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Yarmouth standout Luke Laverdiere wins the senior 800 at last week’s regular season-ending league indoor track meet. The Clippers were fifth as a team.
Freeport’s Jessie Driscoll drives on a Wells defender during the Falcons’ 60-41 home win Monday night.
Falmouth freshman goalie Sam Kidder makes a save during the Yachtsmen’s 4-1 win over Lewiston Saturday in a rematch of last year’s state final.
Greely’s Bridget Roberts skates up the ice during last week’s 7-5 loss to two-time defending state champion St. Dom’s.
(Ed. Note: For the complete Freeport-Wells girls’ basketball, Falmouth-Lewiston boys’ hockey and Greely-St. Dom’s girls’ hockey game stories, with photos, see theforecaster.net)
The regular season is winding down in basketball and hockey and the postseason is set to begin in the other sports.
There will be a lot of drama in store and plenty of hardware handed out in the weeks to come.
Here’s a glimpse at the week that was and a look ahead:
The basketball regular season culminates Thursday and Greely’s boys’ squad will again be the top seed in Class A South.
The Rangers improved to 16-0 and extended their two-year win streak to 38 games after downing visiting Cape Elizabeth (68-53) and Yarmouth (55-25) last week. Zach Brown had 17 points and Jack Kane added 16 in the win over the Capers. Against the Clippers, Shane DeWolfe led the way with 17 points and Jordan Bagshaw added 13. Greely was at York Tuesday and closes with a game at Fryeburg Academy Thursday.
Falmouth improved to 9-7 and fourth in Class A South after wins last week at Marshwood (58-47) and Bonny Eagle (40-30). Sam Manganello scored 22 points in the win over the Hawks. Manganello and Nik Hester both had 10 points against the Scots. The Yachtsmen were at Westbrook Tuesday and close at home versus Kennebunk Thursday.
In Class B South, Yarmouth began the week second to Wells in the Heal Points standings with a 10-6 mark following a 57-35 home win over Lake Region and a 55-25 setback at Greely. Nolan Hagerty had 15 points and Ashanti Haywood added 14 in the victory. In the loss, Hagerty and Noah Eckersley-Ray each had six points. After going to Poland Tuesday, the Clippers finish the regular season at Lake Region Thursday.
Freeport is closing in on its first playoff berth in a decade. Last week, the Falcons defeated visiting York (66-55) and Lake Region (57-44) to snap a two-game skid and improve to 9-7 and eighth in Class B South. Toby Holt stole the show against the Wildcats with a 35-point performance. Ethan Sclar added 11. In the win over the Lakes, Eriksen Shea led the way with 17 points, while Holt added 14. Freeport (ranked eighth in Class B South with a 9-7 record) went to defending regional champion Wells Tuesday and closes the year at home versus Gray-New Gloucester Thursday. If the Falcons wind up eighth or ninth, they’ll play in a preliminary round tournament game next week. If they move up to seventh, they’ll go directly to the quarterfinals.
In Class C South, North Yarmouth Academy fell to 4-12 and 12th after a 50-47 home loss to Buckfield. Te’Andre King had 29 points and 12 rebounds in defeat. Only 11 teams make the playoffs in the region, so the Panthers have work to do to qualify. After hosting Sacopee Valley Tuesday, NYA visits Waynflete Thursday in the finale.
The postseason begins next week with preliminary round games held on the home courts of the higher seeds.
On the girls’ side, all five local teams are still in the running for the playoffs.
Greely has the inside track for the number one seed in Class A South after extending its win streak to 10 games and improving to 14-2 with a 71-28 win at Cape Elizabeth last Tuesday. Anna DeWolfe led the way with 21 points. After hosting York Tuesday, the Rangers close at home versus Fryeburg Academy Thursday.
