Madison’s senior catcher popped up behind the plate in the sixth inning Saturday and nearly had her third straight at-bat end in frustrating fashion. Instead, the Bucksport catcher couldn’t come up with the catch up against the fence.

“That was a big sense of relief because that would have been very disappointing to me,” LeBlanc said. “After that, I knew I had to make up for that.”

LeBlanc followed that with a drive to right that turned into an RBI triple, plating the winning run as Madison upended Bucksport 3-1 in the Class C state championship softball game at Bailey Field at St. Joseph’s College. It is the second state crown for the Bulldogs in three seasons.

After two frustrating previous at-bats, LeBlanc was pleased to finally come through.

“I was really disappointed in myself,” said LeBlanc, who struck out and popped out in the previous at-bats. “I knew I had to pick it up and get one for the team. So I focused on getting the ball in play.”

LeBlanc drove in pitcher Madeline Wood with that hit, and later scored on a sacrifice fly for an insurance marker.

“It’s amazing,” said LeBlanc, who is a Miss Maine Softball finalist. “It’s an indescribable feeling. I’m just so proud of my team. It’s incredible to be (20-0) I don’t think we’ve done it in a long time. This year we had very high expectations for ourselves and thought we should be able to win it all.”

Wood got the win for Madison. She allowed just four hits and struck out seven. Katelin Saunders pitched well for Bucksport, scattering six hits and striking out five.

“My fastball was my best pitch,” said Wood, who scored the winning run by racing around the bases for a home run in a 1-0 win over Calais in 2014. “I hit my location pretty good.”

Sydney LeBlanc had two hits for Madison, while Darian Jellison led the Bucks (18-2) with a pair of hits.

“Our hitting wasn’t up to par,” said Bucksport coach Michael Carrier, whose team defeated Telstar for the title last year. “We were a little excited. I don’t know why. All of them were here last year.”

Tied 1-1 in the sixth inning, Madison had the part of the order that could make something happen. Wood, the No. 3 hitter, led off and drew a walk. LeBlanc followed. After the two earlier at-bats, Coach Chris LeBlanc told his daughter to forget about the previous trips to the plate.

“I just told her to relax and do what you need to do and hit the ball,” Chris LeBlanc said. “We talked to them before the game and told them that it doesn’t matter what you do in the at-bats before. When you get up there, you get up there it’s 0-0 every time. You have to put the last at-bats behind you.”

LeBlanc’s drive to right found the gap and rolled to the wall, not unlike Wood’s hit that won the game two years ago. Wood watched it as she took off from first and knew she was running once again.

“As soon as she hit it and I could see where it was, I knew I was going to get home.” Wood said.

Erin Whalen followed with a sacrifice fly to left to score LeBlanc to make it 3-1.

“Aly’s a great player,” Carrier said. “That pitch she hit was kind of sick. It was way outside but she went with it.”

Bucksport had one more try in the seventh but Wood put the Bucks down in order. Whitney Bess made a pair of plays at third and got the final outs.

“I felt like we had the momentum,” Wood said. “So we just needed to get the quick outs. I was shaking. I was nervous but I knew we could do it.”

Madison took the lead in the third when Aishah Malloy led off with a triple. She scored on a Kayla Bess fielder’s choice.

“A lot of kudos to her,” Chris LeBlanc said of Malloy. “She’s a sophomore. She didn’t start the season coming back from Florida. She was the 10th player and continued to work hard. She took every at-bat and wanted to do the extra things.”

Bucksport got its first hit in the fourth when Eliza Hosford singled. Jellison reached on a bunt hit, but Madison limited the damage. Saunders singled in Hosford to tie it, but the Bucks stranded a runner.

“”She did nothing different,” Carrier said. “We just started hitting the ball a little bit. We’d been watching the ball.”

Wood got a pair of strikeouts and a fly out to Whitney Bess at third to escape the threat.

“They’re a good team and they’re always going to put runners on the basses and scores on the board,” Wood said. “You just have to keep your composure and know you’re going to get it back and you’ve just got to keep calm.”

Madison graduates just three players — Kayla Bess, Whalen and Aly LeBlanc. Bucksport graduates four — Kaylee Grindle, Tyler Dupont, Hosford and Julia Zavalza.

“We do have a really good group of sophomores and a couple of really good freshmen,” Carrier said. “We’re going to miss our seniors terribly. They’re the core of our team, but we have some good kids coming back.”

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