Spring sports season in full swing
(Ed. Note: For the complete Falmouth-Cape Elizabeth, Falmouth-Yarmouth, NYA-Yarmouth, NYA-Cape Elizabeth and Yarmouth-South Portland boys' lacrosse and Falmouth-Yarmouth, Falmouth-Cape Elizabeth, Falmouth-Marshwood, Freeport-NYA and Yarmouth-Scarborough girls' lacrosse game stories, with box scores and additional photos, please visit theforecaster.net/section/sports).
The calendar has flipped to May and while summer is still several weeks away, Mother Nature has come around with increasing warmth and sunshine as the spring sports season got underway in full last week.
Local baseball, softball, lacrosse, track and tennis teams all created plenty of drama with much more to come.
Here's a glimpse:
If you wondered what the defending Class B state champion Falmouth baseball team and its ace, senior Thomas Fortier, would do for an encore this spring, it didn't take long to find out.
The Yachtsmen opened in Cape Elizabeth last week and beat the Capers, 2-0, in a rematch of last year's regional final, but the story was Fortier, who threw a no-hitter.
"I was just feeling it," said Fortier, who did walk four hitters. "The game just flew by. It was like nothing else I've ever experienced. My fastball was working and my curve too. It was all there."
"(Thomas) had a great performance in Florida (during our vacation week trip)," Falmouth coach Kevin Winship said. "He allowed just one hit in the last game. I thought he pitched great (against Cape). He seemed to hit the inside corner really well. His breaking ball was sharp. He threw strikes, got ahead of hitters and kept them off-balance. Overall, it was another great performance. He's coming off a great season. He and (pitching coach Craig Pendleton) have worked really hard to make him of the best pitchers around."
Connor MacDowell had three hits, Drew Proctor two and Connor Murphy had a key RBI, but it was Fortier's day.
"Last year, I was more lucky than skilled," said Fortier, who will play for St. Joseph's College next year. "This year, I have a lot more command and I'm a lot faster."
The Yachtsmen kept the good times rolling with wins at Freeport (11-3) and at home over Fryeburg (12-2, in six innings). Against the Falcons, Fortier got it done with his bat, getting two hits and driving in a pair of runs, while Andrew Emple, Addison Foltmer and Luke Velas all had multiple hits. In the win over the Raiders, Foltmer almost matched Fortier by throwing five no-hit innings. He also had two hits and an RBI. Emple hit a three-run home run and Fortier had three RBI, including the hit to end the game.
Falmouth looked to stay unbeaten Wednesday when it hosted Gray-New Gloucester. Friday brings a showdown at Greely. The Yachtsmen go to Lake Region Monday.
Speaking of Greely, the Rangers are off to another sizzling start, downing visiting Fryeburg (10-0, in five innings), visiting Lake Region (12-0, in five innings) and Gray-New Gloucester (11-1, in six innings) and winning at Poland, 9-0. Against the Raiders, Bailey Train earned the win and had three hits, including a home run, and three RBI. In the win over the Lakers, Connor Russell earned his first varsity win by fanning 10 and allowing just two hits, while Pat O'Shea had two hits, two RBI and scored twice and Jonah Normandeau added two hits and two runs scored. Against the Patriots, Normandeau threw a six inning no-hitter and ended the game with a walkoff home run. Train threw a one-hitter at the Knights.
Greely was home with Wells Wednesday, welcomes Falmouth Friday and goes to Freeport Monday.
The Falcons opened with a 5-2 home loss to Yarmouth, beat visiting Cape Elizabeth, 6-1, then lost to host York (7-1), visiting Falmouth (11-3) and visiting York (5-3). Niko DiFazio had two hits and two runs against the Clippers. Freshman Jack Davenport earned his first varsity win and had a couple hits in the victory.
Freeport was home with Old Orchard Beach Wednesday, hosts Gray-New Gloucester Friday and welcomes Greely Monday.
Yarmouth got off to a 4-1 start. The Clippers won at Freeport in the opener, 5-2, behind Calvin Cooper and Nick Lainey's two RBI apiece. Lainey also earned the win on the mound. A 3-1 home win over Wells followed, as Chester Jacobs threw a three-hitter. Yarmouth then went to Lake Region and prevailed, 7-0. Lainey threw a three-hit shutout for six innings, fanning seven. Ian Grover had three hits and drove in two. Ethan Perrier had two RBI and Matt Highland had two hits. After a 7-4 home loss to Old Orchard Beach, the Clippers won at Gray-New Gloucester, 6-3, in a game which featured an odd ending in the sixth inning. With the sun preventing the catcher and home plate umpire from seeing the field, the contest was called for safety reasons. Lainey had a key two-run hit in that victory.
