Mike Berry says his Skowhegan 10-and-under Cal Ripken team has as good a shot as any to win the state tournament, which opens play today in Harrison.

“I’m hoping we can win it,” he said. “Maybe not run through the state tournament, but win it, and then hopefully go on to New Englands. I know we have a very good team.”

Skowhegan has yet to allow a run in the postseason. It outscored its opposition 43-0 in four wins on its way to the District 5 title.

The summer youth baseball/softball tournaments are gearing up this month. The Cal Ripken Baseball All-Star state tournaments get under way this weekend. District tournaments are also under way in Little League.

“I have to believe (Skowhegan) is the team to beat,” said 10-U Maranacook coach Rob Schmidt, whose team won District 3 and scrimmaged Skowhegan. “If anyone is better than them it’d be quite remarkable.”

Added Berry: “We have six who can pitch, but we have three who do the majority of the pitching.”

Marcus Christopher and Ryan Savage are the top pitchers for Skowhegan, which will play District 6 champ Monmouth at 6 tonight at Radar Field.

Maranacook will play District 4 champ Ararat at 3 p.m. today.

“The first couple of practices and in the scrimmage before the Districts we did not look very good,” Schmidt said. “I was pessimistic, honestly. Throughout District tournament, though, we proved ourselves. Its been amazing to me to see all the players step up.”

Maranacook went 6-1 in the District 3 tournament.

Cam Knowles, Skyler Boucher and Garrett Whitten anchored the pitching staff while Jared Schmidt caught 41 of the 43 innings Maranacook played.

The 12-and-under Cal Ripken tournament begins today at the Recreation Field Complex in Fryeburg.

Fairfield, which finished runner-up in District 5 but received a berth because District 7 had no representative, opens against Sacopee Valley at 10 a.m.

Farmington plays Ararat at 12:30 p.m. before District 6 champ Gardiner squares off against District 5 champ Messalonskee.

“I think we have a shot,” Messalonskee coach Jerry Joy said. “We’ve played four of the teams in our bracket and have done well against them. Hopefully, we’ll go down and our pitching will be on. Our pitching has been pretty dominating.”

Josh Roy and Tyler Noonan lead Messalonskee on the mound.

Roy also hit .617 and three home runs in the district tournament. Colby Dexter and Jacob Bouchard each hit over .400 in the district tournament as well.

“We can hit and we can pitch,” Joy said. “We have a pretty solid team.”

The District 5 Little League tournaments are in full swing as well. The 11- and 12-year-olds opened play Friday and will continue through the weekend and into next week.

The 9- and 10-year-olds will wrap up District 5 play this weekend. Auburn Suburban will play Elliot at Vassalboro Field at 10 a.m. Auburn Suburban can clinch the title with a victory.

In softball action, the Brewer Witches Invitational began Friday and runs through the weekend. The tournament is run through the Maine Amateur Softball Association.

Maine ASA will also host the Fairfield Coca Cola Classic beginning July 13 and the Pamdif Tournament in Waterville on July 27.

The Messalonskee Area Youth Softball Association is hosting a Triple Play tournament this weekend as well.

Eight 10-and-under teams and seven 16-and-under teams will compete at the Sidney Fields. A three-team 12-and-under tournament is scheduled for Sunday.

“We’ll have a good turnout,” said Matt Hunt, who is running the events. “We have more teams than what we’ve had in the past.”

The 10-and-under tournament will feature teams from Augusta, Monmouth, Skowhegan, Fairfield/Winslow and Brewer.

Several area ASA teams also recently won state championships.

The Capitol Maniacs won the 10-and-under title. The Maine Riptide won the 14-and-under B title while the Maine Thunder took home the 16-and-under A crown.

Bill Stewart — 621-5640

[email protected]

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