South edition: Spring season in full flower
As the surprisingly good weather continues (for the most part), fans and athletes alike are thrilled that all spring sports are underway.
Forecaster Country schools have impressed in the early going. Here's a glimpse:
Baseball: Scarborough crushes Cheverus
Scarborough's baseball team made a big statement last week when it bounced back from a disappointing home loss by pummeling visiting Cheverus 14-0 (in five innings) to improve to 2-1. Junior catcher Jake Rutt hit the first pitch of the bottom of the first inning over the centerfield fence to set the tone. Rutt would go deep again and senior pitching ace Chris Bernard allowed just three hits and also homered to help put the game away.
"We had great pitching once again," Scarborough coach Jim Cronin said. "Bernard was solid. We played errorless defense. Couldn't ask for much more. We needed it after the last game."
The Red Storm (fifth in the initial Western Class A Heal Points standings) were supposed to host Thornton Academy Tuesday, but rain postponed the game 24 hours Thursday, Scarborough was at Portland, then hosts two-time defending Class A state champion Deering Saturday and Massabesic Tuesday.
South Portland, which suffered its first loss, 5-4 at Bonny Eagle last Thursday, was supposed to visit Deering Tuesday night, but that game was postponed by rain and then was postponed again Wednesday. The Red Riots (sixth in the initial Heals) hosted Biddeford Thursday (too late for print), welcome Sanford Friday and visit Westbrook Tuesday.
In Western B, the defending regional champion Cape Elizabeth Capers have put it together. After losing at Poland April 27, the Capers downed visiting Gray-New Gloucester (3-0), host Freeport (16-2) and host Sacopee (12-0, in six innings) to improve to 4-1.
Senior Andrew Guay threw a five-hit shutout against the Patriots, sophomore Kyle Danielson had a pair of three-run dingers against the Falcons and Danielson had four hits and three RBI, while junior Conor Moloney hurled a shutout against the Hawks.
Cape Elizabeth (tied for ninth in the initial Heals) was home against Lake Region Wednesday, welcomes Wells Friday, then has a showdown at undefeated Greely Monday.
Softball: Two still perfect
On the girls' side of the diamond, Cape Elizabeth and Scarborough remain undefeated.
The Capers aren't only 5-0, they haven't surrendered a run. Cape Elizabeth blanked Gray-New Gloucester 4-0, Freeport 2-0 and Sacopee 8-0 in recent action.
Against the Patriots, senior ace Trish Thibodeau allowed just four hits and fanned eight, while senior standout catcher Colleen Martin hit a three-run triple to break open a scoreless tie in the sixth. In the win at Freeport, Thibodeau hurled a perfect game, striking out 15. Senior Grace Stack had the game-winning RBI. Against the Hawks, Thibodeau surrendered three hits, but struck out nine and junior Gabe Donahue crushed a home run.
The Capers (tied for first in the initial Western B Heal Points standings) were supposed to host Lake Region Wednesday, but that game was postponed. They play host to Wells Friday and go to Greely Monday.
In Western A, Scarborough took a 5-0 mark into Wednesday's home game versus Westbrook (too late for print). The Red Storm won 9-1 at Sanford, 13-1 (in five innings) at home against Kennebunk and 3-2 at Deering in recent action.
Against the Redskins, junior ace Melissa Dellatorre fanned nine and senior Catie Funk and freshman Abby Rutt crushed home runs (Rutt added a bases loaded triple). In the win over Kennebunk, Dellatorre was again dominant, allowing three hits while striking out 10, and Funk and senior Bri Mancuso homered to power a 15-hit attack. Freshman Mo Hannan held Deering at bay Monday and Scarborough had its closest game to date.
The Red Storm (second in the Heals) went to Windham Friday and host Noble Monday.
South Portland bounced back from its first loss, 2-1 at Cheverus April 29, by beating host Bonny Eagle 6-4 and McAuley 7-0. Against the Scots, sophomore Alexis Bogdanovich earned the win with 11 strikeouts, while classmate Danielle DiBiase had three hits. Against the Lions, senior Lauren Tuttle allowed five hits and fanned 13. Bogdanovich led the offense with a three-run homer.
