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Key games await Portland-area teams

Sports

Key games await Portland-area teams

Top teams square off consistently

With the spring sports season right around the corner, let's get a jump and take a peek at some of the most appetizing contests on the agenda.

Baseball
Deering, with a new coach, Mike Coutts, returns as Class A baseball champion and has the goods to do it again. The Rams will face several stern tests, however.

Home games with South Portland and Westbrook (in a rematch of last year's regional final) May 5 and 7 respectively, will provide Deering with an early barometer of how good it is. The Rams also visit Scarborough May 9, Cheverus five days later, and play host to Portland at Hadlock Field on May 21.

The Stags also have a new coach this season in Mac McKew. They will open at Westbrook on April 25. Cheverus also has road tests against Scarborough (April 30), South Portland (May 16) and Portland (May 26). The Stags host Westbrook in the regular season finale, June 3.

Continuing the theme, Portland has a new coach as well, Mike McCallum. He and the Bulldogs open April 25 at South Portland. They also go to Westbrook May 30. Portland hosts Scarborough May 7 and South Portland May 28.

Waynflete has high hopes in Class C this fall. The Flyers start April 27 at home against Traip. They also host NYA (May 6) and St. Dom's (May 8). Top road games include visits to NYA (May 6), Traip (May 13) and St. Dom's (May 29).

Softball
Turning to softball, where three of the four local teams have, you guessed it, new coaches, there are ample palpitating matchups.

Cheverus, now led by former assistant Amy McMullin, gets a huge test right out of the gate, when it hosts defending Class A state champion Biddeford April 24. The Stags also have home tests against South Portland (April 30), McAuley (May 6), and Gorham (May 26). Top road games take Cheverus to Portland (April 27), Bonny Eagle (May 4), Deering (May 14) and Scarborough (June 3).

Deering, with new coach Maggie Soule, who replaces longtime head man Tige Curran, opens April 24 at home versus Marshwood. The Rams also host Scarborough (May 4), Portland (May 8), and McAuley (May 18). Deering visits Gorham (April 27), Biddeford (May 6), and South Portland (May 11).

Portland, under new coach Dee Regan, is at South Portland to start the year, April 25. The Bulldogs also visit Scarborough June 1. Portland hosts McAuley May 1, Gorham May 20 and Biddeford May 29.

McAuley, which returns Danielle Salvaggio as coach, opens April 24 at home against Thornton Academy. The Lions also host Biddeford (April 29), South Portland (May 4), and Gorham (May 29). McAuley visits Scarborough (April 27).

Waynflete doesn't field a varsity softball team.

Boys' lacrosse
The boys' and girls' lacrosse schedules are as challenging as ever.

On the boys' side, Cheverus opens at Deering April 28. It plays at Portland May 5 and defending Western B champion Cape Elizabeth May 28. The Stags host NYA (May 2), defending Class B state champion Yarmouth (May 9), defending Class A champ Scarborough (May 20), and recent playoff nemesis Kennebunk (May 23).

In addition to hosting Cheverus, Deering also hosts Cape Elizabeth (May 9), NYA (May 22), and Yarmouth (May 30). The Rams are at Scarborough (May 2), Kennebunk (May 6) and go to Portland (May 26).

Portland opens at Greely April 28. The Bulldogs also visit Waynflete May 1, Cape Elizabeth May 16, Yarmouth May 18 and NYA May 29. They host Scarborough May 8, Kennebunk May 12 and Falmouth May 22.

In Western B, Waynflete is home against Windham in its opener April 28. South Portland comes to town May 22. The Flyers visit Freeport May 9, and go to NYA May 18.

Girls' lacrosse
On the girls' side, defending Class B state champion Waynflete doesn't have an easy road in its title defense. The Flyers open at home against York April 28. They also host Greely (May 11), Scarborough (May 12), Kennebunk (May 14) and NYA, in a championship game rematch (May 29). Waynflete visits Massabesic (May 5), Marshwood (May 8), Deering (May 19), Cape Elizabeth (May 21), Cheverus (May 26) and Yarmouth (June 1).

Cheverus has several key games at home, starting with its opener, April 28, against Marshwood. The Stags also host Scarborough (May 1), defending Western A champion Kennebunk (May 5), Deering (May 9) and defending Eastern B champion NYA (May 21). Cheverus visits Cape Elizabeth May 12, Greely May 15 and Yarmouth May 23.

Deering opens at home with Cape Elizabeth May 2. The Rams also host NYA (May 12), and Yarmouth (May 15). Deering is at Greely (May 5), Falmouth (May 23), Marshwood (May 29), Scarborough (June 1) and Kennebunk (June 3).

McAuley hosts Portland in its opener, April 28. The Lions are at South Portland June 1.

Portland's first home game is May 5 vs. Westbrook, in a playoff rematch. The Bulldogs also host South Portland May 19.

Track
The Southern Maine Activities Association outdoor track meet is May 30 at Scarborough. The Western Maine Conference championships are the same day at Yarmouth. The state meet is Saturday, June 6. Class A is at Thornton Academy. Class B competes at Mt. Desert Island. Class C goes in Bath.

Tennis
The tennis singles tournament begins May 16 and goes through June 1. The team tournament commences June 2.