(Ed. Note: We recapped the basketball season in last week’s edition)
Winter sports fans had plenty of options the past few months. There was ample drama on the ice, slopes, trails, track, mat and in the pool.
Two local boys’ hockey teams made the playoffs. The Cheverus girls won the state title. Track, swimming, skiing and wrestling all produced highlights as well.
Here’s one final look at the 2009-10 winter sports season.
Michael’s Top Five stories:
5) Run ends for Cape Elizabeth boys’ hockey
The Cape Elizabeth boys’ hockey team has been a premier power for years, but this winter, for the first time in 13 seasons, the Capers failed to make the playoffs. Cape Elizabeth was actually a very competitive team, but was done in by injuries, a brutal schedules and bad luck in some close games. Western B rivals better hope they enjoyed the absence, since the Capers figure to return to prominence in 2010-11.
4) Attwood dominates ski trails again
Cape Elizabeth senior Nordic skiing star Emily Attwood capped her Maine high school career by winning both the classic and freestyle at the Class B state meet. Attwood’s efforts led the Capers to a fourth-place team finish. Attwood has been a four-year running and skiing standout and will take her act to Middlebury College next year.
3) Scarborough girls’ track does it again
The Scarborough girls’ indoor track program keeps on winning. On Feb. 15, the Red Storm edged Bonny Eagle by a point to win their sixth Class A crown in succession. Scarborough wasn’t as dominant as in past years, but the Red Storm rode their depth to the pinnacle. There’s no end in sight for the program’s dominance.
2) Scarborough swimmers steal show
While the Scarborough swim teams settled for a pair of runner-up finishes at the Class A state meet, a group of Red Storm individuals had fans buzzing. Senior Robby Gravel rewrote the record book, winning the 200 individual medley and the 100 breaststroke. Kip Gravel was tops in the 100 free. On the girls’ side, Laura Flewelling sparkled, winning both the 200 and 500 free. First-year coach Sean Flaherty, a former Scarborough legend, certainly had plenty of highlights to watch in his debut season.
1) South Portland hockey makes history
The South Portland boys’ hockey team had a special season in more ways than one this winter. Inspired by the courageous cancer battle being waged by sophomore Brendan Horton, the Red Riots overcame a 1-3 start by winning 13 of their final 14 contests to finish the regular season 14-4, good for the No. 4 seed in Western A. On the ropes in the quarterfinals against No. 5 Portland, South Portland scored two late goals to win, 3-2, just the second-ever playoff victory in program history. The Red Riots then made a first-ever trip to the semifinals in Lewiston, but lost, 7-2, to Biddeford, to end up 15-5. Joe Robinson was named Coach of the Year by his peers. With just about everyone returning next winter, South Portland could be in position to make even greater strides.
Sports Editor Michael Hoffer can be reached at email@example.com
Winter 2009-10 Northern edition state champions
Scarborough Red Storm, girls’ basketball, Class A
Scarborough Red Storm, girls’ indoor track, Class A
Winter 2009-10 Northern edition individual state champions
Kelsey Barton, Cape Elizabeth, girls’ two-mile, Class B
Rachel Nichols, Cape Elizabeth, girls’ mile, Class B
Leandre Some, Cape Elizabeth, boys’ triple jump, Class B
Laura Flewelling, Scarborough, girls’ 200 freeestyle, Class A
Laura Flewelling, Scarborough, girls’ 500 free, Class A
Kip Gravel, Scarborough, boys’ 100 free, Class A
Robby Gravel, Scarborough, boys’ 200 individual medley, Class A
Robby Gravel, Scarborough, boys’ 100 breaststroke, Class A
Emily Attwood, Cape Elizabeth, girls’ classic, Class B
Emily Attwood, Cape Elizabeth, girls’ freestyle, Class B
South Portland’s Brendan Horton showed tremendous courage and inspired his team this winter, returning to hockey after receiving cancer treatment.
Scarborough’s Jenny Snyder was third in the 55 hurdles at the Class A state meet, helping the Red Storm win their sixth straight state title.
Noah Backer and his Cape Elizabeth teammates finished fifth at the Class A state meet.