The weather heated up last week and so did the spring sports action.
With the end of the regular season right around the corner, teams are jockeying for playoff spots and positioning and there figures to be plenty of excitement in store.
Here’s a glimpse at what occurred last week and what’s upcoming:
All four city baseball teams are very much in the playoff picture.
Portland won its first nine games this spring, capped by victories last week over visiting Marshwood (3-0) and at Cheverus (8-1). Against the Hawks, RBI hits from Dom Tocci and John Williams produced a 2-0 first inning lead and late in the game, Nick Archambault, who also had a gorgeous diving catch, hit a home run to deliver the punctuation mark. Dan Marzilli went the distance, allowing just five hits, to earn the victory.
“These are the games we should win and the games we have to win for the playoffs,” said Archambault.
“I felt really good today,” said Marzilli. “I didn’t try to overthrow pitches. I tried to attack the batters. I trust my fielders.”
In the win over the Stags, Portland struck out seven times the first time through the order against freshman flame-thrower Tre Fletcher, but Charles Barnard pitched well and a pair of stolen bases from Williams sparked the offense. Barnard’s RBI single put the Bulldogs on top to stay in the fourth inning. Barnard allowed just one run on four hits and had three hits and three RBI of his own.
“We knew we’d have a tough game today,” Williams said. “We just played our game like we always do. We picked each other up. We have the attitude that we’re the best team and we’re showing it.”
“We knew it would be a challenge coming in, but we’re late inning heroes,” Barnard said. “Team chemistry is a big part of it.”
“We ran the bases to score runs and had timely hits,” added Portland coach Mike Rutherford. “We’re playing good baseball.”
The Bulldogs finally met their match Saturday at Bonny Eagle, losing, 9-2, to fall to 9-1 on the year. Jake Knop had a tremendous game in defeat, homering, doubling and singling. Marzilli took the loss and fell to 4-1 on the year. Portland (fourth in the Class A South Heal Points standings at press time) was at Thornton Academy Tuesday, hosts South Portland in a regional final rematch Saturday (see theforecaster.net for game story) and welcomes Deering for the rivals’ lone regular season showdown Monday night at 7 (see theforecaster.net for game story).
Deering was slumping at press time, having dropped five straight to fall to 4-6 and ninth in Class A South. Last week, the Rams lost at home to Scarborough and former coach Mike D’Andrea (7-1), at South Portland (4-3) and at Gorham (4-0). Deering fell behind early against the Red Storm and despite two hits from Dom Bernard and an RBI from Ian Westphal, stranded 11 runners and fell short.
“We had one really bad inning that came back to haunt us,” Stowell said. “We haven’t gotten the run support we need. We haven’t strung hits together.”
Against the Red Riots, Orey Dutton had two hits and Colby Dame was the hard-luck loser. Deering only managed to hits at Gorham. The Rams return to action Friday when Cheverus pays a visit. Deering plays Portland Monday night.
Cheverus’ skid hit three last week with losses at Bonny Eagle (9-5) and at home to Portland (8-1). Against the Scots, the Stags let a 4-0 lead slip away as they committed four errors. Josh Veroneau drove in two runs. In the loss to the Bulldogs, freshman Tre Fletcher struck out 10, including seven in the first three innings, but despite three hits from Jack Casale, the Stags scored just once.
“Our pitching has been fantastic all year, but we had very poor at-bats today,” Cheverus coach Mac McKew said. “We just didn’t hit. We were lucky to have a run.”
The Stags bounced back Saturday and improved to 5-4 and eighth in Class A South with a 6-3 home victory over Westbrook. Cheverus was at Scarborough Monday, visits Noble Thursday and Deering Friday and plays host to Thornton Academy Tuesday of next week.
In Class C South, Waynflete was 3-5 and 13th following an 11-4 home loss to North Yarmouth Academy and a 10-0 (five inning) home setback to Traip Academy. The Flyers were at Traip Monday, host Old Orchard Beach Wednesday and visit Sacopee Valley Monday of next week.
If the softball season ended today, only Portland would be playoff-bound and even that isn’t a sure thing.
Last week, the Bulldogs lost at home to Noble (7-2) and Scarborough (14-2), beat Deering (11-5), then lost, 7-1, at Massabesic. Morgan Boyle had two hits against the Knights. In the victory, Boyle singled twice, tripled and scored two runs and Grace Stacey had a had a two-run double.
