Spring sports season off to promising start-Northern edition

  • Mail this page!
  • Delicious
  • 0

(Ed. Note: For the complete Falmouth-Cape Elizabeth and Greely-Wells baseball, Falmouth-South Portland, Yarmouth-Cape Elizabeth and Yarmouth-Brunswick boys’ lacrosse and Falmouth-Waynflete and Falmouth-Thornton Academy girls’ lacrosse game stories, with photos, see theforecaster.net)

Early returns are promising for spring sports teams. With everyone now underway, here’s a glimpse at what’s happened and what’s to come. 

Baseball

Falmouth’s baseball team is living up to billing as a title contender. After opening with a 14-0 five-inning win over visiting Poland behind Cam Guarino’s no-hitter, last week, the Yachtsmen improved to 4-0 by winning at Kennebunk (5-3), at Cape Elizabeth (8-2) and at home over Freeport (11-2). Against the Capers, Falmouth took advantage of eight errors, got three hits from Colin Coyne, three runs from Connor Aube, a key double from Griffin Aube and Guarino improved to 2-0 after allowing no earned runs on six hits and four walks in a complete game performance.

“I threw a few more balls than I usually throw,” said Guarino, who improved to 14-2 in his high school career. “My curveball was a little iffy in spots, but everything was OK.”

“Cam’s been pretty consistent throughout his career,” Coyne said. “We trust him and want to help him out.”

“We got things going today,” added Yachtsmen coach Kevin Winship. “I thought we hit the ball really well, hit it hard. We took advantage of some of their mistakes. We were happy to capitalize on them.” 

Against the Falcons, Connor Aube, singled, tripled and homered, Jesse Melchiskey had two hits and three RBI, Chris Camelio and Robbie Armitage added two hits apiece and Reece Armitage improved to 2-0 after striking out 10. Falmouth was at Fryeburg Academy Tuesday, visited Gray-New Gloucester Wednesday, hosts two-time defending Class B champion Greely Friday (see theforecaster.net for game story) and plays at Lake Region Tuesday of next week.

Greely also started in perfect fashion, beating visiting Fryeburg Academy (15-2, in five-innings), host Lake Region (7-1) and visiting Wells Friday, 4-3, to improve to 3-0. The Rangers fell behind, 1-0, early to the Warriors, but after a pair of terrific defensive plays in the top of the third, the Rangers parlayed that momentum into the tying run in the bottom half when Justin Leeman went the other way with two strikes and delivered an RBI single to make it 1-1.

Greely continued to take advantage of mistakes and scored three more runs in the fourth, to seemingly seize control, as Cal Soule scored on a passed ball, Ryan Twitchell came home on an error and Dylan Fried singled to right to score Matt Pisini. That score held until the seventh, when Leeman replaced spot starter Brad Spoerri, but he couldn’t get an out, loading the bases. Enter Twitchell, last year’s state game hero, who capped his solid afternoon by allowing two runs while leaving the tying run at second as the Rangers held on to prevail, 4-3.

Fried and Twitchell had two hits apiece and Spoerri earned his first victory.

“I knew we had a three-run lead, so I just had to get outs,” Twitchell said. “I knew if I threw strikes, my fielders would make plays. We know we have to bear down late in close games and play like we do any other inning. We can’t make errors or let them get extra bases.”

“I have seven guys out there who started on a state championship team,” said Rangers coach Derek Soule. “They can deal with the tough situations. I think it’s a good group. They’re confident and they have high baseball IQs. It’s fun group to work with.”

Greely hosted Yarmouth in a playoff rematch Tuesday, went to York Wednesday, visits Falmouth Friday and plays host to Kennebunk Monday.

