Farewell to a triumphant year, 2009 featured memories galore
Another fantastic year of high school sports drama has come and gone.
Local athletes kept us warm last winter, enthralled in the spring and dazzled in the fall.
With a new year upon us, let's look back once more to the thrills that made up 2009.
Track stars were big winners back in February as Brunswick's boys won a conference title and four individuals took state crowns. That group was led by Brunswick's Kristin Slotnick, who won the Class A 55, 55 hurdles and 400. Teammate Emily Hartzell took the pole vault. The boys' team produced a champion in Will Geoghegan (two-mile). Mt. Ararat's Colby Gail (high jump) also came in first.
In the pool, Morse's girls won a conference title. Shipbuilders boys' standout James Wells won the backstroke and butterfly individual crown, while Brunswick's Phillip Jacques took the breaststroke and individual medley.
Morse also had a wrestling champion (Tyler Russell, 171-pounds).
Brunswick's boys' hockey team made it to the playoffs and lost to eventual state champion Waterville in the Eastern A quarterfinals. The Brunswick girls competed in the inaugural season under the auspices of the Maine Principals' Association.
On the hardwood, every local team but the Brunswick boys and Morse girls made the playoffs, but none made it past the quarterfinals. The Morse boys lost to Mt. Blue, Mt. Ararat was eliminated by regional champion Edward Little and Hyde fell to St. Dom's. The Brunswick girls were ousted by Oxford Hills, Mt. Ararat was sent packing by Edward Little and Hyde fell to Hall-Dale.
For the second year in a row, the Brunswick girls' lacrosse team stole the spring headlines by beating Kennebunk to win the Class A title. The Dragons boys also reached the state game, but lost to Portland.
Track was once again a great stage for local athletes as Brunswick's Slotnick took the Class A individual title in the 100, 200 and 400 and Gail of Mt. Ararat won the high jump.
Mt. Ararat's Mike Hill won the boys' state individual tennis title once again. Morse's girls' team made it to the Eastern A Final before losing to Lewiston. The Brunswick boys suffered the same fate.
The Brunswick and Mt. Ararat baseball and softball squads enjoyed runs to the playoffs.
High schoolers took a backseat, but there were plenty of diversions for local sports fans. Little League and American Legion players strutted their stuff. Many local runners made their mark in the Beach to Beacon in early August. A couple weeks later, high school athletes reported to fall practice and it was time to do it all over again.
Brunswick's girls' soccer was the big winner in the fall, downing Thornton Academy to win the Class A championship. The Brunswick boys also made it to the state game, but lost a one-goal decision to Scarborough.
Brunswick's football team made it to the Eastern A Final before losing to Bangor. Morse's quest for a repeat Eastern B title was denied by Gardiner in the semifinals.
Mt. Ararat was the lone field hockey team to make the playoffs.
On the trails, Brunswick's boys and Mt. Ararat's girls won regional crowns. The Dragons were led by the incomparable Will Geoghegan, who won the regional and state individual title.
Brunswick's golf team got to the state match and came in seventh
Winter is back (big-time) and we're doing it all over again. Many of the storylines are similar.
So farewell to 2009. Quite a memorable and triumphant year you were. Now we welcome 2010 and a new batch of thrills.