Yarmouth was at Poland Wednesday and hosts Fryeburg Monday.
On the softball side, Greely is leading the way.
The Rangers opened with a 4-1 home loss to Fryeburg, but handled visiting Lake Region (15-2), blanked visiting Gray-New Gloucester, 2-0, and won at Poland, 6-1. Dani Cimino threw a four-hitter and drove in a run (Mykaela Twitchell also had an RBI) versus the Patriots. At the Knights, Cimino had a three-hitter and Elyse Dinan drove in four runs and homered.
Greely was home with Wells Wednesday, hosts Falmouth Friday and goes to the Yachtsmen Saturday. The Rangers play at Freeport Monday.
Yarmouth has gotten off to a hot start under new coach Amy McMullin. The Clippers beat visiting Freeport, 5-1, in the opener. After a 12-5 home loss to Wells, they romped, 14-4 at Lake Region and 19-4 over visiting Old Orchard Beach, before suffering a 5-2 setback at Gray-New Gloucester. Against the Lakers, the Clippers scored in every inning but one, Alexa Sullivan threw a complete game for her first victory and Libby King had four hits, Monica Austin three and Mckenzie Gray hit a home run. Yarmouth scored 15 runs in the first inning against the Seagulls and never looked back as Mari Cooper had two RBI and Gray, Kallie Hutchinson and Julia Anastos all had two hits and drove in two runs. Gray had three hits and two runs scored in the loss to the Patriots.
The Clippers were at Poland Wednesday, go to Old Orchard Beach Friday and play host to reigning regional champion Fryeburg Monday.
Falmouth opened with an 11-1 loss at Cape Elizabeth, but bounced back to edge host Freeport, 4-3, Friday, behind a strong pitching effort from Julia Treadwell, three hits from Maddie Inlow and a pair from Jessica Collins. The Yachtsmen fell to 1-2 Monday with a 10-0 home loss to Fryeburg.
Falmouth was home with Gray-New Gloucester Wednesday, goes to Greely Friday, hosts the Rangers Saturday, then plays at Lake Region Monday.
Freeport dropped its first two games, 5-1, at Yarmouth and 9-0 to visiting Cape Elizabeth, then got in the win column, 5-4 at York, in eight innings. Jill Baker had the winning hit and Leigh Wyman earned the victory. The Falcons suffered a 4-3 home loss to Falmouth Friday, but bounced back Monday and improved to 2-3 with a 7-6 victory over visiting York.
After going to Old Orchard Beach Wednesday, Freeport is home with Gray-New Gloucester Friday and welcomes Greely Monday.
Local boys' lacrosse teams have already played multiple games and there have been some absolute thrillers.
Leading the pack in the early going is Yarmouth, which has awakened the echoes with wins at North Yarmouth Academy (7-6, on Ian Edgecomb's game-winning goal in the final minute), at home over Falmouth (10-9, on Edgecomb's overtime goal) and at South Portland (15-4, as Edgecomb, Ethan Cyr, Brady Neujahr and Henry Oliva all scored three times.
"The boys came out fired up and ready to play," said Clippers coach David Pearl. "We're fortunate to be starting strong this year."
Yarmouth is idle until Saturday night, when it has a showdown at Cape Elizabeth.
"What will keep us focused is that we play Cape Elizabeth, one of our toughest opponents every year," Pearl added. "They're our oldest rivalry and it's at their place. Hannaford Field has not been kind to us. They've been the gold standard for many years."
Tuesday, the Clippers play at Freeport.
Hot on Yarmouth's trail is NYA, which bounced back from its season-opening loss to the Clippers with wins at Wells (16-4), at home over Cape Elizabeth (9-6), at three-time defending Class A champion Scarborough (8-5) and at Fryeburg (12-2). Oliver Silverson had six goals against the Warriors. In the win over the Capers, the Panthers' first in 10 tries, they erased a 5-1 first half deficit and allowed just one goal over the final 34 minutes. Silverson had the tying and go-ahead tallies.
"This feels very good," said NYA coach Peter Gerrity. "These boys hadn't beaten Cape. Now we know we can play with the best teams in the state."
Against the Red Storm, Jacob Scammon scored three times. Scammon scored four more goals in the win at the Raiders.