Yarmouth took a 4-0 record into Tuesday’s showdown at Greely. The Clippers, who opened with wins at Wells (4-2, in eight innings) and at home over Freeport (4-1), blanked visiting Fryeburg Academy (9-0) last Thursday and held on for an 8-5 win at Gray-New Gloucester Friday. Against the Raiders, Luke Klenda threw a one-hitter and struck out 11. Andrew Kinsman added a pair of hits and Jack Snyder had two RBI. Yarmouth let a 4-0 lead slip away against the Patriots, but they scored four runs in the top of the seventh to prevail. Joe DeFusco and Chris Romano both drove in two runs, Snyder and Gibson Harnett both scored twice. Kinsman allowed just one earned run in seven innings to earn the win. The Clippers were at Lake Region Wednesday, host Poland Friday and welcome Wells Monday of next week.

Freeport opened with a 2-0 home win over Lake Region, then lost at Yarmouth (4-1), York (11-1) and Falmouth (11-2). Caleb Rice had a pair of hits against the Yachtsmen. The Falcons hoped to return to the win column Tuesday at home versus Kennebunk and Wednesday at home against Cape Elizabeth. Freeport is at Old Orchard Beach Saturday and visits Fryeburg Academy Monday.

North Yarmouth Academy started by beating visiting Richmond (3-2) and Temple Academy (25-4, in five-innings), then lost last week at Sacopee Valley (7-3) and at Traip Academy (9-1). After going to Greater Portland Christian School Tuesday, the Panthers play at Waynflete Friday and again on Monday.

Softball

Yarmouth’s softball team is discovering that defending a state title won’t come easily. The Clippers, who beat visiting Freeport in the opener (15-2, in five innings), let a 2-0 seventh inning lead slip away in a 4-3 home loss to Fryeburg Academy in a regional final rematch last Thursday, then held off host Traip Academy, 6-3, Friday to improve to 2-1. In the loss, Mari Cooper and Cayte Tillotson both had two hits and Cate Ralph, Colleen Sullivan and Sydney St. Pierre drove in runs, but Yarmouth left the bases loaded in the bottom of the seventh and fell by one. In the victory, Ralph had three hits, including a triple, and drove in three, Tillotson and Andrea St. Pierre had RBI and Cooper earned the victory, leaving the bases loaded in the bottom of the seventh. She also drove in a run. Monday’s showdown/playoff rematch at Greely was postponed by rain to Tuesday (see theforecaster.net for game story). The Clippers were at Lake Region Wednesday, host Poland Friday and welcome Wells Monday.

Greely is off to a fast start. The Rangers opened by earning dramatic late home wins over Fryeburg Academy (2-1) and Wells (7-4). Against the Warriors, Greely trailed 2-0, 3-2 and 4-3, but scored four times in the sixth, as Miranda Eisenhart (who had three hits) and Evan Carrell had RBI doubles and Kelsey Currier clinched it with a two-run home run. Greely hosted Yarmouth Tuesday, went to York Wednesday, plays at Falmouth Friday and plays host to Kennebunk Monday.

Falmouth opened with wins over visiting Poland (15-3, in five innings) and host Kennebunk (11-7), then, after rallying for three seventh inning runs to pull even, lost at Cape Elizabeth, 5-4. Maddie Rouhana had two hits and Allison Murphy tied the game with a clutch base hit. Friday, the Yachtsmen improved to 3-1 with a 4-1 home victory over Freeport, as Julia Treadwell did it all, hitting a two-run homer and throwing a two-hitter with 12 strikeouts. After playing a makeup game at Fryeburg Academy Tuesday and visiting Gray-New Gloucester Wednesday, Falmouth hosts Greely Friday and goes to Lake Region Monday.

Freeport rallied for an 8-7 home win over Lake Region in its opener, then, after a 15-2 (five inning) loss at Yarmouth, fell at York (17-0, in five innings) and Falmouth (4-1). Lauren Briggs had the Falcons’ lone hit against Wildcats ace Stephanie Rundlett. Morgan Karnes had an RBI double against the Yachtsmen. Freeport hosted Kennebunk Tuesday and Cape Elizabeth Wednesday, plays at Old Orchard Beach Saturday and visits Fryeburg Academy Monday.

