Another fantastic year of high school sports action is over.
Local athletes kept us riveted last winter, dazzled in the spring and enthralled in the autumn.
With a new year nearing, here’s one more look back to the thrills that made up 2010.
When 2009 gave way to 2010, the Cape Elizabeth and South Portland boys’ basketball teams were unbeaten, with Scarborough close behind. Both would continue to succeed in the first month of the new year
On the girls’ side, Scarborough was passing every test as the best team in program history was gearing up to make history. Cape Elizabeth and South Portland were also in the playoff hunt.
On the ice, South Portland was enjoying a special season, while Cape Elizabeth and Scarborough were scrambling to make the postseason. The Red Storm girls’ team was also quite formidable.
Skiing, swimming, trackg and wrestling teams and individuals made a mark as they geared up for the postseason.
February vacation week brought the first hardware of the new year.
On the 15th, Scarborough’s girls’ indoor track team won another championship. Cape Elizabeth produced three individual winners as Leandre Some won the boys’ triple jump, Kelsey Barton took home the girls’ mile title and Rachel Nichols won the two-mile.
In the pool, both Scarborough teams were runners-up in Class A. The Red Storm produced individual champs in Laura Flewelling (girls’ 200 and 500 freestyle), Kip Gravel (boys’ 100 free) and Robby Gravel (boys’ breaststroke and 100 free).
On the slopes, Cape Elizabeth’s Emily Atwood was the Class B champion in the Nordic classic and freestyle.
Attention then turned to the basketball championships.
On the boys’ side, two-time defending Western B champion Cape Elizabeth got back to the regional final, but this time met its match in eventual titlist Falmouth. In Western A, Scarborough finally got to the Expo and the quarterfinals, but amid the hoopla surrounding the unexpected return of Cheverus standout Indiana Faithfull, lost to the eventual champion Stags. South Portland made it to the semifinals, but dropped an epic overtime decision to Westbrook.
Cape Elizabeth’s girls got to the preliminary round, but lost in double overtime to Falmouth. South Portland was ousted in the quarterfinals by Scarborough, which went on to rally past Biddeford in the semifinals and two-time defending champion Deering in the regional final. The program’s first state title came with relative ease as the Red Storm blew past Skowhegan.
Hockey’s playoffs saw Scarborough’s boys ousted in the quarterfinals. South Portland made it to the semifinals for the first time in program history. On the girls’ side, the Red Storm lost in the semis.
Locals took a between-seasons rest, while many standouts were named to conference, regional and state all-star teams.
April and May
The short spring regular season featured better-than-expected weather and many teams in contention.
The Cape Elizabeth, Scarborough and South Portland baseball teams were all in the playoff hunt.
Defending Class A champion Scarborough and South Portland emerged as the top two softball teams in the region. Cape Elizabeth, despite a massive roster turnover, stayed in the race.
Boys’ lacrosse featured South Portland getting off to the best start in program history. Cape Elizabeth and Scarborough started slowly, but soon hit their stride.
On the girls’ side, Scarborough was perfect, while Cape Elizabeth and South Portland stayed competitive.
Area track stars geared up for the postseason.
The tennis story featured several strong performances.
On the 5th, Scarborough’s girls’ outdoor track team joined the indoor squad as Class A champion, thanks in part to an individual win from Nicole Kirk (200).
On the 12th, Cape Elizabeth’s boys’ tennis team returned to the top after several years and won the Class B championship.
On the diamond, South Portland was ousted in the Western A quarterfinals by Westbrook. Scarborough fell in the same round to Biddeford. In Western B, Cape Elizabeth defeated Oak Hill in the quarterfinals, outlasted defending champion Greely in the semifinals, then held off Yarmouth to win the regional title. The Capers were denied a state title, however, by Waterville.
Cape Elizabeth’s softball team just missed the playoffs. Scarborough and South Portland advanced to the regional final, where the Red Riots’ bats came alive and they sprung an upset, 5-2. South Portland then defeated Bangor, 1-0, to win its first Class A championship.
All three boys’ lacrosse teams entered the playoffs with high hopes. South Portland’s title dreams were dashed in the semifinals with a loss to Scarborough. The Red Storm went on to win their third Class A crown in five seasons, upsetting Portland in the finale. Cape Elizabeth rode the momentum of a late-season win over Yarmouth and rallied to stun top-ranked Falmouth in the regional final. At states, the Capers held off the Clippers by a goal to win it all for the first time since 2005.
