Memorable week sets up stretch run-Southern edition

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Scarborough’s Julia Freeman battles for a rebound during the Red Storm’s 64-45 home win over Windham Saturday.

Scarborough’s Morgan Pratt makes a 3-point shot while his teammates cheer him on during the Red Storm’s 69-66 home upset win over two-time defending AA champion Portland Saturday.

Cape Elizabeth goalie Peter Haber makes a save during the Capers’ 4-1 home loss to Edward Little last week.

(Ed. Note: For the complete Scarborough-Portland and South Portland-Thornton Academy boys’ basketball, Scarborough-Sanford and Scarborough-Windham girls’ basketball and Cape Elizabeth-Edward Little boys’ hockey game stories, with photos, see theforecaster.net)

The past week featured its share of memorable, down-to-the-wire games which altered the standings entering the stretch run. With the regular season beginning to wind down, here’s a glimpse at where local teams stand:

Boys’ basketball

Scarborough’s boys’ basketball team continued its resurgence with a seismic victory last week. After downing visiting Massabesic last Friday, 61-45 (Nick Fiorillo had 24 points and Morgan Pratt added 14), the Red Storm hosted two-time defending Class AA champion Portland, a team they had never beaten in Scarborough, as well as a team riding a 15-game win streak.

It never reached 16.

The Red Storm fell behind early, 17-7, then went on a breathtaking 31-5 run behind a flurry of 3-pointers to lead, 38-26 at halftime. Not surprisingly, the Bulldogs rallied to lead, 51-47, but with the game on the line, Fiorillo hit a clutch 3 and Pratt made seven key fourth quarter free throws to help Scarborough eke out a palpitating 69-66 victory. Fiorillo led the way with 26 points, Pratt added 18 and Brian Austin contributed 15 off the bench.

“It was just contagious shooting,” said Pratt. “We’ve done that all year. We’ve been in tough spots, but we’ve come back. We didn’t want to lose at home. This year, we don’t feel there’s anyone who can beat us.”

“It was awesome, a lot of fun,” said Fiorillo. “This is obviously a big win for us, but we believe we can play with anybody. We came in with that mindset and played loose. Our momentum, along with the crowd, got us going. Our mental toughness kicked in and we were able to pull it out.”

“It means a lot to beat Portland,” added second-year Red Storm coach Phil Conley. “They’re such a great program. I’m really proud of my kids. They never gave up. We jumped out to a pretty good lead, then Portland came back like I knew they would. They’re the top team in the state for a reason, but I like how my kids responded.”

Scarborough then improved to 11-3 and first in the Class AA South Heal Points standings Tuesday after holding off host Sanford, 66-63. Fiorillo had 19 points and nine rebounds, Pratt added 14 points and Austin finished with 12. The Red Storm welcomed Kennebunk Thursday and play at Lewiston Tuesday.

South Portland was 8-3 and second in Class AA South at press time following a 54-42 win at Deering and a 76-64 loss at Thornton Academy last weekend. Noah Malone had 18 points and Connor Buckley added 13 in the victory. Against the Golden Trojans, the Red Riots fell behind by 14 after three quarters, then drew within six, but could get no closer and went down to defeat despite 26 points from Malone, 14 from Buckley and 11 from Riley Hasson. South Portland hosted Noble in a makeup game Wednesday, goes to Falmouth Friday, plays at Bonny Eagle Saturday (see theforecaster.net for game story) and is home with Edward Little Tuesday of next week.

Cape Elizabeth dropped close decisions at York (52-51) and Kennebunk (62-59) last weekend to fall to 7-4. Against the Wildcats, Finn Bowe had 21 points and Liam Jacobson added 13, but it wasn’t enough. In the loss to the Rams, Andrew Hartel scored 22 points, Bowe added 20 and Tanner Carpenter had 11. The Capers (first in Class B South) looked to snap a three-game skid when they went to Yarmouth for a makeup game Wednesday. Cape Elizabeth is home with Sacopee Valley Friday and Freeport Saturday, then plays at defending Class A champion Greely Tuesday of next week.

Greater Portland Christian School was 0-7 and 12th in Class D South heading into Thursday’s game at Pine Tree Academy. The Lions go to Forest Hills Saturday.

