HERMON — The Gray-New Gloucester/Raymond Little League Baseball All-Stars put together another dominant performance to beat Augusta, 12-0, in five innings in the state championship game Sunday.

Kayden Oliver didn’t allow a hit and struck out 13 for Gray-New Gloucester/Raymond, whose four wins in the state tournament were all by at least five runs, with three shutouts.

Gray-New Gloucester/Raymond moves on to the New England Regional in Bristol, Connecticut. The Maine champions will play the New Hampshire state champion at 1 p.m. Saturday.

“It’s unbelievable,” Gray-New Gloucester/Raymond Coach Brad Shelley said. “These boys have been working hard over the last two months. We’ve been playing and coaching with them since they were 5. We’ve been working for this moment for a long time. I’m very happy to see them reach this achievement.”

Oliver was strong from the start, using a fastball that routinely produced an audible pop in catcher Mason Amergian’s mitt. He struck out seven consecutive batters from the second inning through the fourth.

“It felt great (to pitch well),” Oliver said. “It was mostly fastball.”


Gray-New Gloucester/Raymond pitcher Kayden Oliver challenges an Augusta batter during the Little League state final game Sunday in Hermon, Maine Sunday. Oliver didn’t allow a hit in five innings of work, striking out 13 batters. Rich Abrahamson/Morning Sentinel

“(Oliver) is a gamer, he always has been,” Shelley said. “The kid just performs in these big games and he just carries this team on his back.”

Oliver received plenty of help offensively. Third baseman Caleb Barker cracked a triple off the right-field wall in the second inning. He followed that with a line drive over the fence in left-center for a two-run homer in the fourth – part of a five-run inning that increased the lead to 7-0.

Gray-New Gloucester/Raymond ended the game in the fifth, via the mercy rule, on a three-run homer from Amergian, who blasted a pitch well over the fence in left-center.

“(The home run) was just a great feeling,” Amergian said. “It was a fastball, high and outside.”

Shelley said balance has been a key for Gray-New Gloucester/Raymond.

Gray-New Gloucester/Raymond’s Mason Amergian, right, is lifted by a teammate as he celebrates hitting a game-ending home run in the Little League state final Sunday in Hermon. Rich Abrahamson/Morning Sentinel

“These kids have a lot of discipline in the batter’s box,” Shelley said. “When the top of our lineup gets going (offensively), it goes right through, every kid puts a bat on the ball. We always find a way on base, it seems.


“The kids stay consistent, they stay behind each other,” Shelley added. “And our defense has been lights out. Pitching depth has been huge.”

Augusta, which lost 3-2 to Biddeford in eight innings in its tournament opener, won three straight elimination games to reach the state final, including 6-5 over Lincoln County on Friday and 5-1 over Biddeford on Saturday.

“I’m proud; I really couldn’t ask for more,” Augusta Coach Thad Barber said. “These boys never gave up. The hitting, pitching and our defense was the strong part of our team. Today, it wasn’t. And we faced an incredibly difficult pitcher.”

In three innings of work, Augusta starter Nolan Noyes struck out five.

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