OLD ORCHARD BEACH – Post 51, which would have been eliminated from the American Legion baseball state tournament with a loss, totaled 13 runs in the first two innings Saturday night and coasted to a 14-4 victory against First Title at The Ballpark.

The game ended when Post 51 scored in the bottom of the seventh to invoke the 10-run rule.

With three teams remaining, all with one loss in the double-elimination tournament, Post 51 will play Pastime Club of Lewiston at 1 p.m. Sunday. The winner will play First Title at approximately 4 p.m. for the title.

Every batter for Post 51 — stocked with Messalonskee High players who won the Class A state title — had at least one hit, led by Sam Dexter with three and Matt Woodbury and Blair Blaisdell with two apiece. Post 51 had no extra-base hits but stole six bases.

“Today the top of the order just tore it up,” Post 51 Coach Paul Jacobs said. “That’s basically what we can do. We’ve got nine good players. We want to play two tomorrow and we’re ready.”

Post 51 pitcher Reid Nutter went all seven innings, allowing five hits. Isiah Fleming, who pitched eight innings Thursday, will start today against Pastime Club. By Legion rules, Fleming can pitch up to 12 innings today. Post 51’s next two pitching options are probably Jake Dexter and Blair Blaisdell.

First Title Coach Mac McKew is hoping the combination of Louie DiStasio and Harry Ridge will be enough today. DiStasio and Ridge threw complete games over the first two days of the tournament.

“Those are the two guys that will get it done,” McKew said. “Those are our 1-2 guys.”

Post 51 broke out for five runs in the first. Blaisdell and Sam Dexter singled, and Blaisdell scored from second when First Title threw the ball away trying for a double play on a grounder.

With two outs, a runner on second and the score 1-0, the inning was still manageable for First Title, made up of Cheverus High players. But Zach Mathieu walked, Devin Warren got an infield single and Woodbury scored on a wild pitch. Nutter walked, and Josh Doolan then tapped a roller than turned into a two-run single when Warren hustled home from second. That made it 4-0, and when Nutter came home on an errant pickoff throw, it was 5-0.

In the second, Post 51 scored eight times on six hits and four walks. Woodbury, Jake Dexter, and Sam Dexter each had two-run singles in the inning.


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