatt Williamson (5-0), who beat Lewiston in the Class A North semifinals. Williamson is the Vikings’ regular catcher. That spot will be manned by Andrew Merrill.

Class B: Ellsworth (18-1) vs. Freeport (16-3)

St. Joseph’s College, Standish, 4:30 p.m.

The Falcons won’t have to worry about running out of pitchers. Shea Wagner (5-0, 1.34 ERA) will get the start, and first-year coach Kyle Goodrich has brothers Heath Cockburn, a junior right-hander, and Blaine Cockburn, a freshman left-hander, available.

Ellsworth also will have its ace on the mound – Matt Burnett, a Winkin Award finalist and Penobscot Valley Conference pitcher of the year. He threw 1 2/3 innings of relief to secure a 9-5 regional final win Wednesday against Hermon.

Freeport will try to win its first baseball state title in its second trip to the final. In 2016 the Falcons made a surprise run to the championship game but were overwhelmed by Old Town 12-2 in five innings.

“I just think this year’s team is deeper than that team,” said senior Toby Holt. “We have more people that can hit, field. Just overall we’re better.”

Class C: Orono (11-8) vs. Lisbon (19-0)

Mansfield Stadium, Bangor, 2 p.m.

Lisbon is another team looking for its first state title. And in its only previous trip, in 2017, Orono defeated the Greyhounds.

Lisbon’s top pitcher, Lucas Francis (another Winkin finalist), earned a complete-game regional final win, 4-3 against Sacopee Valley. But the Greyhounds can call on Noah Austin, another top-tier all-around player. Austin beat Monmouth Academy 8-0 in the Class C South semifinals, taking a no-hitter into the seventh inning.

Austin and Francis also are top hitters in a deep lineup. Hunter Brissette has had a pair of two-hit playoff games with a big two-run triple in the regional final.

Orono has won each playoff game by a single run, including knocking off No. 1 George Stevens Academy 6-5 and edging No. 2 Fort Kent 3-2, in the Class C North final.


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