Winter season off and running
(Ed. Note: For the complete Falmouth-Yarmouth and Yarmouth-York boys' basketball, Falmouth-Poland and Freeport-York girls' basketball and Greely-Scarborough girls' hockey game stories, please visit theforecaster.net)
A calendar year is coming to a close, but the new winter sports season is just getting going. Local athletes have already made their mark in several sports and the best is yet to come. Here's a glimpse:
After its undefeated run ended in last year's regional final, the Falmouth boys' basketball team is once again running roughshod over the opposition this winter. The Yachtsmen have enjoyed easy wins over host Cape Elizabeth (72-49), visiting Fryeburg (83-33), visiting Greely (63-45), host Poland (68-35), host Yarmouth (55-34, avenging last year's playoff ouster) and host Traip (74-47).
Falmouth will take part in the holiday tournament at the Portland Expo, then returns to league play with a highly anticipated showdown against visiting York, which is also undefeated, Jan 3.
Defending Class B state champion Yarmouth opened with wins over visiting Gray-New Gloucester (70-46) and at Lake Region (67-52), then lost at Wells (71-65), at home to York (72-48) and at home to Falmouth (55-34), before it evened its record at 3-3 with a 46-41 win at Fryeburg. The Clippers are back in action Jan. 3, when they host Freeport. Yarmouth has a showdown at Greely Jan. 5.
Speaking of the Rangers, they rang in the Travis Seaver Era with an 80-73 overtime win at Wells, then lost at home to York (71-48) and at Falmouth (63-45). Greely bounced back with a 65-59 home win over Fryeburg and after a 56-47 loss at Cape Elizabeth, closed 2012 with a 75-50 home win over Poland. The Rangers go to Lake Region Jan. 3.
Freeport got a win in its opener, 51-36, at home over North Yarmouth Academy, then lost at Cape Elizabeth (66-34), at home to Lake Region (58-38), at Wells (75-44) and at York (70-19). The Falcons go to Yarmouth Jan. 3.
NYA is 1-5 to date. After losses at Freeport (51-36) and at home to Old Orchard Beach (51-23), the Panthers won at Sacopee, 47-37. NYA closed the calendar year with losses at Traip (58-41), at Waynflete (70-28) and at A.R. Gould (54-47). The Panthers are back in action Jan. 4, when they host A.R. Gould.
On the girls' side, one of the most intriguing teams in the area is up-and-coming Freeport. The Falcons opened with a 66-4 win at NYA, then lost at home to Cape Elizabeth (45-33) and at Lake Region (45-27). A 52-33 home win over Wells followed, but last Thursday, Freeport dropped a gutwrenching 55-52 home decision to perennial power York after a last second 3-pointer went in-and-out. The Falcons hope to even their record when they go to Yarmouth Jan. 3. Two nights later, Freeport hosts Falmouth.
The Yachtsmen opened with wins over visiting Cape Elizabeth (54-42) and at Fryeburg (59-49), then lost at Greely (46-32) and at home to Poland (46-32). Falmouth finished the 2012 portion of its schedule at 4-2 after wins over visiting Yarmouth (79-40) and Traip (80-27). The Yachtsmen are back in action Jan. 3 at York.
Greely has won five of its first six outings, starting with a 53-39 home decision over Wells. After losing at York, 39-34, the Rangers beat visiting Falmouth (46-32), host Fryeburg (54-29), visiting Cape Elizabeth (37-31) and host Poland (51-44). Greely has a home showdown against reigning Western B champion Lake Region Jan. 3.
Yarmouth, last year's surprise, has dropped its first six games: 82-38 to host Gray-New Gloucester, 77-53 to visiting Lake Region, 51-47 to visiting Wells, 70-47 at York, 79-40 at Falmouth and 57-46 to visiting Fryeburg. The Clippers host Freeport Jan. 3.
NYA started 0-5, losing at home to Freeport (66-4), at Old Orchard Beach (54-22), at home to Sacopee (44-29), at Traip (55-19) and at Waynflete (76-22). The Panthers are back in action Jan. 4 when they host Hebron.
On the ice, defending boys' Class B champion Greely has passed every test to date, blanking visiting Gardiner (6-0), holding off host York (3-2), downing visiting Cape Elizabeth (7-3) and outscoring host Thornton Academy, the two-time defending Class A champion, 7-5. The Rangers return to action Jan. 5, when they host perennial Class A power Lewiston.
Yarmouth is seeking its first victory. After losing at home to Camden Hills, 5-2, the Clippers tied host Cape Elizabeth, 2-2. A 4-1 home loss to Gardiner, a 1-1 tie at Edward Little and a 2-1 loss at York ensued. Yarmouth is back in action Jan. 3 at home against Cheverus.
Falmouth enjoyed wins at St. Dom's (5-3) and at home over Marshwood (12-0) to start the season, then suffered a 4-3 overtime loss at Scarborough and a 3-2 setback at Lewiston, before bouncing back to improve to 3-2 with a 5-3 home win over Gorham Saturday. The Yachtsmen host Lewiston Thursday of next week.
On the girls' side, defending state champion Greely has been very competitive, going 6-2-1 to date after a 2-2 tie at red-hot Scarborough Saturday. The Rangers were at Winslow Wednesday, then are idle until Jan. 5 when they host Cheverus.
Falmouth improved to 5-4 with a 6-0 win at Gorham Friday. The Yachtsmen played host to York Wednesday and plays at Cheverus Jan. 3.
Yarmouth improved to 3-5-1 Friday after a 6-3 win at Mt. Ararat. The Clippers play host to Lewiston Saturday and Brunswick Jan. 2.
Indoor track teams will take part in the USM Classic Saturday.
The Western Maine Conference league season begins Friday, Jan. 4.
In the early meet, Falmouth, Freeport, Greely and Yarmouth will compete against each other, as well as Gray-New Gloucester, Hyde and York.
In the late meet, NYA takes on Cape Elizabeth, Fryeburg, Lake Region, Lisbon, Poland, St. Dom's, Traip and Wells.
Greely's defending Class B state champion boys' swim team opened the year with a 48-46 loss to Scarborough, then downed Massabesic, 53-40. The Rangers are back in action Thursday at Falmouth.
Falmouth lost close decisions to South Portland (84-77) and Scarborough (97-79) in its first two outings.
Yarmouth dropped a 74-66 decision to Gorham in its first match, then defeated Bonny Eagle, 91-75. Saturday, the Clippers host Westbrook.
On the girls' side, defending Class B champion Greely downed Scarborough in the opener, 57-37, then beat McAuley (46-36) and Massabesic (62-32). The Rangers welcome Deering Jan. 4.
Falmouth is 3-0, defeating South Portland (106-68), Scarborough (96-83) and McAuley (97-71). The Yachtsmen swim at Kennebunk Jan. 4.
Yarmouth lost to Gorham, 86-81, in its first meet. The Clippers then enjoyed a 112-45 win over Bonny Eagle. Yarmouth goes to Windham Jan. 3.
The Alpine and Nordic ski seasons begin in earnest in the new year.