STANDISH — Falmouth southpaw Cam Guarino knew he had to be as stingy as possible Wednesday if he wanted to pitch again in an even bigger game on Saturday.

The senior pounded the strike zone and left Cheverus no choice but to swing the bats. Much more often than not, those swings resulted in outs, and the Yachtsmen will have their ace available Saturday after all.

Guarino allowed just three hits, struck out three and let his defense take care of the rest in six dominating innings to give top-seeded Falmouth its second consecutive Class A South championship with a 4-1 win over second-seeded Cheverus at St. Joseph’s College’s Larry Mahaney Diamond.

“My goal for today was to just be efficient and get under 66 (pitches) so I’m eligible for the state championship game,” Guarino said. “I just found a groove and I just kept throwing.”

Under the new pitch count rules adopted by the Maine Principals’ Association this year, pitchers who throw 66-95 pitches in an outing are required three-days rest before their next appearance.

Guarino finished with 66 pitches, but because he was below the limit when he started his last batter, he will be eligible to pitch when the Yachtsmen face the winner of the A North championship game between Bangor and Mt. Ararat.

That last batter, Jared Brooks, drove in the Stags’ only run with an infield single deep in the hole at shortstop. Jack Casale, who was running on the pitch from second, rounded third and scored when shortstop Robert Armitage’s throw went wide of first, Falmouth’s only error.

Ironically, Armitage replaced Guarino on the mound and, after getting two outs, put the tying runs on base with an infield hit and walk. But he struck out Chandler Hartigan swinging to end it.

Falmouth (18-1) got a run in the second and two in the third off Cheverus starter Brooks — two coming via infield singles and one on a walk with the bases loaded walk. 

Max Fortier added an RBI double off Casale in the fourth to make it 4-0 Yachtsmen.

By then, Guarino was cruising on the mound. After allowing a harmless two-out single to Brooks in the first, he retired 16 in a row before Casale broke up the string with a single to lead off the seventh.

He needed only eight pitches to retire the side in both the second and third frames, and just seven pitches to get through the fourth.

“My two-seam was working real well today,” Guarino said. “They just couldn’t really get a clean hit on it, besides Jared Brooks. Getting a first-pitch strike is what matters. If you don’t get it, it kind of sets you back a little bit.”

Brooks had two hits to lead the Stags (17-2).


Only subscribers are eligible to post comments. Please subscribe or to participate in the conversation. Here’s why.

Use the form below to reset your password. When you've submitted your account email, we will send an email with a reset code.