The Red Riots (10th in the Heals) hosted Sanford Wednesday, play at Kennebunk Friday and welcome Deering Monday.
Boys' lacrosse: Scarborough downs NYA again
Tuesday night, for the second year in a row, the Scarborough boys' lacrosse team dispatched perennial power North Yarmouth Academy. After winning in Yarmouth last season, the Red Storm pulled the feat at home this year, rallying from an early 3-1 deficit with five straight goals to take the lead for good. After the Panthers drew to within 6-5 early in the second half, Scarborough put it away with four in a row and went on to a huge 11-8 victory.
"It was a big step in the right direction for us," said Red Storm coach Joe Hezlep. "The defense was confused at first. They did some nice things to disguise what they were doing."
Junior Matt Mayo had four goals, while senior Jake Barrett added three.
Scarborough (now 4-0 and first in the initial Western A Heal Points standings) had previously won 13-6 at Massabesic and 13-1 at home over Deering.
The NYA game was the first in a brutal three-game stretch that will help determine the Red Storm's spot in the state pecking order. Friday, Scarborough goes to Portland for a game which could help decide homefield advantage for the playoffs. Tuesday, the Red Storm visit defending Class B state champion Yarmouth.
"(Portland's) our first big Class A challenge," Hezlep said. "They have some excellent poles. We have to dodge smarter. We need to eliminate mistakes. They're high-powered on offense. We have to come ready to play. This is the biggest stretch for us. NYA, Portland, Yarmouth. It doesn't get any tougher."
South Portland fell to 1-1 last Friday with a 6-3 home to loss to Thornton Academy. The Red Riots (fourth in the Western A Heals) was home with Greely Wednesday, goes to Gorham Saturday and hosts Deering Tuesday.
In Western B, Cape Elizabeth won its third game in a row Wednesday night (please see story, page ?).
Girls' lacrosse: Capers looking good
On the girls' side, Cape Elizabeth lost by a goal at home to Kennebunk in its opener, but responded with a 15-4 win at Deering and a 10-5 triumph at York. Against the Rams, senior Nora Daly scored four times. Senior Maggie Darling had four goals to key the win over the Wildcats.
The Capers (third in the initial Western B Heals) go to Greely Friday, visit NYA Monday and host Cheverus Tuesday.
Scarborough suffered its first loss Tuesday. The Red Storm almost rallied from a seven-goal halftime deficit before falling 12-9 at NYA. Scarborough was coming off a 14-10 win at Cheverus last Friday behind a second half surge paced by juniors Lindsay Hagerman and Ellie Morin.
Scarborough (fourth in the Western A Heals) hosted Yarmouth Thursday, welcomes Marshwood Monday, then visits defending Class B champion Waynflete for the first time since 2003 Tuesday afternoon.
South Portland is seeking its first win. The Red Riots dropped to 0-2 last Friday with a 16-7 setback at Gorham. South Portland went to Windham Wednesday. The Red Riots (tied for 10th in the Heals) go to Bonny Eagle Friday and host Freeport Tuesday.
Tennis: Scarborough on a roll
On the hardcourts, the Scarborough girls are proving to be much more than the Kasia Jania Show. The Red Storm (second in the Western A Heals) beat visiting Thornton Academy 4-1 Monday to improve to 4-0. The Scarborough boys aren't too shabby either. Monday's 5-0 win at Thornton Academy left that team 3-0 and tied for eighth in the Heals.
South Portland's girls (tied for 10th in Western A) evened their record at 2-2 Monday with a 4-1 win at Marshwood. The boys (sixth in the Heals) dropped to 1-2 after a 4-1 home loss to the Hawks.
In Western B, Cape Elizabeth's boys (sixth in the Heals) fell from the unbeaten ranks Monday with a 4-1 loss at defending Class C state champion Waynflete. The girls' squad is 2-3 (and third in the standings) after Monday's 3-2 home loss to the Flyers.
Sports Editor Michael Hoffer can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org