Freeport opened with losses to visiting Greely (14-4), at York (7-5) and at Gorham (7-4). Clayton Morrison had three goals against the Wildcats. Morrison and Galen Simmons both scored twice against the Rams. The Falcons were at Fryeburg Wednesday, host Waynflete Saturday and play host to Yarmouth Tuesday.
In Western B, Falmouth, the two-time defending state champion, has found the going difficult in the early season. The Yachtsmen opened with a 10-9 overtime loss at Yarmouth (despite three goals each from Brad Gilbert and Bryce Kuhn), romped over visiting Portland, 18-1 (Kuhn, Charlie Fay and I.V. Stucker each had four goals), then lost in overtime again in an instant classic Monday, 11-10, to visiting Cape Elizabeth. Falmouth let leads of 8-3, 9-8 and 10-9 slip away and Fay's six goals went for naught.
"The thing that stings the most is that we had a five-goal lead and we weren't able to hold onto it," said Falmouth coach Mike LeBel. "That's a representation of our inexperience. I knew the game wasn't over at 8-3, but (the guys) may have. There was way too much time."
The Yachtsmen were at Lake Region Wednesday and host NYA Monday.
Greely has quietly put together a strong start, beating host Freeport, 14-4, visiting Waynflete, 11-10, and host Massabesic, 8-7. Tim Adams had five goals and Brendan Trelegan four against the Falcons. Trelegan had five versus the Flyers (as the Rangers rallied from an early 4-0 deficit) and scored three more against the Mustangs.
Greely was at Wells Wednesday, hosts York Friday and has a huge home test versus Cape Elizabeth Tuesday.
Yarmouth's girls' team opened with losses to host Falmouth (16-7) and visiting Waynflete, the defending Class B state champion (17-5), then was staring a third straight loss in the face Saturday when it was down, 6-1, in the second half to host three-time defending Class A champion Scarborough. The Clippers battled back, however, and rallied for a palpitating 8-7 win, on Olivia Conrad's goal with just 16.8 seconds remaining.
It's huge," Conrad said. "I can't stop smiling. We really needed this because we've had a tough start to the season. I think now, we'll only go up from here."
"It's a tribute to our hard work," Yarmouth coach Dorothy Holt said. "We have such great leadership. They got everyone to settle. We had two tough games at the start of the season and that had us down a little bit, but we came back and worked so hard this week. Our youngsters are stepping into their roles."
The Clippers hosted Falmouth Wednesday, welcome NYA Friday and go to Wells Tuesday.
The Panthers were still seeking their first win at press time, losing, 13-8, to visiting Freeport in their opener last week. Olivia Madore did have five goals in that one.
"We're a talented team, but we didn't show our talent until the second half," NYA coach Lynn Sullivan said. "We've got to figure out a way to play 50 minutes of intense lacrosse. I've seen it. We have it. It's just a matter of doing it."
The Panthers were home with York Tuesday, go to Yarmouth Friday and welcome Greely Tuesday of next week.
Defending Eastern B champion Freeport got five goals from Aubrey Pennell and four from Meredith Broderick in opening with a 13-8 victory at NYA.
"There are a lot of good players who can score," said Broderick. "Going into this season, knowing we can pass to different people, it's great to have."
The Falcons then hung tough with powerhouse Cape Elizabeth for a half before losing, 13-4. Jocelyn Davee had three goals in that one. Freeport beat visiting Windham, 9-6, Saturday (Broderick had three goals, Davee and Pennell two each), but fell to 2-2 Monday with a 10-8 loss at Greely (despite three goals each from Broderick and Davee).
The Falcons hosted York Wednesday, welcome Fryeburg Thursday, then have a state championship game rematch at Waynflete Tuesday.
In Western B, Falmouth opened with a 16-7 home win over Yarmouth (Alex Bernier had eight goals), then, after a stunningly decisive 18-5 home loss to Cape Elizabeth, rallied to beat visiting Marshwood, 11-10, Friday night. Bernier (who had six assists) scored the winner with 1:50 left and freshman goalie Sarah Hutcheon made a pivotal save in the waning seconds. Molly Ryan scored four times.
"We'll take it," said Yachtsmen coach Robin Haley. "It's definitely a confidence builder for us. We did a lot of things really well defensively today. The girls are just working hard. We had good practices to get ready. (Marshwood's) considered a top five team and we're not, so to beat them, it's big. We figured out a way."
After going to Yarmouth Wednesday, Falmouth welcomes Waynflete for a playoff rematch Friday evening.