Girls’ basketball

On the girls’ side, South Portland remained undefeated heading into its twice weather delayed showdown at Maine Girls’ Academy Wednesday (see theforecaster.net for game story). The Red Riots improved to 11-0 after home wins last weekend over Deering (49-40) and Thornton Academy (55-46). Against the Rams, Meghan Graff had 18 points and Maggie Whitmore added 15. In the loss to the Golden Trojans, Graff led the way with 20 points and Whitmore contributed 15. South Portland (first in the Class AA South Heals) hosts Falmouth Friday, has a makeup game at Noble Monday and visits Edward Little Tuesday.

Scarborough extended its win streak to eight games and improved to 10-3 and second in the region after recent victories at Massabesic (52-27) and at home over Windham (64-45) and Sanford (58-30). Sophie Glidden had 17 points and Madison Blanche wound up with 15 at the Mustangs. In the win over the Eagles, the Red Storm broke it open in the second half and prevailed going away behind 21 points from Blanche, 13 from Glidden and a dozen off the bench from Julia Freeman.

“We knew in the locker room at halftime that our defense had to be better,” Blanche said. “We couldn’t give them second chance opportunities.”

“Coming off the bench, I knew in this game specifically, we needed to work on defense and that’s what I tried to do,” said Freeman.

“Compliments to (Windham), they made shots in the first half,” added Red Storm coach Mike Giordano. “We knew they had three kids who could attack and shoot and they did that in the first half. In the second half, they front-rimmed it and we rebounded better.”

Against the Spartans, Scarborough forced 27 turnovers and pulled away behind a 17-0 run. Glidden had a game-high 19 points.

“The first game of the season, we beat them by 40 and our coaches told us that they’ve gotten a lot better, so we knew they’d come at us,” Glidden said.

“The last couple games, our defense has been good in the second half,” said Giordano. “If we’re wearing teams down, great.”

The Red Storm went to Kennebunk Friday and host Lewiston Tuesday.

Cape Elizabeth was clinging to the ninth and final playoff spot in Class B South after a 43-33 home loss to York and a 42-35 home victory over Yarmouth. Brooke Harvey and Erin O’Rourke both had 10 points in the setback and each finished with 16 points in the victory. The Capers (5-7) go to Sacopee Valley Friday and Freeport Saturday, then host Greely Tuesday.

Boys’ hockey

Cape Elizabeth’s boys’ hockey team suffered its first loss last Thursday, falling to 9-1-1 with a 5-1 home setback to Edward Little. Phil Tarling had the lone goal.

“We were a complacent hockey team,” said Cape Elizabeth coach Matt Buotte. “We’ve said all along, the longer we go undefeated, the bigger the bulls-eye would get and apparently, we couldn’t handle the bulls-eye. That team wanted it more than us in all three zones. They wanted it more than us coming out of the locker room. Their locker room sounds like they won the Stanley Cup and our locker room sounds like a morgue.”

The Capers (second behind Greely in Class B South) hosted York Thursday and welcomes Cheverus Saturday (see theforecaster.net for game story).

In Class A South, the South Portland/Waynflete/Freeport co-op team was 6-5 and holding on to the sixth and final playoff spot in Class A South following 4-2 losses at Biddeford and 4-2 at home to Marshwood and a 9-3 home win over Kennebunk. Bradley McMains had three goals and Gus Lappin added two in the victory. The squad goes to Marshwood Wednesday and is home against Portland/Deering Saturday.

Scarborough fell to 2-9 and ninth in Class A South after a 4-0 loss at Portland/Deering Saturday. The Red Storm host Edward Little and former coach Norm Gagne Saturday and play host to Biddeford Wednesday of next week.

Girls’ hockey

On the girls’ side, perennial contender Scarborough is coming to life late in the season. The Red Storm have won three games in a row, capped by victories at Brunswick Saturday (5-1) and Cape Elizabeth/Waynflete/South Portland (3-0) Monday, to improve to 6-7-1 and fourth in the South Region. Lauren Topchik had two goals and Courtney Brochu one in the latter victory. Scarborough was at Lewiston Wednesday, hosts Edward Little/Leavitt Saturday and plays host to York Wednesday of next week.

The Cape Elizabeth/Waynflete/South Portland co-op team was 8-6 and third in the South Region after a 5-1 victory at York and a 3-0 home loss to Scarborough. The squad plays host to Cheverus/Kennebunk Saturday.

