Stretch run begins as January ends

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(Ed. Note: For the complete Falmouth-Yarmouth, Greely-Lake Region and Yarmouth-Freeport girls’ basketball game stories, with box scores and photos, see theforecaster.net)

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.

Boys’ basketball

Falmouth’s boys’ basketball team was 11-3 and second to defending state champion Portland in the Western Class A Heal Points standings after Friday’s 63-43 home win over Kennebunk. Colin Coyne had 24 points, while Jack Simonds added 22. The Yachtsmen were home against Gray-New Gloucester Wednesday, go to Freeport Thursday, host Cape Elizabeth Tuesday and close the regular season Feb. 5 at Kennebunk.

In Western B, Yarmouth was clinging to the top spot in the Heals after downing host Wells (80-48) and visiting Freeport (66-32) last week. Against the Warriors, Adam LaBrie had 23 points and he got plenty of help, as Connor O’Donnell had 13 points, Cody Cook 12 and Bailey Darling 10. In the win over the Falcons, Cook and LaBrie both had 10 points. The Clippers looked to extend their win streak to four when they went to York Wednesday. After hosting Lake Region Friday and Gray-New Gloucester Tuesday, Yarmouth closes at Freeport Feb. 5.

Greely fell to 7-6 and seventh after Friday’s 56-36 loss at Lake Region. Matt McDevitt had 17 points. The Rangers hosted Fryeburg Academy Wednesday, visit York Friday, play host to Cape Elizabeth Saturday and Wells Tuesday, then close at Cape Elizabeth Feb. 5.

Freeport was 0-14 and 15th after Friday’s 66-32 loss at Yarmouth and Monday’s 67-52 home loss to Gray-New Gloucester. Jack Davenport had 13 points against the Clippers. The Falcons went to Lake Region Wednesday, host Falmouth Thursday, visit Kennebunk Tuesday and close at home versus Yarmouth Feb. 5.

In Western D, North Yarmouth Academy was 7-7 and seventh after a 42-33 win at Pine Tree Academy and a 64-41 home loss to Old Orchard Beach. Jake Malcom had 16 points and Eoin Anderson 11 in the victory. Anderson had 16 points and Malcom 11 in the loss. After hosting Hyde Wednesday, the Panthers visit Traip Academy Friday, play at Richmond Tuesday and close at home versus Seacoast Christian Feb. 5

Girls’ basketball

On the girls’ side, Greely continues to impress. Friday, the Rangers enjoyed an impressive 52-30 home win over defending Class B champion Lake Region. Greely managed all of two points in the first quarter, but a stellar defensive effort allowed it to hang tough.The Rangers got things going in the second period, as a layup from standout Ashley Storey and a  putback from Haley Felkel sparked a 12-0 run that put them ahead to stay. Clinging to a five-point lead in the third quarter, a Felkel third-effort putback with her off-hand helped open things up even further, as Greely went on a 9-2 run. By the end of the third, the Rangers led, 35-20, and the Lakers never managed to make a run in the final stanza as Greely had no trouble pulling away to win. Storey had a double-double (19 points, 10 rebounds).

“Our shots weren’t falling and we were rushing our offense at first,” Storey said. “Coach told us to slow down and get a shot. When we play as a team and work it around, we get our shots. Our defense started clicking and we shut them down and our offense came along.”

“We were a little sluggish at the start,” Felkel said. “We lacked energy. We missed shots and that didn’t help. After the first quarter, we stepped it up and did a lot better.”

“This is the happiest I’ve been in a long time,” added Greely coach Joel Rogers. “It was one of our better performances against a well-coached team. I think (Lake Region coach) Paul True is a standard-bearer in the conference as a coach. They don’t have all the talent they had last year, but they still have talent. We only had two points in the first quarter, but we had 50 in the next three. We ran some of the best offensive sets we’ve had, especially in the second half. Our ballhandling was much better tonight.”

The Rangers game at Cape Elizabeth Saturday was postponed to this coming Saturday (at Greely). The Rangers (11-2 and fifth in Western B) were at Fryeburg Academy Wednesday, host York Friday and play at Wells Tuesday. Greely closes the regular season at Cape Elizabeth Feb. 5.

“This is the fun part of the schedule,” Rogers said. “Cape always plays us tough. If we want to get the seed we want, we have to beat York. We have to show up and play. It’s about focus, effort and execution. I don’t worry about talent or our schemes.”