Boys’ lacrosse

Don’t look now, but Falmouth’s boys’ lacrosse team might be best equipped to end Cape Elizabeth’s three-year run as Class B state champion. The Yachtsmen were 4-0 at press time, having scored 66 goals so far. After opening with a 19-6 home win over Freeport, Falmouth downed visiting Kennebunk (10-5), then pulled away to crush visiting two-time defending Western A champion South Portland (21-10). Against the Rams, Jack Scribner scored four times. Scribner added six goals against the Red Riots and got plenty of help, as George Gilbert had five goals, Devin Russell added four and Lou Mainella finished with three. Spencer Pierce won a mindboggling 26 of 34 faceoffs. The Yachtsmen only led, 9-6, in the third period, then erupted for 11 goals in just under seven minutes to end all doubt.

“We work harder than any team I’ve seen in practice and it shows on the field,” Scribner said. “We executed our man-up today.”

“It was good to help out my team today,” Pierce said. “It speaks to what we have going here at Falmouth and what we’re trying to build. Coach (Mike LeBel) has put together so many good teams. It’s a pleasure to be part of one.”

It’s always good to beat a strong team,” added LeBel. “(South Portland’s) well-coached, a strong team with good players. We have our philosophy and tried to stay with that and we did. We didn’t panic.” 

Russell and Scribner had four goals apiece against NYA in the rain, while Gilbert added three goals of his own. The Yachtsmen visit Yarmouth for a key showdown Thursday night (see theforecaster.net for game story), then have five days off before the first of a likely three showdowns versus Cape Elizabeth Wednesday of next week (on the Capers’ turf).

Yarmouth beat visiting York, 14-3, in its opener, then had to play both defending state champions last week and fell short, losing to Cape Elizabeth (15-5) and Brunswick (11-7). Against the Capers, Bill Jacobs scored three times and the Clippers only trailed, 7-4, entering the fourth quarter, but Cape Elizabeth erupted for eight goals.

“I think we were really competitive in the first half,” Yarmouth coach David Pearl said. “I saw a lot of great things out of this team tonight. We know we can play with (Cape). I look forward to seeing these guys again in a month.”

The Clippers possessed the ball almost the whole first period against Brunswick, but came out of it trailing, 2-1, and never could quite catch up. Goalie Cameron Libby made 15 saves and Matthew Beatty scored three goals, but Yarmouth fell short.

“We had a lot of opportunities, but it’s a game of inches,” Pearl lamented. “Missed opportunities means the momentum can go a different way. I felt like our guys played hard the whole time. Some things didn’t go our way.”

Yarmouth hoped to bounce back Tuesday at Greely. After playing host to Falmouth Thursday, the Clippers are at rival NYA Tuesday of next week. 

Greely won its first two outings, downing NYA in a “home game” moved to NYA’s turf due to bad weather, 7-3, then dominating visiting Lake Region, 19-3. Sam Peck had three goals against the Panthers. Connor Wyman had a game-high six goals versus the Lakers. The Rangers had a key test Tuesday when they hosted Yarmouth. An even more daunting challenge awaits Saturday when Cape Elizabeth pays a visit.

Freeport began with losses at Falmouth (19-6) and Fryeburg Academy (13-6), then got in the win column Saturday at Morse, 11-6. Zac Wogan made 19 saves and Eli Fox had three goals in the victory. The Falcons were home with Wells Tuesday, host York Saturday and welcome Waynflete Tuesday of next week.

NYA won, 10-4, at Gardiner in its opener, then fell to Greely, 7-3, in a “road game” played on the Panthers’ turf due to bad weather. Thomas Pitts had two goals against the Rangers. Monday, NYA fell to 1-2 after a 16-0 home loss to Falmouth. The Panthers host Kennebunk Friday and welcome Yarmouth Tuesday of next week.

Girls’ lacrosse

On the girls’ side, Falmouth is off to a fast and impressive start. The Yachtsmen opened by downing visiting Freeport, 16-5, then pulled away to beat visiting Waynflete in a playoff rematch, 17-6, before holding on at Thornton Academy Saturday morning, 9-8. Against the Flyers, junior standout Sydney Bell had a game for the ages, scoring seven goals, adding six assists, winning 20 of 25 draws and collecting a game-high 18 ground balls. Olivia Stucker had a career-high seven goals of her own.

