Freeport senior Kempton von Glinksy-Gregoire hits a double during the Class B baseball state championship game Saturday in Gorham. Ellsworth beat the Falcons, 3-2. Joe Phelan/Kennebec Journal

GORHAM — Freeport had come close before in its quest for a baseball state championship.

But never this close.

Leading by two runs and needing only two more outs to beat Ellsworth, Freeport’s previously sound defense suddenly unraveled. Two infield errors and a misplayed ball in the outfield opened the path to an improbable comeback for Ellsworth, resulting in a 3-2 victory for the Eagles Saturday afternoon at Ed Flaherty Field.

“It’s a hard way to go down,” said Freeport Coach Steve Shukie. “I can’t think of being in a situation that was any closer to a win than what happened there.”

The state title is Ellsworth’s second in three seasons. The Eagles (19-1) also beat Freeport in 2019, by a score of 2-0. Last spring, Freeport lost to Old Town in the state final, 12-2.

On Saturday, Freeport (16-5) seemed the more confident team, taking advantage of Ellsworth miscues to score unearned runs in the first and fifth innings.


Kempton von Glinsky-Gregoire doubled in his first at-bat and attempted a two-out steal of third. The throw beat him but glanced off the glove of Ellsworth third baseman Michael Palmer and into left field, allowing von Glinsky-Gregoire to score.

In the fifth, von Glinsky-Gregoire singled, stole second and scored on another two-out error – this time a grounder that scooted through the legs of shortstop Peter Keblinsky to make it 2-0.

Freeport pitcher Nathan Abbott, meanwhile, enjoyed stellar defense. He didn’t allow a runner to reach third base through six innings and opened the seventh with a strikeout, his third of the game. Shortstop Zane Aguiar turned a double play in the second after Ellsworth opened with a pair of singles – the only time Abbott appeared to be in any trouble.

“We did the job all game,” Shukie said. “Nathan pitched a great game. We tasted it. Had a chance to win and it didn’t happen.”

It was Palmer who started the Ellsworth comeback with a single to right. Dan Howie followed with a potential double-play grounder to Aguiar that instead took a high hop and left everyone safe.

Another grounder that might have ended the game instead caromed off another infielder, scoring Palmer to make it 2-1. Abbott responded with another strikeout, bringing up leadoff hitter Hunter Curtis.

After looking at a strike, Curtis stepped out of the box, took a deep breath, and knocked the next pitch into center field. In his haste to get to the ball, Freeport senior Blaine Cockburn lost his footing. Both runners scored and Curtis wound up on second base with Ellsworth suddenly ahead, 3-2.

“I did not want to end the season,” Curtis said. “He gave me a good pitch and I happened to hit it where it was thrown. That’s something I’ve struggled with this year, but I’m glad I did it in the biggest spot.”

Freeport wasn’t done yet. Abbott and Aaron Converse delivered two-out singles in the home seventh, but Keblinsky cleanly fielded a grounder and forced Converse at second base to end the game.

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