Falmouth was 4-12 and clinging to the ninth and final playoff spot in the region at press time after losses last week to visiting Marshwood (42-28) and Bonny Eagle (51-26). In the loss to the Hawks, Allie Cunningham and Grace Dimick both had eight points. Against the Scots, Grace Soucy led the way with eight points. The Yachtsmen hosted Westbrook Tuesday and close the regular season at Kennebunk Thursday.
In Class B South, Freeport takes a 14-3 record and the top spot in the Heals into Thursday’s finale at defending Class B champion Gray-New Gloucester with a shot at the top seed. The Falcons dropped a 46-45 decision at York last Tuesday, then continued their most successful season in a generation with victories over host Lake Region (59-47) and visiting Wells (60-41). Allie Goodman had 12 points and Jessie Driscoll 10 in the setback. Against the Lakers, Goodman had 22 points and Caroline Smith added 18. In the win over the Warriors, in front of a huge crowd on Senior Night, Goodman led the way with 24 points and 10 rebounds, while Driscoll added 16 points and seven boards.
“We wanted to pull away and make a statement that we’re a contender,” Driscoll said. “We came out with a big win. It was unbelievable to play in this atmosphere. You make a basket and everyone lights up, it’s just incredible.”
“We wanted to close out the game and keep pushing hard in transition and look for open shots, execute on our cuts and make plays down the stretch,” Goodman said. “It was a very emotional night.”
“Tonight was a big test in front of a big crowd,” Freeport coach Mike Hart added. “It was a tournament atmosphere. I was very impressed. The kids didn’t worry about the crowd. They weren’t afraid of the limelight. We didn’t lose our composure.”
Yarmouth was 5-11 and clinging to the ninth and final playoff seed in B South at press time following a 33-32 overtime loss at Old Orchard Beach last Wednesday. Clementine Blaschke had 14 points for the Clippers, who hosted Poland Tuesday and close at home versus nemesis Lake Region Thursday.
In Class C South, NYA improved to 10-6 and seventh in the region after extending its win streak to four by downing visiting Buckfield (57-31) and host St. Dom’s (60-52) last week. Against the Bucks, Helen Hamblett had 16 points, while Lincoln Hamblett and Maggie Larson added 10 points apiece. In the win over the Saints, Larson had 21 points, while Helen Hamblett and Katie Larson both added 14.
“The girls tonight did a great job of focusing and I think it paid off,” said NYA first-year coach Nick Stacey. “We sat down and looked at the film and made the adjustments we thought we needed to make and sometimes they work and sometimes they don’t, but tonight they worked.”
The Panthers were home with Sacopee Valley Tuesday and close at Waynflete Thursday. NYA is seeking its first trip to Augusta for the quarterfinals since the 2003-04 season.
The postseason begins next week with preliminary round games held on the home courts of the higher seeds.
Greely’s boys’ hockey team saw its nine-game win streak come to a close last Wednesday with a 3-2 home loss to Gorham (Matt Kramlich and Andy Moore had goals), but Saturday, the Rangers improved to 10-2 and first in Class B South after a 6-2 win at top Class A South contender Biddeford. Kramlich and Jake MacDonald both scored twice. Greely was at Maranacook Tuesday, visits Gardiner Saturday, then hosts Scarborough Tuesday of next week.
Yarmouth won at Brunswick (5-1) and settled for a 3-3 home tie versus Cape Elizabeth last week. In the win, Cooper May had two goals, while John Decker, Matt Sanborn and Joe Truesdale had one apiece. Against the Capers, Decker, Truesdale and Dom Morrill tickled the twine. The Clippers (6-4-2 and fourth in Class B South) went to Edward Little Wednesday, visit Kennebunk Thursday and welcome Camden Hills Saturday.
In Class A South, Falmouth got a measure of revenge from last year’s state final loss with a 4-1 home victory over two-time defending state champion Lewiston Saturday. Theo Hembre had a hat trick and freshman goalie Sam Kidder made 20 saves to help the Yachtsmen improve to 9-5-1 and third in the region.
