FARMINGTON – All Nick Bourassa was looking for was a pitch to lift into the air.

With the winning run standing at third in the person of Shane LeFebvre and just one out in the bottom of the seventh inning of a tie Western Class C quarterfinal, the only question in Bourassa’s mind was whether Monmouth would elect to walk him to set up a double play. If the answer was “No”, which it turned out to be after a long conference at the mound by the Mustangs, the Jay catcher was quite certain what the outcome would be.

“I was looking for something good to hit. (The pitch from Monmouth’s Scott Ogden) was either a high fastball or a curve, and I knew I was (going to get it in the air). I’d been hitting them out to the outfield the whole time,” said Bourassa, who had doubled, flied to center and popped out to short in his previous at-bats. “I didn’t care if it was a line drive for a pop up to left field, as long as it got there.”

It ended up being closer to the former than the latter. Bourassa swung at Ogden’s first pitch and laced it into left field for a base hit that scored LeFebvre and gave the fourth-seeded Tigers a dramatic 6-5 comeback win over No. 5 Monmouth Friday.

Jay (12-5) will face top-seeded Dirigo in the semifinals.

Lefebvre got the game-winning rally with a looping leadoff double that just eluded the dive of a hard-charging Ben Seefeldt in center field. Mike DeSanctis moved Lefebvre to third with a perfect bunt.

“Mike DeSanctis laid down a great bunt,” said Jay coach Chris Bessey. “We talked before about exactly what we were going to do if Shane got on. We were planning on stealing him, so when Shane ended up on second, he already knew what was going to happen.”

Monmouth had the option of pitching to Bourassa or walking him to face Jamison Turner, who had singled in his previous at-bat, to set up an inning-ending double play. They could also set up a double play or a force out at any base by walking both Bourassa and Turner, but that would have brought up the No. 3 hitter, Zane Armandi, arguably Jay’s best hitter.

“When you start walking them, then they can do a little bit more and then you get closer to Armandi,” Monmouth coach Eric Palleschi said of his decision to pitch to Bourassa. “We figured we’d take our chances there. He hit a good pitch. Scotty threw a curve ball and he was able to stay on it and got a good piece of it.”

Monmouth (11-5) had taken a 5-3 lead in the top of the sixth on Ronnie Hobson’s two-run single with two out, but Jay answered back in the bottom of the frame. With one out and Turner at third, Ryan Bourassa swung at strike three in the dirt and hustled to first, forcing a high throw by the catcher that allowed the tying run to reach and Turner to score and make it 5-4. After Bourassa stole second, Mike Nelson singled to right to plate him with the tying run.

“They did a good job battling back from losing the lead at 5-3 and then tying it again in the next inning,” Bessey said. “That’s what these guys do. They battle.”

The game was moved from Jay to Mt. Blue High School because the recent rainy conditions have rendered Jay’s home diamond unplayable. Both teams escaped the sloppy field but still played sloppy baseball in the early going. Jay scored three runs in the bottom of the first with the help of three Monmouth errors, but the Tigers returned the favor in the top of the second with two errors that helped the Mustangs tie it.

Eric Murphy had three hits and an RBI for Monmouth. Nelson led the Tigers’ offense with two hits and two RBIs.


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