Connor Calderwood’s RBI double with two outs in the bottom of the seventh inning Monday night capped off a two-run uprising that rallied Rock Coast Riptide of Rockport to the Junior American Legion baseball state championship with a 2-1 victory over the Ware-Butler Eagles of Oakland at Mansfield Stadium.

The dramatic victory concluded a remarkable tournament run for coach Barrrett Brown’s club, which lost its first game of the eight-team, double-elimination tournament but rebounded to win six consecutive games over four days to capture the championship.

That included two victories on both Saturday and Sunday, with Sunday’s late 7-4 victory over previously undefeated Ware-Butler forcing the winner-take-all contest.

“It wasn’t a great feeling,” said Calderwood of the opening-day loss, “but I knew this team could battle back.”

Rock Coast Riptide, a team of players from Oceanside, Camden Hills Regional High School of Rockport and Medomak Valley High School of Waldoboro, was held scoreless through six innings by Ware-Butler right-hander Aiden Rodgers and trailed 1-0 entering its final at-bat.

The champs got a runner aboard with one out in the bottom of the seventh when Lucas Moody reached on a throwing error after a third strike in the dirt. Pinch-runner Evan Fagonde stole second before Rodgers retired the next batter but in the process reached the 105-pitch limit and gave way to left-hander Jacob Thomas.

Fagonde came around to score the tying run without the ball leaving the infield, first advancing to third base on an infield hit by Cameron Brown and then scoring the tying run as Elias Libby beat out an infield hit to third base.

Calderwood then blasted a 1-0 pitch deep into the left-center field gap to drive home Brown with the championship-winning run.

“It felt amazing,” he said of the ensuing celebration. “Just the thrill of knowing the fact that I was the one that hit that walk-off and to see all my teammates come out was amazing.”

Calderwood also was a somewhat unlikely pitching hero for Rock Coast, throwing an ultra-efficient 69-pitch, complete-game five-hitter just 24 hours after aggravating a hip injury while batting Sunday and being forced to leave the game.

But some quick treatment — “I iced it, wrapped it and stretched it,” he said — left Calderwood ready to go in the championship game, which was especially important given that six other Rock Coast Riptide pitchers were ineligible for the game due to already having reached pitch-count limits.

The right-hander didn’t overpower Ware-Butler, striking out just one batter to go with one walk and one hit batter, but that wasn’t his plan.

“I was trying to pitch to contact knowing this team can hit the ball and that they were going to be very patient at the plate. I mainly went with the fastball and hoped for ground balls,” he said.

Ware-Butler capitalized on the defensive play of the game to score its lone run in the top of the third.

Brady Bumford led off with an infield hit toward second base and advanced to second thanks to an errant throw on the play.

Bumford moved to third on Braden Mayo’s flyout to center field, then tagged up and scored as Rock Coast left fielder Cameron Brown raced over to the left-field line and made a diving catch of Jacob Thomas’ pop-up in foul territory.

Bartlett finished with a double and a single while Calderwood singled twice to lead Rock Coast’s six-hit attack.

Rodgers struck out 11 batters and walked just two while yielding just three hits over his 6 2/3 innings on the mound for Ware-Butler.

Correction: A previous version of this story misidentified the Rock Coast Riptide of Rockland player who made the catch. It was left fielder Cameron Brown.

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Ernie Clark

Ernie Clark is a veteran sportswriter who has worked with the Bangor Daily News for more than a decade. A four-time Maine Sportswriter of the Year as selected by the National Sportscasters and Sportswriters...