“We’re playing pretty well so far,” said Portland coach Robbie Ferrante. “We’ve already exceeded last year’s win total. There are still a lot of things we need to do better.”
The Bulldogs (5-5 and 12th in Class A South, where only 12 teams make the playoffs) were home against Marshwood Monday, host Biddeford Wednesday and Deering Friday (see theforecaster.net for game story), then visit Gorham Monday of next week.
McAuley was 3-7 and 14th at the start of the week after beating visiting Bonny Eagle (8-7) and Cheverus (19-7, in five innings) and falling at defending regional champion Scarborough (15-0, in five innings) last week. Gabby Begos, Elizabeth Kennedy and Chelsea Rairdon all homered against the Scots. Ashley Littlefield earned the win. In the final “Holy War” against the Stags, Rairdon had three hits and three RBI and Jill Joyce homered. Lillie Donovan had a bases clearing double and Littlefield picked up the victory. The Lions were at Thornton Academy Monday, host Sanford Wednesday, welcome Windham Friday and visit South Portland Monday of next week.
Deering began the week 2-8 and 17th after losses at Windham (17-0, in five innings), at home against Portland (11-5) and at home to Biddeford (29-10, in six innings) extended its skid to five games. Cassidy Coyne singled and tripled against the Bulldogs. Coyne and Kaytlin DiBiase both had three hits in the loss to the Tigers. The Rams were at South Portland Monday, host Thornton Academy Wednesday, visit Portland Friday and play at Massabesic Monday of next week.
Cheverus fell to 0-10 and 18th last week with losses at Marshwood (13-1, in six innings), at McAuley (19-7, in five innings) and at home to Windham (20-4, in six innings). Ally Tillotson had two doubles against the Hawks. Sophia Giancotti and Jill Hannigan had two hits apiece in the loss to the Lions. Izzy Santoro had two hits against the Eagles. The Stags were at Biddeford Monday, visit Bonny Eagle Wednesday, host Westbrook Friday and play at Noble Monday of next week.
Cheverus’ boys’ lacrosse team’s win streak hit five games last week after a 15-1 home victory over Bonny Eagle. Mackenzie Hoglund led the way with three goals. Saturday, the fun ended with an 11-9 loss at Greely, as the Stags let an 8-5 second half lead slip away. Frankie Curran scored six times, but it wasn’t enough.
“We lost our discipline,” Cheverus coach Bill Bodwell said. “Greely’s a good team. They’re tenacious. They play tough lacrosse.”
The Stags (5-2 and fifth in the Class A North Heal Points standings) hosted Scarborough Tuesday (see theforecaster.net for game story) and go to Noble Friday.
Deering was 2-4 and seventh in Class A North after an 18-10 loss at Scarborough and a 16-1 home win over Oak Hill. Andrew Johnson and Bryce Randall both scored three times against the Red Storm. The Rams hosted Bonny Eagle Tuesday, welcome two-time defending Western A champion South Portland Friday and play host to Massabesic Tuesday of next week.
Portland was 4-4 and was eighth in Class A North (where only seven teams qualify for the playoffs) after losses last week to visiting Thornton Academy (14-3) and Edward Little (9-5). The Bulldogs are at Bonny Eagle Friday and visit South Portland Tuesday of next week.
In Class B South, Waynflete began the week 4-3 and fifth after a 17-5 win at Freeport and a 13-9 setback at Gorham. Will Nelligan scored seven times in the victory. The Flyers hosted NYA Tuesday, welcome three-time defending Eastern B champion Yarmouth Friday and go to Wells Tuesday of next week.
Waynflete’s girls’ team lost by decisive margins to powerhouses Falmouth and Kennebunk earlier this season, but the Flyers are hitting their stride. Last week, Waynflete downed visiting Fryeburg Academy (15-2) and host Cheverus (18-4) to improve to 5-2 and fifth in the Class B South Heal Points standings. Laura Baginski, Izzy Burdick, Elisabeth Lualdi, LZ Olney and Christian Rowe all had two goals against the Raiders. Rowe scored five goals and Burdick added three with three assists in the victory over the Stags. The Flyers were home with NYA Monday, go to two-time defending Class B champion Yarmouth Thursday (see theforecaster.net for game story) and play host to Wells Tuesday of next week.