Yarmouth was chasing a playoff spot at press time. Last week, the Clippers beat visiting Wells (33-26) and Freeport (47-24). Against the Warriors, Sara D’Appolonia continued her strong freshman campaign with 15 points. In the win over the Falcons, D’Appolonia and Cory Langenbach sparked a 14-2 run to open the contest, but the Clippers went cold and behind their zone defense and the play of freshman Taylor Rinaldi, the Falcons crept back within eight, 18-10, at halftime. Freeport was still very much in the contest midway through the third quarter, trailing just 23-18, when D’Appolonia took over, scoring eight points in just over three minutes to help Yarmouth go on an 11-0 run to open it up. D’Appolonia and Langenbach both finished with 13 points and Alison Clark added 12.

“The girls are young, but they give every effort,” said Clippers second-year coach Christina Strong. “They come out hard, they listen, they want to play hard. They’re not afraid. Our confidence is growing. I love seeing the potential play out. We’re progressing like we should. It’s so much fun sometimes that I find myself just enjoying the show. It’s so fun to see the girls smile and get excited about what they’re doing.”

Monday, Yarmouth lost at Falmouth, 43-33, to fall to 6-8 (12th in the Western B Heals, only 10 teams make the playoffs). The Clippers fell behind by 21 points and pulled within eight, but couldn’t get any closer. Johanna Hattan’s 10 points led Yarmouth. The Clippers hosted York Wednesday, go to Lake Region Saturday, host Gray-New Gloucester Tuesday, then close at Freeport Feb. 5.

“This is when the rubber hits the road,” Strong said. “I think anything’s possible. Making the playoffs would be so great and so unexpected. The girls want it.”

Freeport fell to 1-13 and 15th with the 47-24 loss at Yarmouth and a 69-42 setback at Gray-New Gloucester Monday. Rinaldi had 11 points against the Clippers.

“Yarmouth played very hard and did a great job with their pressure,” said Falcons first-year coach Mike Hart. “They forced us into lots of turnovers and did a nice job capitalizing in transition.”

Kayla Belanger finished with 11 points, while Regan Lynch added 10 in the loss to the Patriots. Freeport was home against Lake Region Wednesday, goes to Falmouth Friday, hosts Kennebunk Tuesday and closes at home versus Yarmouth Feb. 5.

In Western A, Falmouth won at Kennebunk, 49-28, Friday, then handled visiting Yarmouth Monday, 43-33, to improve to 9-5 (and sixth in the Heals). Against the Clippers, Ally Hickey had a tremendous all-around game, scoring 16 points and grabbing 10 rebounds.

“We went in with the mindset that we were older and more experienced,” Hickey said. “That’s what we told the underclassmen too.”

“You can’t underestimate any team that’s down, because they’ll do what they have to do,” Falmouth coach Mari Warner said. “They went for 50-50 balls and came up with them and they were scoring that way. We had a couple kids with three or fouls and we got tentative.”

The Yachtsmen played at Gray-New Gloucester Wednesday, host Freeport Friday, visit Cape Elizabeth Tuesday and close at home versus Kennebunk Feb. 5.

In Western D, NYA was 3-11 and 14th after a 49-20 setback at Pine Tree Academy, a 60-8 loss at Old Orchard Beach and a 44-12 triumph at Kents Hill. Suzanna Butterfield had seven points against Pine Tree. The Panthers were at Hyde Wednesday, host Traip Friday, welcome Kents Hill Tuesday and play host to Seacoast Christian in the finale Feb. 5.

Hockey

Falmouth’s boys’ hockey team, the two-time defending Class A state champion, continued its recent struggles with a 5-2 home loss to Lewiston. The Yachtsmen (9-4 and first in the Western A Heals) were at St. Dom’s Wednesday.

In Western B, Yarmouth was 3-7 and sixth (the top seven teams make the playoffs) entering the week. The Clippers were supposed to host Kennebunk Saturday, but that game was postponed. Yarmouth hosts Gorham Saturday and goes to Maranacook Tuesday.

Greely fell to 2-9 and ninth in Western B after Monday’s 1-0 loss at Thornton Academy. The Rangers host Kennebunk Saturday.

Girls’ hockey

On the girls’ side, Greely is peaking just in time for the playoffs as the Rangers go for their third state title in four seasons. The 13-2-1 Rangers were scheduled to host Brunswick Saturday, but that game was postponed. Greely (third in the East Region) had a showdown at top-ranked Lewiston Wednesday.

Yarmouth/Freeport/Gray-New Gloucester was fourth in the East at 8-7-1 after a 3-0 win at St. Dom’s and a 5-3 home loss to Lewiston. Katie Clemmer scored twice and Emily Johnson had the other goal against the Blue Devils. Yarmouth/Freeport/GNG was at Winslow and closes Saturday at home versus Mt. Ararat. 