“It’s been a little nervewracking, but I have the team by my side,” said Kidder. “The defenseman play a huge role. I couldn’t have done it without them.”
“We came out and played defense first,” Hembre said. “Coach made that our mindset. We came out and executed.”
“It’s one of those traditional high school hockey rivalries,” added Falmouth coach Deron Barton. “They love playing us, we love playing them. Our kids love playing each other. It’s always a game where anyone can win.”
The Yachtsmen hosted Cheverus Tuesday in a regional final rematch, go to Cheverus Thursay, then close the regular season Saturday at home versus St. Dom’s.
Greely’s girls’ hockey team (which includes one player from Gray-New Gloucester) had a busy final week of the regular season. Last Tuesday, the Rangers handled visiting Yarmouth/Freeport, 7-1, behind a hat trick from Courtney Sullivan. Two nights later, Greely hosted two-time defending champion St. Dom’s and in a wild contest, never could quite catch up en route to a 7-5 loss. Sullivan did score three times and Dani Holt added two goals, but it wasn’t enough.
“We wanted to come out on top, but it was great competition,” said Rangers coach Nate Guerin. “(St. Dom’s is) a strong team. It was fun.”
Greely then went to St. Dom’s for a makeup game to end the regular season Friday and came out on top, 4-1, behind two goals from Bridget Roberts.
“We just saw them before the game unveiling their state championship banner and they’ve kicked us out of playoffs my last two years and we have a huge rivalry with them and we have never been so fired up for a game,” Roberts said.
Greely wound up 15-3 and third in the North Region. The Rangers hosted No. 6 Edward Little/Leavitt/Poland (4-13-1) in a quarterfinal round game Wednesday night. Greely won both regular season meetings, 11-1 at home and 8-2 in Auburn. A victory would send the Rangers back to St. Dom’s for the semifinals Friday.
Falmouth is also playoff-bound. The Yachtsmen finished sixth in the South Region with a 6-11-1 record following a 3-1 home loss to Brunswick, a 6-5 victory at Cape Elizabeth/Waynflete/South Portland and a 3-0 home loss to Lewiston. In the victory, Abi Lebel and Sarah Wentworth both scored two goals. Falmouth went to third-ranked Cape Elizabeth/Waynflete/SP (9-8-1) for the quarterfinals Wednesday. An upset win would send the Yachtsmen to No. 2 Portland/Deering (13-5) for the semifinals Saturday.
Yarmouth/Freeport finished 3-13-2 and seventh in the North Region, but only six teams made the playoffs. Yarmouth/Freeport closed with a 7-1 loss at Greely and a 4-4 home tie against Cape Elizabeth/Waynflete/SP.
Looking ahead, the regional final will be held Wednesday, Feb. 14 in Lewiston.
The state final is Saturday, Feb. 17 in Lewiston.
The final Western Maine Conference regular season indoor track meets were held last weekend.
Freeport’s boys won an eight-team meet where Yarmouth placed fifth. The Falcons got wins from Brett Holden in the junior 55 (7.26 seconds), Jacob Gormely in the junior 200 (25.23) and Nick Mitch in the senior 400 (54.43). The Clippers got first-place performances from Michael McNeil in the junior shot put (39 feet-9 inches), Wyatt Bates in the senior high jump (5-6) and open long jump (18-00.25), Luke Laverdiere in the open 800 (2 minutes, 00.92 seconds) and Chris Koskinen in the open pole vault (9-6).
In the girls’ meet, won by Gray-New Gloucester, Freeport came in fourth and Yarmouth was sixth. The Falcons got wins from Shaina Curry in the junior 55 (10.82) and junior high jump (4-8) and Maya Bradbury in the open mile (5:27.62). Paige Reindfelder won the open pole vault for the Clippers (8-6).