In Class A North, Deering is enjoying a resurgent season and was fifth in the Heals at 3-3 entering Tuesday’s game at Westbrook. The Rams go to South Portland Thursday and visit McAuley Tuesday of next week.
Cheverus began the week 2-5 and seventh in Class A North after a 10-9 home win over Portland and losses at Massabesic (18-0) and at home to Waynflete (18-4). Emily Duff scored with a second left to beat the Bulldogs, allowing the Stags to avenge last year’s agonizing four-overtime playoff loss. Allie Scott had six goals. Cheverus was at defending Class A champion Marshwood Tuesday, hosts Thornton Academy Thursday and welcomes Scarborough Tuesday of next week.
McAuley was 1-6 and 10th after its skid hit five with losses last week to visiting Westbrook (17-10) and host Sanford (16-15). Molly Barr had four goals and Elizabeth Poulin three against the Blue Blazes. Barr scored five times and Kaeli Leddy added four against the Spartans. The Lions were at Gorham Tuesday, host Portland Thursday and play host to Deering Tuesday of next week.
Portland was 0-6 and 11th after a 10-9 loss at Cheverus, a 16-9 home loss to South Portland an 11-10 setback at Gardiner. Merritt Ryan had five goals in the last-second loss to the Stags and scored three more against the Red Riots. The Bulldogs were at Windham Tuesday, visit McAuley Thursday and visit Thornton Academy Monday.
Deering’s boys’ outdoor track team hosted Thornton Academy and Westbrook last week and placed second to the Golden Trojans. Rams’ first-place finishers included Abdi Hassan in the 800 (2 minutes, 00.6 seconds), Paolo DeMarco in the 300 hurdles (41.51 seconds), Jean Claude Butera in the high jump (5 feet-6 inches), Ezra Chapola in the long jump (20-7.25) and triple jump (40-7), and their 4×100 (45.28), 4×400 (3:35.28) and 4×800 (10:33.94) relay teams.
Cheverus joined Marshwood and Windham at Bonny Eagle and placed fourth. Alex Austin won the high jump (5-0).
Portland joined Scarborough and Massabesic at Gorham and finished fourth.
Cheverus’ girls’ team joined three other squads at Marshwood last week and the Stags came in first. Cheverus got wins from Emily Turner in the 100 (13.08) and 800 (2:29.29), Katelyn Gendron in the 200 (28.63), Emma White in the long jump (15-5.75) and triple jump (33-4), Hannah Abbott in the shot put (32-1),
Portland’s girls hosted three other teams, including first-place Scarborough. The Bulldogs finished fourth. Chessa Hoekstra was runner-up in the 100 (13.73) and the javelin (85-2). Sam Cornell finished second in the 100 hurdles (18.44). Maggie Hosmer was runner-up in the 800 (2:35.43).
Deering and McAuley joined Westbrook for a four-team meet at Thornton Academy. The Rams finished third and the Lions came in fourth. Deering’s 4×800 relay team placed first in 11:34.09. McAuley’s Emma Downey won the racewalk (10:24.55).
Waynflete joined NYA and Traip at Greely. The Flyers boys were fourth and the girls didn’t score as a team. Willson Moore was third in the 800 (2:12.69) and fourth in the mile (4:54.40).
The state singles tournament is underway. Saturday at Deering High School, the girls’ Region 5 first and qualifying rounds were held.
Waynflete’s Lexi Epstein and Chase Warner made it through. Epstein, the No. 8 seed, ousted Deering’s Liva Pierce (who had eliminated Portland’s Maggie Denekas, 8-4, in the first round) in the qualifying round, 6-0, 6-0. Warner ousted Kennebunk’s Jenna Kunn, 8-4, in the first round and upset No. 16 seed Whitney King in the qualifying round, 6-0, 6-1.
