BREWER — Courtney Brochu likes the postseason.

The Scarborough senior second baseman clubbed her first home run of the season, a grand slam, as part of a seven-run sixth inning to break things wide open, and the Red Storm rolled to their third consecutive Class A softball state championship with an 11-1 thumping of Skowhegan on Saturday at Coffin Field. For unbeaten Scarborough, it was the program’s seventh state title and fifth via a victory over Skowhegan.

Brochu’s only other home run in a Red Storm uniform came in last year’s playoffs.

“Before I went up, I was thinking this could be the last at-bat of my career,” said Brochu, Scarborough’s lone senior starter. “As soon as it hit off my bat, I was like ‘Oh my god.’ I guess there’s something about the playoffs. It just felt amazing to go out that way. It couldn’t get any better.”

Even though there was plenty of other offense from Scarborough, Brochu’s big swing provided more than enough for junior pitcher Bella Dickinson, who tossed a two-hitter with 12 strikeouts, masterfully weaving in a changeup alongside her punishing fastball.

“What a great game for Courtney,” Scarborough coach Tom Griffin said. “That’s a senior we’re going to highly miss next year. She’s been doing it all year for us — big hits, big plays, offensively, defensively. She’s such a clutch kid, such a good kid, and I’m so happy for her to end her career here that way.”

Sydney Reed had both of the hits for Skowhegan (19-1), including a home run to right-center in the third for the North champions only run.

“She had a really good changeup,” Reed said of Dickinson. “She didn’t really throw it to me that often, but she threw it to a lot of my teammates. We couldn’t really string together a lot of hits.”

After surrendering the solo shot to Reed, Dickinson struck out five of the next six batters she faced and recorded six of the next eight outs via the K.

“(Dickinson’s) just absolutely solid,” Griffin said. “She’s such a competitor, probably the best athlete I’ve ever coached. … Once she started getting that changeup and controlling that changeup, lights out. You just can’t time it up and you’ve got that in your head.”

Ahead 3-1 in the sixth, Scarborough’s big inning started off meagerly. Skowhegan pitcher Sydney Ames allowed a one-out double to Katherine Roy, and Roy advanced to third on the second out of the frame, a sacrifice form No. 7 hitter Mollie Verreault.

From there, the floodgates opened.

A weak pop-up for Hannah Gower dropped between Ames and first baseman Mariah Dunbar for an RBI hit, Ava McDonald dropped a bunt single and after Dickinson’s walk, Ariella Swett beat out a high chopper to third for another infield hit.

All of the activity and pressure on the Skowhegan defense served to set the stage for Brochu, who drilled a 1-0 pitch over everything in right-center.

“We completely broke it open,” Brochu said. “Anything can start a big inning, and that showed it. It was a huge inning. It took the game away.”

“You’ve got to credit her on that grand slam,” Reed said. “That was insane.”

In a matter of less than 10 minutes in real time, Skowhegan’s upset hopes were dashed.

“We found a way to hang in there, and I think there were a couple of plays in that one inning that came back to bite us,” Skowhegan coach Lee Johnson said. “Against a good team like that, all it takes is one swing to make things look a whole lot different than they did before.”

Scarborough started quickly with three runs in the second inning. After a hit batter and two walks from Ames loaded the bases, Dickinson helped her own cause with a bases-clearing triple to the fence in right-center field for a 3-0 lead.

Ten of the 11 Scarborough runs — the Red Storm tacked on another in the seventh — came with two outs.

“That shows how dangerous our lineup can be,” Griffin said. “We just need to get some runners on base, and we just emphasize ‘stay aggressive, stay aggressive.’ We want to be aggressive and open things up.”

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