“Waynflete is always a top team,” Bell said. “We don’t have their history. Even though we’ve beaten them, we don’t underestimate them.”

“(Sydney and I) just had a connection today,” said Stucker. “It really clicked today. We saw it with other teammates too.”

“It was a little slow at the beginning,” added Falmouth coach Kait Johnson. “We had to get the jitters out. The girls worked well together. They’re selfless players.”

The Yachtsmen got a character test against the Golden Trojans and passed it. The game was tied, 7-7, with just over eight minutes left, but after one of 10 clutch saves by goalie Mary Budri, Bell threw a long pass to Devon Sarazin for the go-ahead goal.

“We knew we needed that goal,” Sarazin said. “We like to have someone down there. We know that position will be open sometimes. Syd knew where to pass.”

Bell added another goal (her fifth) and Budri held Thornton Academy off down the stretch to allow Falmouth to hold on. 

“That was really scary,” Budri said. “They really wanted it, but we picked it up the last few minutes to get the win.”

“I think (in the second half) some of the calls were getting in our head,” Bell said. “It was getting a little messy. We held them off, so it was OK.”

“This is so good for us, especially early in the season,” added Johnson. “We’ll be facing high-intensity situations later in the season. The girls realized they had to come together and they did that.”

Falmouth had another road test Wednesday, at dangerous York. The Yachtsmen visit Cape Elizabeth Friday, then come home Tuesday to battle NYA.

Two-time defending Class B champion Yarmouth bounced back from its season-opening 8-7 home loss to York with an 11-6 win at Cape Elizabeth last Wednesday, thanks to four goals from Jess Kirk and three apiece from Greta Elder and Eliza Lunt. The Clippers were home with Freeport Wednesday, visit NYA Saturday (see theforecaster.net for game story) and welcome Greely Wednesday of next week.

NYA was a 14-7 winner at Mt. Ararat in its opener, then lost at home to Greely, 13-7, despite three goals from Isabelle Coleman. The Panthers hosted Lake Region Tuesday, welcome McAuley Thursday (see theforecaster.net for game story) and play host to Yarmouth Saturday before going to Falmouth Tuesday of next week.

Freeport dropped its opener at Falmouth, 16-5, then got in the win column by virtue of a 15-7 home triumph over Fryeburg Academy. Chloe Davidson had three goals and Courtney Broderick had two goals (to go with eight assists) in the win. The Falcons were at Yarmouth Wednesday, host Waynflete Saturday and visit Wells Wednesday of next week.

Greely started with a 13-7 win at NYA (Meghan O’Donovan had a team-high three goals), then lost at home to Lake Region (10-7) and at Massabesic (12-8). Kelsey Otley had three goals versus the Lakers. Otley, Katherine Leggat-Barr, Courtney Sullivan and Mariah Belisle all had two goals in the loss at the Mustangs. The Rangers hosted Cape Elizabeth Wednesday, go to defending Western B champion Kennebunk Friday and visit Yarmouth Wednesday of next week. 

Outdoor track

The outdoor track and field regular season began last week.

Greely’s boys and girls both placed first in a five-team meet at Wells. The boys got wins from Ryan Morrison in the 800 (2 minutes, 4.33 seconds), Chris Perry in the 300 hurdles (44.66 seconds), Sam Bonnevie in the pole vault (10 feet) and javelin (139-7), Ian Cameron in the discus (113-1) and their 4×100 relay team (47.30). Girls’ first-place finishers included Siana Emery in the racewalk (8:00.53), Carolyn Todd in the mile (5:32.39) and two-mile (11:53.56), Lauren Williams in the high jump (5-0) and Skylar Cooney in the 100 hurdles (17.89) and the 300 hurdles (52.22).

