LOWELL — Seventh-seeded Billerica knocked off top-seeded St. John’s Prep to win the Division 1 North title, 4-3, Sunday afternoon at LeLacheur Park.
Billerica coach Joe Higgins said a certain alum gave the Indians an extra push.
“I’ll tell you, we have an unknown person who came into our locker room and put on our bulletin board: ‘The spirit of Tommy Glavine is with you,’ ” said Higgins.
“We don’t know who did it, but I’ll tell you, I think his spirit was here today, and that was a great upset. The guys played great.”
Showing shades of Glavine was starter Chris Murphy. The junior threw six innings, striking out eight.
“He had a lot of strikeouts. He had a lot on the ball today,” said Higgins.
Billerica (18-4) did not waste time getting to Eagles starter Justin Snyder. The Indians grabbed two runs in the first three innings on an error and a Kyle Murphy RBI single.
The Eagles got on the board in the bottom half of the third inning, scoring twice to tie the game.
Snyder was chased in the fifth inning after Kyle Murphy hit an RBI double. The first reliever balked in Murphy, the eventual winning run.
“We pitched well, played great defense, and we just had enough to win by one,” said Higgins.
Billerica’s Robby Gambale pitched in with three scoreless innings in relief.
After beating Westford Academy on Saturday, Higgins said the Indians needed to play a perfect game to beat St. John’s Prep (22-2). After receiving the Division 1 North trophy and a Gatorade bath, he believes “perfect” is what he got.
“I really think we played a perfect game against a great team, and we had to beat them,” Higgins said. “[We had] timely hitting, great defense, and really good pitching. That’s the key to any sport, you’ve got to have good defense . . . I’ve got to give all the guys the credit. They did a spectacular job and they believed in themselves.”