Cape Elizabeth’s girls lost to Falmouth in the Western B semifinals. In Western A, South Portland fell in the quarterfinals, but Scarborough had no trouble until getting a scare from Gorham in the regional final. The Red Storm won that one by a goal in overtime, then beat Mt. Ararat in the state game for their second championship.
July and August
High school action took a short break, while familiar names competed in road races and American Legion ball. By mid-August, fall practice was underway.
Autumn brought football, soccer, field hockey, cross country, volleyball and golf excitement.
On the gridiron, one of the most exciting seasons ever began with Cape Elizabeth defending a regional championship, South Portland looking to end a playoff drought and Scarborough soaring into contention under new coach Lance Johnson.
On the pitch, the two-time Class A champion Scarborough’s boys’ soccer team extended its three-year win streak to 40 games before losing to Gorham on the 16th. South Portland produced its best squad in a generation and Cape Elizabeth was once again very strong.
On the girls’ side, Scarborough stole the headlines by not only winning every game, but by not surrendering a goal in the process. Cape Elizabeth and South Portland also vied for a postseason berth.
The defending Class A champion Scarborough field hockey team rose to the top again, while Cape Elizabeth boasted a winning record and South Portland overcame an 0-4 start to upset Cheverus and return to prominence.
Several local cross country teams and runners hinted at greatness to come.
Scarborough’s volleyball team was playoff-bound again.
Cape Elizabeth, Scarborough and South Portland’s golf teams all had their eyes on qualifying for the state match.
Golf held its state championship on the 9th. Scarborough placed sixth in Class A. Cape Elizabeth was seventh in Class B.
Scarborough’s boys’ cross country team won Class A on the 30th. Nick Morris was the individual boys’ champion. Cape Elizabeth’s girls’ reign came to an end in Class B.
The field hockey playoffs saw Cape Elizabeth ousted in a high-scoring affair at Greely in the Western B quarterfinals. In Western A, South Portland, which upset Scarborough on the 2nd, snapping the Red Storm’s 26-game win streak, couldn’t win a playoff game, losing to Thornton Academy in the quarterfinals. Scarborough took care of Massabesic in the quarterfinals, but was upset by Cheverus in the semis.
The soccer playoffs saw the Scarborough boys stunned in the quarterfinals (on penalty kicks) by Kennebunk. South Portland also lost in that round, at Gorham. Cape Elizabeth dispatched Marshwood in the quarterfinals and was on the verge of advancing to its first regional final in eight years in the semifinals, but host Portland rallied late to tie, then ended the Capers’ fine season in overtime.
On the girls’ side, Cape Elizabeth beat Deering in a preliminary round contest, but was ousted by Scarborough in the quarterfinals. The Red Storm went on to beat Cheverus in the semis (surrendering their only goal of the whole season, on a PK).
Football saw all three local teams qualify. South Portland made its first postseason appearance in eight years, but lost at Bonny Eagle in the quarterfinals. Scarborough continue its best-to-date Class A campaign with a quarterfinal round win in Biddeford. In Western B, Cape Elizabeth, by virtue of a coin toss, made the playoffs yet again.
Soccer held its regional finals on the 3rd. Scarborough’s girls got a scare, but held off defending regional champion Thornton Academy. Three days later, Scarborough won Class A for the first time, easily downing Bangor, 3-0, capping a remarkable season without a goal surrendered in the normal run of play.
Football came to a close locally on the first weekend of the month when Cape Elizabeth lost in the Western B semifinals at Wells and Scarborough, despite a valiant effort, fell by a touchdown at eventual Class A champion Cheverus in the semifinal round.
Winter has returned and the fun begins again.
In boys’ basketball, Cape Elizabeth, Scarborough and South Portland are all off to solid starts.
On the girls’ side, South Portland is improved and Cape Elizabeth could be a big surprise.
On the ice, South Portland’s boys are playing a top tier schedule, but are holding their own. Scarborough and Cape Elizabeth will be heard from as the season progresses. Scarborough’s girls’ team will make a run at a title.
Swimming and wrestling provided positive glimpses and track and skiing are about to get underway.
Say goodbye to the wonderful year that was. We welcome 2011 and look forward to a new batch of thrills.
Happy New Year everyone!
Sports Editor Michael Hoffer can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
South Portland’s boys’ basketball team, led by its standout, Keegan Hyland, reached the semifinals last winter.
After five long years away from the pinnace, the Cape Elizabeth boys’ lacrosse team won it all in June.
Scarborough’s simply perfect girls’ soccer team won its first Class A championship in November.