MANCHESTER — Trevor Anibal was great, but Nolan Lincoln was a little bit better.
Lincoln pitched seven shutout innings to lead the Londonderry High School baseball team to a 1-0 triumph over Bedford on Monday night in the Division I championship game played at Northeast Delta Dental Stadium.
Lincoln, a junior, limited sixth-seeded Bedford (15-7) to four hits, struck out four and didn’t walk a batter. He threw 94 pitches.
“I think he was just prepared,” Londonderry coach Brent Demas said. “We’ve been talking about the mental side of it, and it’s very difficult to prepare for Nolan because he throws 84, 85, but he has three other pitches that he can throw in any count. And he throws strikes.”
Anibal pitched all six innings (72 pitches) for the Bulldogs. He allowed three hits and struck out seven.
Fourth-seeded Londonderry (19-5) scored the game’s only run in the fourth inning, when Sean Cavanaugh’s two-out single scored Nick Cote from second. Cote reached on a single and stole second. Reece Manor had Londonderry’s only other hit, a first-inning double.
An error and a single put Bedford runners on first and second with two outs in the seventh, but Londonderry recorded the final out on a force play at second.
“Made a couple mistakes in the batter’s box,” Bedford coach Billy Chapman said. “Missed some signs, but other than that it just came down to one bloop hit for them. That’s what it came down to.
“We let too many good pitches go by, and we got behind in counts. We knew what was coming most of the time, we just couldn’t execute.”
Third baseman Nick Douidi had two of Bedford’s four hits. Michael Pratte and Jarek Neikam also singled against Lincoln, who called this the best game he’s pitched.
“Really it was my fastball location,” he said. “I was able to hit inside, outside with great movement on the pitch. Given the circumstances I came through for my team and I really feel this is the best performance I’ve ever had personally.”
It was Londonderry’s first championship since 2014, when it beat Pinkerton 4-1 in the Division I championship game.
Bedford reached the Division I championship game for the fifth-consecutive season. The Bulldogs lost to Spaulding in 2015, beat Bishop Guertin in 2016 and lost to Exeter in 2017 and 2018.
“I had confidence in my defense all day,” Lincoln said. “That really helped me. I knew if I threw strikes they were going to make plays behind me. It was just a great win. I’ve never felt anything better. Great experience.”