|Waterville Senior High School||Foxcroft Academy|
BANGOR, Maine — Junior righthander Ryan Rebar pitched a two-hitter and the Foxcroft Academy Ponies erupted for 10 runs in their final two at-bats to pull away from Waterville 10-2 and win their first Eastern Maine Class B baseball title in a decade at Mansfield Stadium on Thursday night.
Foxcroft (15-5) will face Western B champion Falmouth in Saturday’s state final, scheduled for 11 a.m. at Mansfield Stadium.
Waterville, the two-time defending state champion, ended its season with a 17-3 record.
Rebar (8-1) struck out 11 batters and walked three during a 119-pitch complete-game performance and was backed by a 14-hit attack in which every Foxcroft starter had at least one hit — with 10 of those hits coming in the final two innings.
Cody Coiley, Forrest Law and Luke Olson each doubled, singled and drove home three runs while Rebar and Kaleb Smith each singled twice for coach Mark Chevalier’s Ponies, who played in the Eastern C final a year ago before being moved up a class based on enrollment.
Rebar did not allow a hit through the first five innings, but that was only good enough to keep Foxcroft locked in a scoreless deadlock with Waterville, as Purple Panthers’ starter J.T. Whitten limited the Ponies’ offense to four hits during that span.
Whitten, a finalist for the state’s Mr. Baseball Award, was on his way to a scoreless sixth inning as he retired the first two batters he faced, but Rebar flared a single to center, stole second and scored when Hunter Law popped a shallow single just inside the right-field line.
At that moment it seemed like it might be the only run scored in this pitchers’ duel, but the Ponies were just beginning.
An error on Cameron Fadley’s grounder to shortstop kept the inning alive, then Coiley lined a first-pitch double to left-center to drive home Law and Fadley to give Foxcroft a sudden 3-0 lead. Forrest Law hit Waterville reliever Brian Bellows’ first pitch to center field for an RBI single, and after Smith walked, Olson capped off the inning with a two-run double to left to extend the cushion to 6-0.
Waterville finally got to Rebar for two runs on two hits in the bottom of the sixth, as Kaleb Kane singled, Dan Pooler walked, both runners moved up a base on a double steal and then scored on Whitten’s one-out single to center.
Whitten was Waterville’s final baserunner as Rebar retired the final five batters he faced — the final four on strikeouts.
Foxcroft added four insurance runs in the top of the seventh as Forrest Law sandwiched a two-run double to left between RBI singles by Coiley and Olson.