In the West, Falmouth began the week 11-4 and second to defending state champion Scarborough. The Yachtsmen were supposed to go to Cheverus Saturday, but that game was postponed to Thursday. Monday, Falmouth prevailed at Biddeford, 9-1, behind three goals from Camden Carrier and two from Evie Clement. After hosting Scarborough in a pivotal showdown Wednesday and playing the makeup game at the Stags, the Yachtsmen close at home versus York Saturday.

The playoffs begin Wednesday of next week with the quarterfinals. The semifinals are Feb. 6-7. Both rounds will be played on the home ice of the higher seeds.

Indoor track

The indoor track regular season held its penultimate meets last weekend in Gorham.

Greely’s boys and girls both won their meet. NYA’s girls placed fourth, while the boys were sixth and Yarmouth’s boys placed fifth and its girls finished sixth.

In the boys’ meet, the Rangers got wins from Matt Donahoe in the junior high jump (5 feet), Duncan Lary in the junior shot put (32-2), Ryan Morrison in the open mile (4 minutes, 36.99 seconds) and Malik Black in the open triple jump (39-4). NYA’s Matt Malcom was first in the open two-mile (10:22.37) and the Panthers won the open 4×800 relay (9:05.70). Yarmouth got a win from Tucker Whitney in the junior 200 (25.58 seconds).

In the girls’ meet, Greely first-place finishers included Danielle Holt in the junior 55 hurdles (10.75), Chloe Waldrep in the junior high jump (4-8), Elizabeth Brown in the junior shot put (26-9.5), Jocelyn Mitiguy in the senior 55 hurdles (9.3), Alyssa Coyne in the senior shot put (37-8.5) and the open pole vault (8-6), Izzy Evans in the open mile (5:32.55) and Maegan Dougherty in the open long jump (14-5.75) and open triple jump (31-10.75). NYA got a win from Hannah Austin in the open two-mile (11:51.35). Yarmouth’s Emma Egan won the senior 200 (27.61) and the senior high jump (5-0).

Falmouth’s boys and girls were both second to York. Freeport’s boys and girls both came in sixth.

In the boys meet, the Yachtsmen got wins from Ben Rudnick in the junior 55 (7.16) and the junior 400 (56.71), Matt Polewaczyk in the junior 200 (24.98), Nate Klebe in the junior 55 hurdles (9.64), Cole Anderson in the junior shot put (36-11), Tony St. Angelo in the senior high jump (5-8), the open long jump (18-10), Matt Edmonds in the senior shot put (44-6), Josh Simensky in the open 800 (2:04.94), Bryce Murdick in the open mile (4:44.01), Aaron Thomas in the open pole vault (12-0) and their junior 4×200 (1:42.70), senior 4×200 (1:37.30) and open 4×800 (9:40.34) relay teams. Freeport’s Chandler Vincent was runner-up in the open mile (4:44.38). 

On the girls’ side, Falmouth got wins from Elizabeth Cyr in the junior 55 (8.16) and the junior 200 (28.88), Hannah Berzinis in the open two-mile (12:44.66) and its junior 4×200 (1:56.28), senior 4×200 (1:58.24) relays. Freeport’s Maddie Squibb won the senior 400 (1:04.53).

The regular season culminates Friday. In the early meet, Falmouth, Freeport, Greely and Yarmouth take part, along with Gray-New Gloucester, Sacopee Valley and York.

NYA competes later, against Cape Elizabeth, Fryeburg Academy, Lake Region, Poland, St. Dom’s, Traip and Wells.

Swimming

Greely’s girls’ swim team downed South Portland Friday, 101-80. The boys lost to the Red Riots, 96-63. The Rangers are home against Scarborough Friday. The girls then have a meet against McAuley Monday.

Falmouth’s boys beat Westbrook, 108-58, while the girls lost to the Blue Blazes, 95-67. After hosting South Portland Saturday, the Yachtsmen close at Scarborough Tuesday.

Yarmouth’s boys edged Bonny Eagle, 85-79, while the girls tied the Scots, 82-82. The Clippers are at Waynflete Friday and close versus Thornton Academy Tuesday.

Skiing

Monday, Yarmouth’s Alpine ski teams both beat three other squads in a slalom meet at Shawnee Peak. The boys were led by Jake Inger, who won the individual crown with a two-run combined time of 1 minute, 39.99 seconds. George Jutras (1:40.55) was second. The girls also had the top two finishers: Hannah VanAlstine (1:40.91) and Greta Elder (1:43.16).

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

Sidebar Elements


Freeport sophomore Regan Lynch and Yarmouth junior Aizhan Gwynne battle for possession during the Clippers’ 47-24 win Friday.

Greely’s Moira Train goes up for a layup during the Rangers’ 52-30 win over defending Class B state champion Lake Region Friday.

Falmouth’s Aaron Thomas soars to a victory in the pole vault at last weekend’s league meet. The Yachtsmen were second as a team behind York.

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