Stretch run begins as January ends
The winter sports season is rapidly coming to a close and once we dig out from all this snow, the final chapter of the regular season should be memorable.
The girls' hockey regular season comes to an end this week, while basketball culminates a week from Friday. It won't be long until swimming, track, skiing and wrestling's postseasons begin as well.
Here's a glimpse at where things stand as January gives way to February.
South Portland's boys' basketball team remains a top threat to undefeated, reigning Class A champion Portland. Friday, the Red Riots improved to 12-2 after a 76-59 home win over Windham. Jaren Muller went off for 30 points. Jack Fiorini added 15 and Matt Pelletier finished with 11. South Portland (third behind Portland and Falmouth in the Western A Heal Points standings) was at Gorham Wednesday, hosts Deering Friday, plays host to Portland Tuesday and closes the regular season at Cheverus Feb. 5.
Scarborough, three days after almost upsetting Portland, took talented host Deering to the wire before losing, 77-73, Friday. Sam Freeman had 25 points, Milani Hicks 20 and Jake Gardner 13 in defeat. The Red Storm (7-8 and ninth in Western A) hosted Cheverus Wednesday, visit Sanford Friday and close at home versus Thornton Academy Tuesday.
In Western B, Cape Elizabeth took a seven-game win streak to Poland Wednesday. Friday, the Capers prevailed at York, 66-52, behind 18 points from Jack O'Rourke and 17 from Ethan Murphy. Cape Elizabeth (11-2 and fourth in the Heals) hosts Fryeburg Academy, visits Greely Friday and Falmouth Tuesday, then closes at home versus Greely Feb. 5.
In Western D, Greater Portland Christian School was 3-9 and 16th (only 12 teams make the playoffs) following a 51-34 home loss to Sacopee Valley Monday. The Lions hosted Temple Academy Wednesday, visit North Haven Friday, go to Seacoast Christian Monday and close at defending Western C champion Waynflete Feb. 4.
On the girls' side, South Portland extended its win streak to four Friday with a 76-60 win at Windham. Maddie Hasson had a transcendent 38-point performance to spark the victory. Lydia Henderson added 14. The Red Riots (11-3 and fifth in the Western Class A Heal Points standings) hosted Gorham in a pivotal showdown Wednesday, play host to Portland in their home finale Friday, go to Cheverus Tuesday and close the regular season at Scarborough Feb. 5.
The Red Storm were eighth at 7-7 after Friday's 42-35 home loss to Deering. Ashley Briggs had 12 points and Brooke Malone added 10 in the defeat. Scarborough was at Cheverus Wednesday, hosts Sanford Friday, visits Thornton Academy Tuesday and closes at home versus South Portland Feb. 5.
In Western B, Cape Elizabeth was clinging to the 10th and final playoff spot at press time. Friday, the Capers lost at home to York, 60-46, to fall to 8-5. Montana Braxton had 17 points and Hannah Sawyer added 13 in the defeat. Cape Elizabeth hosted Poland Wednesday, visits Fryeburg Academy Friday and Greely Saturday, welcomes Falmouth Tuesday and closes at home versus Greely Feb. 5.
In Western D, GPCS was 2-8 and 15th (only 11 teams make the playoffs) after Friday's 29-20 victory at Hebron Academy. The Lions were home against Temple Academy Wednesday, visit North Haven Friday, play at Seacoast Christian Monday and close at Waynflete Feb. 4.
Scarborough's boys' hockey team was 7-4-2 and ranked third in the Western A Heals behind two-time defending state champion Falmouth and Cheverus heading into a home showdown against Cape Elizabeth Saturday.
South Portland was in the No. 6 spot at 7-4 heading into Friday's game at Lake Region.
In Western B, Cape Elizabeth was 7-4 and fifth heading into Wednesday's game at Kennebunk. The Capers hosted Biddeford Thursday and play at Scarborough Saturday.
On the girls' side, defending state champion Scarborough has the inside track for the top seed in the West Region. The Red Storm (10-3-1) were supposed to host Capeflete Saturday, but that game was postponed by snow. Scarborough was at second-ranked Falmouth for a pivotal showdown Wednesday, hosts Capeflete in a makeup game Friday and closes at Cheverus Saturday.
The Cape Elizabeth/Waynflete/South Portland co-op team was 7-8 and fifth in the West entering Wednesday's home tilt versus York. Capeflete is at Scarborough Friday and closes at home versus Biddeford Saturday.
Last week's Southwestern Maine Activities Association regular season finale indoor track meet was canceled by snow.
Cape Elizabeth competed in a nine-team Western Maine Conference meet. The boys were third and the girls placed fourth. The boys got a win from Mitchell Morris in the open two-mile (9 minutes, 38.91 seconds). The girls got a win from Samantha Feenstra in the open mile (5:44.39). Kristen Penley took the junior high jump (4 feet, 8 inches). Morgan Carpenter was first in the senior high jump (4-10) and the open triple jump (31-10.75). Eva Brydson won the open 800 (2:28.92).
Friday, in the regular season finale, Cape Elizabeth will take part in the late meet, along with Fryeburg Academy, Lake Region, NYA, Poland, St. Dom's Traip and Wells.
The WMC championship meet will be contested Friday, Feb. 6. The SMAA championship meet, better known as Southwesterns, will be held Saturday, Feb. 7.
Cape Elizabeth's boys swim team beat Deering last weekend, 104-55, while the girls lost to the Rams, 89-87. The Capers are home against Cheverus Friday and host Gorham Tuesday.
Scarborough's girls defeated McAuley, 124-46. The boys were idle. Friday, the Red Storm go to Greely. Tuesday, they host Falmouth.
South Portland's boys defeated Greely, 96-63, while the girls lost to the Rangers, 101-80. The Red Riots close at Falmouth Friday.
The North Division Southwesterns are Feb. 6-7.
Scarborough's boys and girls both were first at a six-team Alpine giant slalom meet last Friday at Shawnee Peak. Individually, the boys were led by Nathaniel Gehrke, who was fourth with a two-run combined time of 1 minute, 1.07 seconds. The fastest girl was Sarah Hassler (fifth, 1:09.52).
Monday, Cape Elizabeth's girls were first and the boys second at a combined Western Maine Conference/Southwestern Maine Activities GS meet at Shawnee Peak. The girls had the top three finishers: Emma Landes (59.87 seconds), Caroline Paclat (59.92) and Emma Dvorozniak (1:01.37). The boys were paced by Jon Fiutak (second, 57.24).
Scarborough's wrestling team was home against Windham Wednesday, then closes the regular season Saturday at Deering.
The regional championships are Saturday, Feb. 7 and the state meet is Saturday, Feb. 14.