Another spring sports season has come and gone and it’s safe to say that the events of April, May and June 2016 won’t soon be forgotten.
On the diamond, Freeport produced the best baseball season in program history and its unexpected ride to the Class B state final was bolstered by an inspiring fan turnout. Falmouth also got to states, in Class A, behind a dominant pitching duo. Greely was a victim of the Falcons in the semifinals, as its two-year title run ended. Yarmouth lost to the Rangers the round before. North Yarmouth Academy got to the playoffs as well, but fell in the quarterfinals.
Greely’s softball team ended Yarmouth’s title reign in the semifinals and got to the regional final where it dropped a heartbreaker.
Boys’ lacrosse produced a champion in Falmouth, which shocked Cape Elizabeth in the regional final before knocking off Yarmouth in the Class B state game. The Clippers had eliminated NYA in the quarterfinals.
On the girls’ side, Yarmouth came close to a three-peat, but lost a close state final to Kennebunk. The Clippers had beaten Freeport in the quarterfinals. Falmouth got back to the Class B South Final, thanks to a close semifinal round win over Greely, but for the second year in a row, the Yachtsmen were frustrated by Kennebunk.
The state track meet saw several individuals excel and Falmouth’s girls win a championship for the first time in Class A and the first time in 25 years in any class.
Falmouth’s girls’ tennis team won its ninth successive state championship. Falmouth’s boys weren’t able to win a third in a row, losing to Thornton Academy in the regional final. Freeport’s boys, Greely’s girls and both NYA and Yarmouth teams also qualified for the postseason.
Before we savor summer, here’s one last look at the spring of 2016:
Falmouth Yachtsmen boys’ lacrosse, Class B
Falmouth Yachtsmen girls’ outdoor track, Class A
Falmouth Yachtsmen girls’ tennis, Class A
Falmouth Yachtsmen baseball, Class A South
Freeport Falcons baseball, Class B South
Yarmouth Clippers boys’ lacrosse, Class B North
Yarmouth Clippers girls’ lacrosse, Class B North
Julia Brogan, Falmouth, girls’ singles
Adelaide Cooke, Falmouth, Class A girls’ discus
Adelaide Cooke, Falmouth, Class A girls’ shot put
Chandler Vincent, Freeport, Class B boys’ two-mile
Siana Emery, Greely, Class B girls’ racewalk
Emma Egan, Yarmouth, Class B girls’ high jump
Tahj Garvey, Yarmouth, Class B boys’ 400
Abby Hamilton, Yarmouth, Class B girls’ two-mile
Luke Laverdiere, Yarmouth, Class B boys’ 800
Luke Laverdiere, Yarmouth, Class B boys’ mile
Anneka Murrin, Yarmouth, Class B girls’ mile
Greely’s softball team was as good as anyone in the league this season and after a strong 13-3 campaign, turned it up a notch for the playoffs. The Rangers started the postseason by downing perennial contender Fryeburg Academy in the quarterfinals. Greely then went to Yarmouth, which knocked it out of the playoffs in 2014 and 2015, and behind the arm and booming grand slam bat of pitcher Kelsey Currier, ended the Clippers’ title reign in surprisingly decisive fashion. The Rangers then took a 2-0 lead over top-ranked York in the regional final, but the Wildcats battled back to go ahead, 3-2. Down to its final strike, Greely rose off the deck to tie the score, but in the bottom of the seventh, York scored a run to end the Rangers’ season in heartbreaking fashion.
Falmouth’s baseball team won its first 19 games this year and got to the Class A state final for the first time for several reasons, but the first and foremost reason was the Yachtsmen’s brilliant pitching, which was spearheaded by its two southpaw junior aces, Reece Armitage and Cam Guarino. After Falmouth went a perfect 16-0 in the regular season, the tandem’s excellence was never more evident than in the postseason, as Guarino got things started with a one-hitter against Deering in the quarterfinals, Armitage followed by one-hitting Portland in the semifinals and Guarino, despite giving up a couple unearned runs, allowed just one hit in a victory over South Portland in the regional final. The Yachtsmen finally ran into a superior ace in the state game, when Bangor’s Trevor DeLaite proved too tough and Falmouth’s only loss came at the worst possible time.
Falmouth’s girls’ tennis team continues to reside in a stratosphere of its own, even under a new coach this spring in Bill Goodspeed. The Yachtsmen once again enjoyed an undefeated regular season and had no peer in Class A, winning the state title for the ninth straight season, making it a mindboggling 141 consecutive match wins in succession in the process. The names and faces come and go, but Falmouth just wins and wins. Don’t be surprised if the numbers 10 and 157 are in vogue this time next year.
Falmouth’s boys’ lacrosse team won nine of its first 10 games this spring, then lost at Kennebunk and suffered an eight-goal defeat at home at the hands of rival Cape Elizabeth. That’s not the way a team wants to enter the playoffs, but the Yachtsmen found a way to bounce back, rallying from a halftime deficit to edge Kennebunk in the semifinals, then going to Cape Elizabeth and handing the Capers their first-ever postseason loss in a memorable regional final. That win sent Falmouth to its first state final since 2012, where the Yachtsmen met up with Yarmouth in a historic meeting (the first time the rival schools had met in a state game in any sport). There, Falmouth wasn’t about to be denied, as it grabbed a quick 5-0 lead and went on to a 13-9 victory, securing the third state title in program history, one that seemed impossible a mere week before.
At the midway point of the baseball season, Freeport was 3-5 and there wasn’t a soul in Freeport or anywhere else that could have dreamed what was about to transpire. The Falcons then hit their stride, winning seven straight games, including triumphs over two-time defending Class B champion Greely and top contender York. Even with the second half resurgence, Freeport only earned the No. 7 seed for the Class B playoffs and most felt one postseason win would serve as a punctuation mark to the best season in decades. Instead, the Falcons set the bar so high their run became the stuff of legend. Freeport indeed won its first playoff game, a preliminary round tilt against Morse, marking the first time since 1985 that the Falcons had won in the postseason. The fun was just beginning. Next, Freeport won at York in the quarterfinals, then shocked the world by ending Greely’s reign in the semifinals. As the Falcons kept winning, the crowds kept growing and there was a huge cheering section at St. Joseph’s College for the regional final against top-ranked Cape Elizabeth. Freeport wasn’t ready to go home and upset the Capers, 3-1, to win a regional championship for the first time. When the Falcons took a quick 2-0 lead against Old Town in the Class B state final in Bangor, it appeared that this story would have the happiest of endings, but midnight finally struck for this Cinderella, as the Coyotes scored 12 unanswered runs to bring the curtain down. Regardless, Freeport and its fan base will be talking about the events of this June 30 years from now and probably much longer than that.
Freeport’s baseball team enjoyed a series of celebrations earlier this month, winning a regional championship for the first time, stealing headlines along the way.
Goalie Mary Kate Gunville and her Yarmouth girls’ lacrosse teammates got back to the Class B state final this spring.
Lydia Farmer and her Falmouth outdoor track and field teammates soared to a first-ever Class A state title this season.