Indoor track

Scarborough’s boys’ indoor track team won another league meet last weekend, downing Thornton Academy, Kennebunk and Portland. The Red Storm got wins from Tommy Stratis in the junior 400 (55.19 seconds) and junior triple jump (37 feet, 1.25 inches), Salvator DeBenedetto in the junior long jump (18-2.5), Jacob Goff in the junior shot put (34-1.5), Jarret Flaker in the senior 55 (6.58), senior 55 hurdles (8.01) and senior 200 (22.7), Anthony Clavette in the senior high jump (6-2) and senior triple jump (39-4.25), Ben Hatch in the senior long jump (19-6), Noah Drapeau in the open 600 (1 minute, 18.21 seconds), Harrison Osborne in the open mile (4:51.90), Tristam Coffin in the open two-mile (10:01.73) and their junior 4×200 (1:45.81), senior 4×200 (1:34.60) and open 4×400 (3:51.22) relay teams.

The Scarborough girls were second to Thornton Academy and got first-place showings from Madison Marinko in the junior 200 (28.08) and junior long jump (15-7), Nina Greeley in the junior 400 (1:09.28), Ryanne Cox in the junior 800 (2:35.50), Emily Labbe in the junior 55 hurdles (8.83), Anna Gardner in the junior high jump (4-10) and open pole vault (9-6), Molly Murnane in the senior 55 (7.4), senior 200 (26.43) and senior 400 (1:00.30), Bethany Sholl in the open mile (5:28.88) and open two-mile (12:15.62),  and its 4×200 (1:59.19), senior 4×200 (1:52.40) and open 4×800 (11:13.56) relays.

South Portland’s girls were second to Noble in a four-team meet. The Red Riots got wins from Traci Francis in the junior 55 (8.05), Anna Folley in the junior 400 (1:04.72), Jordyn Hulsey in the junior high jump (13-4.25), Rebekah Hunnewell-Dunphe in the junior shot put (30-10.75), Juliana Selser in the open mile (5:15.94) and their junior 4×200 (2:01.67) relay.

South Portland’s boys’ team came in third behind Noble and Windham and got first-place showings from Nathaniel Ellington in the junior shot put (44-10) and Lionel Whitehead in the open 600 (1:26.91).

Cape Elizabeth took part in a nine-team WMC meet where the boys were runner-up to Greely and the girls placed third.

The Capers boys got wins from Tyler Rodenberg in the junior 55 hurdles (10.31), Max Patterson in the junior high jump (5-4), Joe Clancy in the junior shot put (36-11.75), Matthew Concannon in the senior 55 (7.01) and open triple jump (36-9.75) and Luc Houle in the senior shot put (40-10).

First-place female finishers included Jaya McClure in the junior 200 (28.64), Darcy Cochran in the junior 400 (1:04.70) and the junior 55 hurdles (8.53), Kristen Penley in the open long jump (16-0) and the junior 4×200 (1:56.77) relay.

Scarborough battled Falmouth, Westbrook and Windham and South Portland took on Cheverus, Deering and Portland in SMAA regular season-ending meets Thursday. Cape Elizabeth takes on Freeport, Gray-New Gloucester, Greely, Lake Region and North Yarmouth Academy Friday.

Swimming

Cape Elizabeth swept Scarborough in a swim meet last weekend, as the boys prevailed, 495-339, and the girls won, 551-429. The Red Storm also competed against Maine Girls’ Academy and Waynflete. Scarborough’s girls beat MGA, 527-269, and downed the Flyers, 541-140. The boys beat Waynflete, 405-191.

South Portland swept Westbrook, as the boys prevailed, 102-62, and the girls won, 115-65.

Friday, Cape Elizabeth hosts Westbrook, Scarborough welcomes Portland and South Portland is home with Kennebunk.

Skiing

Cape Elizabeth’s boys’ Alpine ski team won a giant slalom meet last week at Shawnee Peak, beating three other teams. Killian Lathrop was first individually with a two-run combined time of 1 minute, 4.16 seconds. The Capers girls were fourth and were led by Addie McGrath (11th, 1:13.47).

Wrestling

The Portland/South Portland co-op wrestling team entered Wednesday’s meet at Sanford with a 7-4 record after wins last week over Cheverus (39-31) and Deering (48-27) and losses to Massabesic (40-38) and Wells (58-15). Saturday, Portland/South Portland takes on Biddeford, Marshwood and Scarborough.

Scarborough was 4-3 after a 51-18 loss to Wells and a 39-27 win over Lisbon. The Red Storm were at Massabesic Wednesday and visit Portland Saturday.

Sports Editor Michael Hoffer can be reached at mhoffer@theforecaster.net. Follow him on Twitter: @foresports

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Sports Editor of The Forecaster since 2001. Find detailed game stories at theforecaster.net. I tweet prodigiously at @foresports.