Greely has been impressive by winning its first three games for new coach (and alumna Becca Lambertson Koelker), 14-11 at York, 11-10 over visiting Massabesic and 10-8 over visiting Freeport. Paige Tuller had five goals and Julia Mitiguy four in the win at the Wildcats. Against the Falcons, Meg Finlay had five goals.
The Rangers are home with York Friday and go to NYA Tuesday.
The outdoor track season began with plenty of familiar names doing their thing.
Falmouth's boys and girls defeated Gray-New Gloucester, Lake Region and Traip Academy.
The boys got wins from Alex Gowan in the 100 (12.16 seconds), Jacob Buhelt in the 200 (23.51), Scott Lambert in the two-mile (10 minutes, 31.97 seconds), Andrew Thornton in the pole vault (11 feet), Grant Burfeind in the long jump (19-9.75), Matt Edmonds in the shot put (37-2.25), Shreyas Joshi in the discus (123-11), Jon Walker in the javelin (147-10), and the 400 (44.71) and 1,600 (3:45.68) relays.
Girls' winners included Alta Farrell in the mile (5:52.55), Madeline Roberts in the two-mile (12:38.42), Kiersten Dyhrberg in the discus (86-2) and the 3,200 relay team (11:16.5).
NYA and Yarmouth joined A.R. Gould and Waynflete at Sacopee Friday. The Clippers boys and girls were second, while the Panthers boys and girls placed third.
Individually, Yarmouth got wins from Wes Crawford in the 800 (2:05.5), Chandler Smith in the javelin (134-6) and all three relays in the boys' meet and Emma Egan (long jump, 14-1; high jump, 5-0; 400, 1:03.7), Megan Smith (pole vault, 8-0), Gina Robertson (javelin 77-2), Abby Vogel (shot put, 33-7), Simone Laverriere in the mile (6:33.4) and the 400 and 3,200 relays in the girls' meet.
NYA boys' winners included Michael McIntosh in the 100 (11.3) and 200 (23.4), Duncan George in the mile (5:03.1), Jake Burns in the 300 hurdles (42.2) and Jin Yao in the two-mile (12:42.9). The Panthers got wins in the girls' meet from Jillian Bjorn-Caron in the 100 hurdles (18.7) and the triple jump (26-2.25), Kayla Rose in the discus (89-8), Hannah Austin in the two-mile (12:14.8) and Ellis Miskell in the racewalk (12:50).
Freeport's girls won a five-team meet at Cape Elizabeth, getting wins from Olivia Bubar in the discus (65-.0.75), Lexi Dietrich in the 200 (27.3), Kelsey Grant in the 100 hurdles (17.5) and all three relay teams.
The boys placed third, getting wins from Harrison Stivers in the 400 (52.0), Zach Merrill in the 800 (2:19.4) and Mark Donahue in the two-mile (11:15.6).
Last, but not least, Greely joined Fryeburg and York at Poland. The girls took top honors and the boys were second to the Wildcats.
The girls got wins from Gwen Sawyer in the discus (107-4) and the shot put (37-10.5), Kirstin Sandreuter in the mile (5:15.8) and two-mile (11:12.9), Hannah Keisman in the 100 hurdles (17.2) and Sarah Ingraham in the long jump (15-5).
Boys' victors included Liam Campbell in the 800 (2:04.9) and the mile (4:48.1), Jacob Isaacson in the 100 (11.6), Ryan Morrison in the two-mile (10:56.5), James Ferrar in the shot put (40-11), Nick Maynard in the high jump (5-8), Dan Ray in the pole vault (11-0) and the 400 relay (47.9).
Falmouth's girls' tennis team remains unbeatable, extending its win streak to 80 with 3-0 wins over Yarmouth, Cape Elizabeth and Old Orchard Beach. A home match with Western C power NYA could be a challenge Monday.
Elsewhere, Freeport fell to 1-2 with a 4-1 loss to Cape Elizabeth Monday, Greely is off to a 4-1 start after a 4-1 win over NYA, while the Panthers fell to 1-2 with that setback, and Yarmouth has a record of 0-4 after a 5-0 loss to York.
The big news on the boys' side came Friday, when two-time defending Class B champion Falmouth lost, 4-1, at home to rival Cape Elizabeth, to snap a 34-match win streak. The Yachtsmen looked to start a new one Wednesday when Lake Region paid a visit.
Elsewhere, Freeport is 1-2 after a 4-1 loss to Cape Elizabeth, Greely fell to 1-4 with a 4-1 loss to NYA, which is now 3-1, and Yarmouth began the week 0-3.