In the other meet, Greely’s girls were first in a seven-team meet. The Rangers got wins from Skylar Cooney in the senior 55 hurdles (9.73), Elizabeth Brown in the senior high jump (5-0) and open long jump (15-00.50), Marin Provencher in the open 800 (2:36.94) and open mile (5:27.60), Julia Curran in the open two-mile (12:19.10), Maggie McCormick in the open pole vault (9-3), Maddy Irish in the open triple jump (31-3.25) and their senior 4×200 relay team (1:56.77).
In the boys’ meet, won by York, Greely was second and NYA came in sixth. The Rangers got wins from Michael Geary in the open 200 (24.57), Matthew Todd in the open 800 (2:03.49), Luke Marsanskis in the open mile (4:44.24) and open two-mile (10:10.51), and their senior 4×200 relay (1:40.03). The Panthers got a victory from Jack Sillin in the senior shot put (37-6.25).
Next up is the Western Maine Conference meet Friday in Gorham.
Falmouth’s regular season is over and it will take part in the SMAA championship meet Saturday in Gorham.
The Class B state meet will be contested Saturday, Feb. 17 at Bates College in Lewiston.
The Class A state meet is Monday, Feb. 19, in Gorham.
In the pool, Greely’s girls edged Cony, 88-82, winning the meet in the final event, the 400 freestyle relay, by two-tenths of a second. The Rangers boys also beat the Rams, a little less dramatically, 87-76. Greely then closed the regular season by sweeping Bonny Eagle, with the boys prevailing, 44-25, and the girls winning, 66-30.
Falmouth closed by sweeping Waynflete, as the boys prevailed, 78-38, and the girls won by a 105-51 score.
Yarmouth’s girls defeated Maine Girls’ Academy, 95-44.
Next up will be the Southwestern meets, this weekend in Cape Elizabeth.
The Class A boys’ state meet is Saturday, Feb. 17 in Orono. The Class A girls’ state meet is Monday, Feb. 19 in Orono. That same day, the Class B girls’ state meet will be contested at Bowdoin College in Brunswick. The Class B boys’ state meet is Tuesday, Feb. 20 in Brunswick.
The Maine Coast Waldorf boys won a Nordic classical race last week at Stark’s Hill. Falmouth placed second, Yarmouth was third, Freeport fourth and Greely eighth. MCW’s Nick Neveu was second individually with a time of 14 minutes, 2.2 seconds. Ethan Livingood paced the Yachtsmen with a fourth-place showing (14:25.3). The Falcons were led by John Giddens (10th, 15:03.3). The Clippers’ top finisher was Kendrick Langenbach (11th, 15:10.6). The Rangers were led by Evan Goettel (22nd, 16:12.0).
In the girls’ meet, Yarmouth was first, MCW second, Freeport third and Falmouth sixth. The Clippers produced first-place individual Sophia Laukli (14:42.9). MCW was paced by runner-up Olivia Skillings (15:33.8). The Falcons’ top finisher was Lily Horne (third, 16:01.9). The Yachtsmen were paced by Eva Clement (15th, 17:33.3). Greely didn’t score as a team, but Grace Ruszkai had the 46th-best time (22:24.7).
On the Alpine side, Yarmouth’s girls won a giant slalom meet at Shawnee Peak last week. Greta Elder was the top individual (1 minute, 4.43 seconds). Greely came in second and was led by Elizabeth Hanson (third, 1:09.09). Freeport placed sixth. Its top finisher was Isabella St. Cyr (12th, 1:14.18).
In the boys’ meet, won by Cape Elizabeth, Yarmouth was runner-up (Alex Hall was fourth individually in 1:06.17), Greely placed third (Alexander Richard was the second-place individual, 1:03.40) and Freeport came in fifth (Parker Landsbergen was sixth, 1:07.28).
The SMAA Alpine and WMC Alpine and Nordic championships are being held this week.
The state meets begin Monday, Feb. 19.
Sun Journal staff writers Wil Kramlich and Adam Robinson contributed to this story.