When the Portsmouth High School baseball program moved from Class L to Class I after the 2005-06 season, there were those who insisted the Clippers shouldn’t have dropped a notch on the state’s athletic ladder. You can be sure there are plenty of Class I coaches who wish Portsmouth had stayed in place.
Top-seeded Portsmouth stretched its winning streak to 43 games by beating second-seeded St. Thomas 10-8 in Saturday’s Class I championship game. Portsmouth, which is 57-3 since it moved to Class I, became the first program to win back-to-back Class I championships since Goffstown in 2000-2001.
“I know a lot of people didn’t want us to be in Class I, but that’s reality,” Portsmouth coach Tim Hopley told the Portsmouth Herald. “Our enrollment places us here.”
Portsmouth, which finished 20-0, led 7-2 until St. Thomas scored six times in the top of the fifth. Portsmouth capped the scoring when first baseman Mike Montville hit a three-run home run that traveled more than 400 feet in the bottom half of the inning.
It was the 11th home run of the season for Montville, a junior who hit .532 and drove in 44 runs this season.
St. Thomas completed its season with a 17-3 record. All three losses came against Portsmouth.
Class L: An eight-run third inning propelled third-seeded Keene to a 9-4 triumph over fifth-seeded Alvirne in the Class L title game.
Alvirne, which beat Keene 6-2 during the regular season, finished 17-6. The Blackbirds ended 21-2.
Class M: Derrick Sylvester pitched a complete game to lead top-seeded Franklin to a 2-1 triumph over second-seeded Campbell in the Class I championship game.
Sylvester held Campbell to four hits, struck out seven and walked two. Franklin completed its season with a 19-1 record. Campbell finished 18-2.
Class S: Logan Chase broke a 1-1 tie by hitting a two-run home run in the sixth inning that carried seventh-seeded Pittsburg to a 3-1 victory over fourth-seeded Newmarket in the Class S championship game.
Pittsburg, which won its first state championship in any sport since 1986, completed its season with a 14-6 record. Eighth-grader Travis Chase held Newmarket to four hits. The Mules finished 16-3.
Softball: Franklin prevails again
No player was more dominant in the NHIAA softball postseason than Franklin’s Jen Dorval, a junior who pitched four shutouts in the Class M tournament.
Her final shutout came against sixth-seeded Campbell in the championship game. Franklin won its third consecutive title with a 1-0 victory.
Dorval struck out 15 and held Campbell to four hits. She also shut out Stevens, Hopkinton and Berlin in the tournament.
Fourth-seeded Franklin, which improved its record to 18-2, scored the game’s only run in the fifth inning, when Abby Kaplan walked and ended up scoring from third on a bunt by Kirsten McBey.
Campbell completed its season 15-5.
Class L: Junior Page Hansen, who has committed to play Division I softball at the University of Massachusetts, held fourth-seeded Dover to four hits as second-seeded Concord claimed its fifth Class L title with a 2-0 victory in Saturday’s championship game.
Concord completed its season 21-2. Dover finished 18-5.
Class I: A six-run first inning propelled Portsmouth to a 6-1 victory over Coe-Brown in the Class I title game. Portsmouth also beat Coe-Brown 6-1 in last year’s championship game.
Second-seeded Portsmouth finished 18-2 and held its opponents to 17 runs in those 20 games. Fourth-seeded Coe-Brown, which beat Portsmouth 5-2 and 4-3 during the regular season, ended with a 16-4 record.
Class S: Wilton-Lyndeborough’s 51-game winning streak ended with a 13-0 loss to second-seeded Colebrook in the Class S championship game.
Top-seeded Wilton-Lyndeborough finished 21-1. Colebrook, which has won five of the last seven Class S titles, raised its record to 18-3.