Greely swim title highlights busy postseason week
Last week was about more than just the basketball tournament. Several other winter sports (including skiing, see story) also produced postseason excitement.
Swimming produced a team state champion, while several individuals turned heads in track and field.
Now, boys' hockey's playoffs are underway as well.
Here's a glimpse:
The powerhouse Greely swim program excelled once again this winter and dazzled at states.
The boys repeated as champions by tallying 303 points, 56 better than runner-up Mt. Desert Island. Yarmouth (200) came in fourth, while Falmouth (188) was fifth.
The Rangers won just one event, the 400 freestyle relay, as Nathan Madeira, Andrew Coon, Jack Benoit and Jon Dunnett had a time of 3 minutes, 23.57 seconds. The 200 medley relay (Benoit, Griffin Fluet, Dunnett and Ryan Plante) was second to MDI in a time of 1:42.6 and the 200 free relay (Fred Bower, Coon, Madeira and Connor Russell) was also runner-up (to Camden Hills) in 1:35.75.
Individually, Dunnett was second in the 200 individual medley (2:00.75) and third in the 100 butterfly (53.8). Madeira came in third in the 500 free (5:15.17). Plante came in third in the 100 backstroke (58.89) and was sixth in the 50 freee (23.82). Fluet placed fourth in the 100 breaststroke (1:03.88) and came in fifth in the fly (55.67). Russell finished fifth in the 50 free (23.63) and was seventh in the 100 free (51.65). Benoit placed sixth in the backstroke (1;00.1) and seventh in the IM (2:13.05).
"The boys swam out of their suits in the morning trials to put to rest any doubt whether we could defend our championship," said longtime Greely coach Rob Hale. "We had huge time drops which turned into significantly better positions for the evening finals. We continued to swim well at night to defend our championship. We had 12 boys qualify for the meet and 10 qualified for the finals and scored. It was a win by committee. No other team could match the number of swimmers we had qualified for states, hence they couldn't match how many we put into the finals. Andrew Coon and Griffin Fluet were our performers of the meet. While we all had awesome performances, but Andrew and Griffin made our jaws drop."
The Clippers were led by Evan Coleman, who was the champion of the backstroke (53.84) and runner-up in the fly (53.28).
The Yachtsmen got a win from Jake Perron in the 500 free (4:43.88). Perron was third in the 200 free (1:47.35).
Greely's girls had 280 points, but were a close second to MDI (295.5) in their repeat bid. Yarmouth (108) placed seventh, Falmouth (95) was ninth, North Yarmouth Academy (46) tied St. Dom's for 16th.
Super senior Sarah Easterling, who will be swimming for the University of Arkansas next season, was named Performer of the Meet after taking the IM (2:04.85) and the backstroke (56.51). Hwanhee Park won the 500 free (5:18.66) and was third in the 200 free (1:58.41). Greely also took the medley relay (Katie Dransfield, Easterling, Park, Emily Domingo, 1:53.43).
"The girls matched the performances of the boys, but we were up against a restocked MDI team," Hale said. "MDI had an influx of talented freshmen to be the overwhelming favorite. Our morning swims put us in a position at night to challenge the Trojans, but while we matched them in splashes (swimmers qualifying at night), we couldn't match them in higher finishes. It was another wonderful team effort. Sarah Easterling was named Performer of the meet. She set two meet records and one state record. Her times qualify her to be considered as a possible All American."
The Clippers were led by Abby Belisle-Haley, who was fourth in the fly (1:02.38) and fifth in the IM (2:21.67).
The Yachtsmen got a win from diver Charlotte Janelle (289.40 points).
The Panthers featured Sonia Lin, who won the breaststroke (1:06.73) and was runner-up in the IM (2:14.22).
Greely's girls' track team came closest to a team title at last week's state meet. The Rangers wound up with 69.6 points, but that left them a distant second to Waterville (112). Freeport (18) came in seventh, Falmouth (17) was eighth, Yarmouth (3) tied Wells for 22nd and NYA (2) tied McAuley for 24th.
The Rangers got an individual win from Gwen Sawyer in the shot put (36 feet, 10.5 inches). Greely was second in the 3,200 relay (Julia Mitiguy, Susan Badrinas, Sarah Fitch, Jessica Wilson, 10:21.82), runner-up in the 800 relay (Brennah Martin, Mitiguy, Jocelyn Mitiguy and Hannah Keisman, 1:54.13) and had individual runner-up Kirstin Sandreuter in the mile (5:13.15) and in the two-mile (11:22.43). Keisman was third in the 55 hurdles (9.07 seconds). Jess Wilson came in third in the 800 (2:25.63). Julia Mitiguy finished fourth in the 400 (1:04.49). Sarah Ingraham placed fourth in the long jump (16 feet, 2.5 inches). Martin was sixth in the 200 (27.93). Kaley Sawyer tied for sixth in the high jump (4-8) and was sixth in the triple jump (33-8.5). Sophia McMonagle placed sixth in the pole vault (8-6), while Nina Oberg placed seventh in that event (8 feet).
