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Many thrills this winter

Sports

Many thrills this winter

No matter your sport, the winter of 2013-14 delivered.

Boys' hockey once again produced a champion, as Falmouth went back-to-back in Class A. Greely (which saw its two-year title run end) and Yarmouth also took part in the postseason. While Greely's two-year run on the girls' side ended, the Rangers made it to the tournament, as did Falmouth and the resurgent Yarmouth/Freeport co-op team.

While no basketball team reached the pinnacle this winter, Falmouth, Greely and Yarmouth's boys all won a tournament game and North Yarmouth Academy also made it to the playoffs. On the girls' side, while Falmouth and NYA were ousted in the preliminary round, Greely got to the semifinals.

There was plenty of greatness on the slopes, trails, track and in the pool as well.

Here's one last look back at a winter that wouldn't end and for sports fans, that was OK by us.

Winter champions

Team
Falmouth Yachtsmen boys' hockey, Class A
Falmouth Yachtsmen boys' Nordic skiing, Class A
Falmouth Yachtsmen girls' Nordic skiing, Class A
Falmouth Yachtsmen girls' combined skiing, Class A
Greely Rangers boys' swimming, Class B
Greely Rangers girls' Alpine skiing, Class A
Merriconeag boys' Nordic skiing, Class C
Merriconeag girls' Nordic skiing, Class C
Yarmouth Clippers boys' Nordic skiing, Class B
Yarmouth Clippers girls' Nordic skiing, Class B
Yarmouth Clippers girls' combined skiing, Class B

Individual

Alpine skiing
Joe Lesniak, Falmouth, boys' slalom, Class A
Joe Lesniak, Falmouth, boys' giant slalom, Class A
Anna Morin, Falmouth, girls' skimeister, Class A
Jay Pier, Freeport, boys' giant slalom, Class B
Elyse Dinan, Greely, slalom, Class A
Elyse Dinan, Greely, girls' slalom, Class A

Nordic skiing
Anna Morin, Falmouth, girls' skimeister, Class A
Samantha Pierce, Merriconeag, girls' classical, Class C
Braden Becker, Yarmouth, boys' classical, Class B
Carter Hall, Yarmouth, boys' freestyle, Class B

Swimming
Charlotte Janelle, Falmouth, girls' diving, Class A
Jake Perron, Falmouth, boys' 50 freestyle, Class A
Jake Perron, Falmouth, boys' 500 free, Class A
Jack Benoit, Greely, boys' 100 backstroke, Class B
Jonathan Dunnett, Greely, boys' 200 individual medley, Class B
Jonathan Dunnett, Greely, boys' 100 butterfly, Class B
Sonia Lin, NYA, girls' 100 breaststroke, Class B

Track
Harrison Stivers, Freeport, boys' 400, Class B
Kirstin Sandreuter, Greely, girls' two-mile, Class B
Michael McIntosh, NYA, boys' 55, Class B
Michael McIntosh, NYA, boys' 200, Class B

Michael's top five stories

5) Track excellence

No team indoor track titles were won this winter, but that doesn't mean there weren't a lot of impressive accomplishments. For starters, the Falmouth girls, the Western Maine Conference champions, in their first ever Class A state meet, produced a first-place 800 relay team (Maggie Seitz, Elizabeth Cyr, Emma England and Charlotte Cutshall ) which went on to compete at New Englands, where it came in 17th. Freeport's Harrison Stivers won the boys' 400 at the Class B meet, while North Yarmouth Academy's Michael McIntosh won the 55 and the 200 at the same meet. Greely's Kirstin Sandreuter was the girls' two-mile champion in Class B and teamed with Emily Mason, Sophia Stickney and Eva Bates to capture the 3,200 relay. Freeport had a champion 800 relay team (Meredith Broderick, Hayley Steckler, Bethanie Knighton and Lexi Dietrich).

4) Best season yet for Yarmouth girls' hockey

The Yarmouth/Freeport girls' hockey co-op team didn't have much of a pedigree entering the 2013-14 campaign, but quickly made a name for itself. Yarmouth/Freeport downed Brunswick, 7-2, in the opener Nov. 23 and didn't suffer a loss until three days after Christmas, after starting the season 8-0. Yarmouth/Freeport wound up a program-best 13-4-1 and after blanking Mt. Ararat in the East Region quarterfinals finally met its match in top-ranked Leavitt/Edward Little in the semis. Still, it was a fantastic season and set the stage for future success.

3) Greely swimmers do it once more

Greely's boys' swim team won its fifth successive Class B title back in February and was sparked by two-event champion Jonathan Dunnett, who was named Swimmer of the Meet after winning both the 200 individual medley and the 100 butterfly, setting new school records in the process. Additionally, Dunnett teamed with Jack Benoit, Griffin Fluet and Connor Russell to win the 200 medley relay. Benoit (100 backstroke) was another event winner. Falmouth's Jake Perron (boys' 50 freestyle and 500 free) and Charlotte Janelle (girls' diving) also won Class A individual crowns, while NYA's Sonia Lin (girls' 100 breaststroke) was another Class B individual champion.

2) Skiers set the bar again

Forecaster Country skiers just keep getting better and better and the rest of the state isn't able to do much about it. This winter, the list of team champions read Falmouth (boys' Nordic, girls' Nordic and girls' combined), Greely (girls' Alpine), Merriconeag (boys' Nordic, girls' Nordic) and Yarmouth (boys' Nordic, girls' Nordic and girls' combined). If that wasn't enough, several individuals dazzled as well. On the downhill side, Falmouth's Joe Lesniak won both the Class A slalom and giant slalom, while Greely's Elyse Dinan did the same. Freeport's Jay Pier took the GS in Class B. Cross-country produced a Class B title for Yarmouth's Braden Becker (classical) and Carter Hall (freestyle) and Merriconeag's Samantha Pierce (classical). Falmouth's Anna Morin did a little of everything and won the Class A skimeister crown.

1) Falmouth hockey repeats in OT

It was the perfect punctuation mark to a fun and memorable winter sports season when the Falmouth boys' hockey team met St. Dom's in the Class A Final March 8. Unless like year's 4-0 state game victory over Lewiston, the Yachtsmen trailed much of the way, tied the game on Jake Grade's goal, then, in overtime, won it, when Grade struck again for a 3-2 victory. A wild celebration ensued and Falmouth has now established itself as the state's gold standard.

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