Freeport and Yarmouth took part in a five-team meet at Fryeburg. The Clippers boys and girls both came in third. The Falcons boys’ were fourth and the girls came in fifth. In the girls’ meet, Yarmouth got wins from Emma Egan in the 100 (13.28), high jump (5-5) and long jump (15-0.5), Anneka Murrin in the 800 (2:23.59) and Abby Hamilton in the mile (5:25.53). Freeport’s 4×800 relay was first in 11:41.10. In the boys’ competition, the Clippers got first-place showings from Tahj Garvey in the 400 (52.68), Luke Laverdiere in the mile (4:23.03) and Ian Murrin the shot put (37-10.75) and discus (124-9). The Falcons got a win from Henry Jaques in the two-mile (10:09.16).

Falmouth’s boys and girls were both first at a four-team meet hosted by Poland. The boys got wins from Aaron Thomas in the pole vault (12-0), Tony St. Angelo in the high jump (6-0), Ted Pierson in the discus (124-3), Noah Martin in the 100 (11.3), Nick Sanzari in the 200 (23.10), Matt Polewaczyk in the 400 (54.30), Nigel Dunn in the 100 hurdles (17.40) and 300 hurdles (43.7), Josh Simensky in the 800 (2:09.0), Sean Soucy in the mile (4:49.0), Jeremiah Sands in the two-mile (9:52.0) and their 400 (45.50) and 1,600 (3:46.0) relay teams. Girls’ winners included Chelsea Zhao in the pole vault (8 feet), Lydia Farmer in the long jump (16-5) and triple jump (33-3), Danielle Casavant in the high jump (4-10), Madison Tait in the shot put (28-8) and discus (110-4), Tyler Spence in the javelin (73-10), Sara Toplavic in the 400 (1:08.0), Malaika Pasch in the 800 (2:24.0), Hannah Donovan in the mile (6:08.0), Meghan Charest in the racewalk (10:02.0) and the 4×100 (53.3), 4×400 (4:29.0) and 4×800 (11:48.0) relay teams.

Tennis

Falmouth’s girls’ tennis team, the eight-time defending state champion, opened with 5-0 wins over Kennebunk and Cape Elizabeth. The two-time defending Class A champion boys’ squad did the same. The boys host eight-time defending Class C champion Waynflete Friday.

Greely’s two-time defending Class B champion girls’ squad opened by beating Freeport (5-0), York (4-1) and Kennebunk (4-1). The Rangers go to Cape Elizabeth Saturday and visit Falmouth Monday. Greely’s boys lost to Freeport, York and Kennebunk by 5-0 scores.

NYA’s defending Class C champion girls beat Freeport (4-1) and rival Waynflete (3-2) to start. The Panthers hosted Cape Elizabeth in a makeup match Tuesday and welcome Yarmouth Friday. NYA’s boys lost by 5-0 margins defending champions Cape Elizabeth and Waynflete and beat Freeport, 4-1.

Yarmouth’s girls’ squad beat Waynflete (4-1), then lost to York (3-2). The Clippers boys lost to Waynflete 4-1) and York (3-2). 

Freeport’s girls started with losses to Greely (5-0) and NYA (4-1), then beat Lake Region (5-0). The Falcons boys opened with a 4-1 loss to NYA.

Sports Editor Michael Hoffer can be reached at mhoffer@theforecaster.net. Follow him on Twitter: @foresports.

Sidebar Elements


Greely third baseman Ryan Twitchell makes a momentum-altering, diving play during the Rangers’ 4-3 win over Wells Friday. Twitchell also earned the save.

Yarmouth’s Matthew Beatty scores an early goal against Brunswick in the Clippers’ 11-7 home loss Saturday.

Falmouth standout Sydney Bell fights her way through traffic during the Yachtsmen’s 9-8 win at Thornton Academy Saturday. Bell had 17 goals in three games and Falmouth was off to a 3-0 start at press time.

NYA’s Hunter Mahoney returns a shot during last week’s 5-0 loss to eight-time defending Class C champion Waynflete.

0
Sports Editor of The Forecaster since 2001. Find detailed game stories at theforecaster.net. I tweet prodigiously at @foresports.