"The girls continue their tradition of excellence over the last 23 years," said longtime Greely coach John Folan. "The sign of a good program in track is not always winning, as only one team can do that, but a tradition of consistent excellence and this team was no exception. We went into the meet with qualifiers in every single event and most of those scored in the meet, or at least improved their performances. After an undefeated conference season, this was a rewarding end to the season. Our kids continue to amaze me with their selfless dedication and growth and despite painful graduations this spring, the future still looks very good."
Freeport was led by its third-place 800 relay team (Meredith Broderick, Kelsey Grant, Hayley Steckler, Lexi Dietrich, 1:54.41). Individually, Dietrich was third in the 200 (27.5). Ciera Wentworth came in fourth in the mile (5:31.97) and seventh in the 800 (2:30.68). Steckler came in seventh in the 400 (1:05.25).
Falmouth was paced by Charlotte Cutshall, who placed third in the long jump (16-3.5) and fourth in the 55 (7.7). The 800 relay team (Maggie Seitz, Sarah Sparks, Caroline McKeen and Cutshall) came in fourth (1:55.00). The 3,200 relay (Cassie Darrow, Alexa Hoffman, Vishva Nalamalapu, Madeline Roberts) was fifth (10:47.3).
"The girls were pleased to reach their top 10 goal, led by Charlotte's big day in the long jump and 55, a pair of personal bests," said Yachtsmen coach Jorma Kurry. "Our relays ran well as well."
Yarmouth's points came from Emma Egan, who placed fifth in the high jump (4-10).
NYA's points came from Hannah Austin, who was sixth in the two-mile (12:08.76).
The boys' meet was won by York with 76 points. Falmouth (42) came in fourth, Greely (23) was seventh, Yarmouth (20) placed 10th, Freeport (12) tied Camden Hills for 13th. NYA didn't score.
The Yachtsmen got wins from Azad Jalali in the 800 (2:03.47) and Jacob Buhelt in the 200 (23.23). Falmouth's 3,200 relay team (Buhelt, Thomas Fortier, Andy Clement and Jalali) also came in first (1:36.6).
Buhelt was also runner-up in the 55 (6.71).Fortier placed fifth in the 55 (6.94). Bryce Murdick came in seventh in the two-mile (10:35.97).
"The boys ran well, led by individual wins from Jacob and Azad," Kurry said. "Azad's surprise win was a great way for him to finish his indoor career. The relay executed very well to close out the meet in exciting fashion for us. Thomas Fortier and Bryce Murdick also ran nice races to earn individual points as well."
The Rangers produced a shot put champion in James Ferrar (47-6). The 3,200 relay (Dan Ray, Troy Cochran, Ryan Morrison and Liam Campbell), seeded 11th, wound up second to York with a time of 8:45.23. Campbell was fourth in the mile (4:49.26). Spencer McCarthy came in seventh in the shot put (42-9.75).
"The boys' team significantly surpassed their seeds going in," Folan said. "Overall, it was a satisfying seventh place for the team in the meet."
The Clippers were led by Ben Decker, second in the two-mile (9:59.19). Also scoring were Wes Crawford (third in the 800, 2:07.68), Darren Shi (fifth in the shot put, 43-9.5), Travis Hamre (sixth in the 200, 24.34) and Thomas Robichaud (seventh in the pole vault, 10-6).
The Falcons got points from Harrison Stivers (second in the 400, 52.89; seventh in the 800, 2:10.15) and Abrin Berkemeyer (fifth in the mile, 4:50.88).
Defending Class B state champion Greely will be the top seed for the Western Class B boys' hockey playoffs. The Rangers finished 14-4 after a 7-1 win at Yarmouth last Wednesday. Greely got a bye into Friday's semifinals where it will meet either No. 4 Yarmouth (6-10-2) or No. 5 Cape Elizabeth (7-10-1) at the Colisee in Lewiston.
The Clippers and Capers (who squared off in the quarterfinals Tuesday) tied in their first meeting this winter, 2-2. Yarmouth took the second, 2-0.
The Western B Final is Wednesday of next week in Lewiston.
The Class B state final is Saturday, March at 1 p.m., in Lewiston.
In Western A, Falmouth wound up second at 14-3-1 after a 2-1 home loss to top-ranked Scarborough and a 3-3 home tie with Thornton Academy. The Yachtsmen hosted No. 7 Biddeford (7-10-1) in the quarterfinals Tuesday. Falmouth beat the Tigers twice this year, 7-2 away and 5-0 at home.
The semifinals are Saturday, regional finals Tuesday and state game Saturday, March 9 at 6 p.m. All of those rounds will be contested in Lewiston.