Portland’s Lauren Paradise ousted Cheverus’ Alyssa Smith, 8-4, in the first round, then was eliminated by No. 4 Lena Rich of North Yarmouth Academy, 0-6, 1-6, in the qualifying round. Deering’s Maddie Abbott, seeded 13th, beat Scarborough’s Bryce Nitchman, 8-0, in the first round, then was upset by Thornton Academy’s Grace Pickering, 4-6, 2-6, in the qualifying round. Portland’s Elizabeth Block beat Biddeford’s Nicole Bradeen, 8-1, in the first round, then lost, 0-6, 0-6, to No. 14 Sarah Rich of Windham in the qualifying round.
McAuley’s Sarah Mariski was ousted in the first round by Windham’s Sarah Webb, 7-9. Teammate Jackie Kucine lost in the first round to Bonny Eagle’s Kathryn Bearor, 0-8. McAuley’s Ally Fournier also lost in the first round, 0-8, to York’s Mia Briggs. Cheverus’ Elliana Budri lost in the first round to Yarmouth’s Danielle Laverdiere, 4-8. Teammate Kendall Jackson was eliminated, 6-8, by Cape Elizabeth’s Erin Whitcomb in the first round. Deering’s Priscilla Maccario lost, 4-8, to Gorham’s Whitney King in the first round. Waynflete’s Randall Seder lost, 2-8, to Greely’s Alex Tebbs in the first round.
The boys’ Region 5 first and qualifying rounds were held at Waynflete’s courts at Fore River Fields.
Waynflete’s Brandon Ameglio, the No. 8 seed, advanced with a 6-1, 6-1 win over South Portland’s Andrew LeBlanc. Portland’s Peter Gribizis , seeded 11th, downed Cheverus’ Malcolm Smith (who defeated Bonny Eagle’s Devin Borchard, 8-6, in the first round), 6-0, 6-0, to move on. Waynflete’s Jacob Greene, the No. 14 seed, was a 6-0, 6-3 winner over Cape Elizabeth’s James Salerno in his qualifying match. Portland’s Quinn Clarke downed Waynflete’s Peter Michalakes, 8-3, in the first round, then upset No. 16 Ian Mitchell of South Portland, 6-4, 6-1, in the qualifying round to advance.
Cheverus’ Matt McCormick beat Bonny Eagle’s Graham Munro-Ludders by an 8-0 score in the first round, then lost, 1-6, 0-6, to No. 4 Alex Klemperer of Falmouth in the qualifying round. Portland’s Peter Barry, ranked 12th, was upset by Scarborough’s John McCloskey, 3-6, 6-7 (4), in the qualifying round.
Deering’s Will Weeks lost by default to Bonny Eagle’s Max Harris in the first round. Teammate Issac Finberg, the No. 17 seed, was upset by NYA’s Hunter Mahoney, 2-8, in the first round. Cheverus’ James Nguyen was ousted by Scarborough’s Alex Giles, 4-8, in the first round.
The team regular season ends next week and several local teams continue to do well.
The eight-time defending Class C champion Waynflete boys were 6-1 and fourth in the Class C South Heal Points standings entering Monday’s makeup match at three-time defending Class B champion Cape Elizabeth. Portland’s boys suffered their first loss last Wednesday, 3-2, to Gorham, to fall to 7-1 and third in Class A South. The Bulldogs are at rival Deering Wednesday and host Thornton Academy Friday. The Rams were 6-1 and fifth at press time. Cheverus was 2-6 and ninth at the start of the week.
On the girls’ side, Cheverus was 5-2 and sixth in Class A South at press time. Portland was 5-3 and seventh and Deering (5-2 and eighth) is also on track for a postseason berth. The Bulldogs host the Rams Wednesday. McAuley was on the outside looking in at 1-6 and 13th in the standings (only 12 teams make the playoffs). In Class C South, Waynflete was 3-4 and sixth heading into Monday’s makeup match versus Cape Elizabeth. The Flyers welcome defending Class C champion NYA Monday of next week.
Portland’s John Williams steals third as Cheverus’ Chris Vallee takes the throw during the Bulldogs’ 8-1 win last week.
Portland’s Grace Stacey tags out Deering’s Kaylee Helmick during the Bulldogs’ 11-5 win last week.
Cheverus’ Jesse Pierce tries to get past a Greely defender during the Stags’ 11-9 loss Saturday.
Waynflete’s Wilson Moore competes in the mile at last week’s meet at Greely. Moore was fourth and also placed third in the 800.