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Waynflete senior Lydia Giguere goes up for a left-handed layup to clinch the Flyers’ 54-43 regular season-ending home win over North Yarmouth Academy Thursday. Giguere had 21 points, 18 rebounds and seven steals in the victory.
Joe Carpine / 365digitalphotography.com photos.
More photos below.
NYA- 6 14 11 12- 43
W- 9 14 16 15- 54
NYA- M. Larson 6-11-25, K. Larson 4-1-10, H. Hamblett 3-0-6, Griswold 1-0-2
W- Giguere 7-6-21, Olney 6-0-12, Wildes 5-1-11, Aronson 4-0-8, Burdick 1-0-2
NYA (3) M. Larson 2, K. Larson 1
W (1) Giguere 1
PORTLAND—Waynflete’s girls’ basketball team hoped to close the 2017-18 regular season on a high note Thursday afternoon and what better way to accomplish that than by downing rival North Yarmouth Academy.
The Flyers, on their Senior Day, honored Izzy Burdick, Lydia Giguere and LZ Olney, then all three girls played key roles as Waynflete stymied the Panthers once more.
A huge first quarter from Giguere (six points, six rebounds and four steals) helped the Flyers take a 9-6 lead and both teams heated up in a back-and-forth second period, which saw NYA junior Maggie Larson spark a run which gave the visitors a brief one-point lead before Waynflete took a 23-20 advantage to the break.
In the third quarter, the Flyers went on a 10-1 run to go up by double digits, but the Panthers hung around and trailed, 39-31, heading for the fourth period.
There, NYA drew as close as four, as Larson banked home a 3-pointer with 2:07 on the clock, but Giguere scored the game’s final seven points to help Waynflete close it out, 54-43.
The Flyers finished the regular season 6-12, dropped the Panthers to 10-8 and in the process, extended their 12-year win streak over their rival to 26 consecutive games.
“Our goal was to keep our energy up and keep pressure on them and get out on their shooters,” said Giguere, who led Waynflete with 21 points. “This is something to be proud of. Our goal was to keep our high standard against NYA.”
NYA and Waynflete both had moments of greatness this winter.
After going 7-12 a year ago, losing to Old Orchard Beach in the Class C South preliminary round, NYA welcomed Nick Stacey as coach and after a slow start this winter, the Panthers have impressed.
NYA opened with losses at Old Orchard Beach (65-27) and at home to Waynflete (37-24), then beat host Hyde (53-30) and Temple Academy (36-25). After a 48-33 loss at Traip Academy, the Panthers handled visiting Pine Tree Academy (45-26), host Seacoast Christian (57-33), visiting Pine Tree Academy (42-29) and visiting St. Dom’s (49-45). The Panthers lost at Sacopee Valley (34-26) and Old Orchard Beach (56-34) and at home to Traip Academy (38-23), before bouncing back to down visiting Hyde (44-12), Seacoast Christian (63-41), Buckfield (57-31) and host St. Dom’s (60-52). Tuesday, NYA lost at home to Sacopee Valley (42-38).
Waynflete has been competitive most of the season, even if it hasn’t won as frequently as the Panthers.
After opening with a 53-30 home loss to Wells, the Flyers beat host NYA (37-24) and visiting Traip Academy (43-33). A 44-31 loss at Cape Elizabeth and a 24-22 setback at Yarmouth followed. After downing visiting Hebron Academy (43-27) and Sacopee Valley (55-28), Waynflete lost at home to Old Orchard Beach (30-25) and Poland (53-32), at Traip (53-40), at home to Freeport (58-46), at home to St. Dom’s (41-38) and at defending Class B champion Gray-New Gloucester (65-22). After getting back in the win column at Sacopee Valley (47-33), the Flyers fell at Hebron Academy (42-38), Old Orchard Beach (54-26) and St. Dom’s (38-34).
In the Dec. 11 meeting, junior Emi Boedeker (since sidelined with a collarbone injury) led Waynflete with 12 points and Giguere added 10, while junior Sydney Plummer (who was sidelined with an injury Thursday) paced NYA with eight points.
That win was the Flyers’ 25th consecutive over the Panthers.
Thursday, on Waynflete’s Senior Day, NYA hoped to beat the Flyers for the first time since Jan. 17, 2006 (60-52 in Yarmouth), but Waynflete got the Panthers again.
Giguere opened the game with a long 3-pointer 25 seconds in, but after that, scoring was at a premium.
The Panthers got on the board on a jumper from junior Helen Hamblett, but Giguere added a free throw and sophomore Anna Wildes did the same to make it 5-2.
NYA sophomore Katie Larson countered with a driving bank shot, but Flyers sophomore Sophi Aronson scored on a putback and freshman Kilee Sherry set up Giguere for a layup before Maggie Larson scored her first two points, on free throws, to cut the deficit to 9-6 after one quarter.
In the first eight minutes, NYA was hindered by eight turnovers and Giguere had six points, six rebounds and four steals.
The offense picked up in the second period, as the Panthers took their first lead, but only for a moment.
A steal and layup from Maggie Larson started the frame, but Giguere countered with two free throws.
After Hamblett scored on a putback, off an inbounds set, Burdick fed Olney for a layup.
With 5:06 left in the half, Maggie Larson converted an old-fashioned three-point play (leaner, foul, free throw) to tie it, 13-13.
The next six points went to the Flyers, as after a steal, Burdick set up Wildes for a layup, Wildes went coast-to-coast for a layup and Aronson set up Olney for a layup to make it 19-13 with 3:26 remaining in the half.
NYA then rattled off seven straight, as Maggie Larson hit a 3, Larson made two free throws, then with 1:58 on the clock, Larson scored on a runner in traffic for a 20-19 lead.
That lead lasted a little over a minute, as Burdick set up Olney for a layup and as time expired, Olney drained a long jumper to give Waynflete a 23-20 halftime advantage.
Maggie Larson led all first half scorers with 14 points, while Olney had eight points for the hosts and Giguere added eight points, 10 rebounds and five steals.
In the third period, the Flyers stretched their lead again.
Maggie Larson started the second half with two free throws, but Aronson countered with a short jumper.
After a putback from Panthers junior Ellie Griswold, Wildes stole the ball under the NYA basket and made a layup, Giguere drove for a layup and Aronson’s putback made it 31-24 with 3:26 left, forcing Stacey to call timeout.
It didn’t stem the tide, as after Maggie Larson made a free throw, Giguere put home her own miss and Giguere set up Olney on the fast break to make it 35-25.
Katie Larson drained a 3 for the Panthers, but Wildes scored on a putback.
After a Maggie Larson foul shot, Wildes hit a jumper, but a Katie Larson layup just before the horn pulled NYA within eight, 39-31, heading to the fourth quarter.
There, Waynflete put the finishing touches on its victory.
Aronson opened the final stanza with a short jumper and after Maggie Larson made a layup, Giguere scored on a putback.
Maggie Larson made two free throws, then set up Hamblett for a layup to cut the deficit to six, but with 4:28 remaining, Burdick scored her lone points, on a jumper in the lane to push the lead back to eight.
After Katie Larson scored on a runner, the Flyers broke the press and Aronson fed Olney for a layup, but Katie Larson sank a free throw and with 2:07 on the clock, Maggie Larson banked in a 3-pointer to cut the deficit to a mere four points, 47-43.
After the Panthers twice had chances to make it a two-, or even a one-point game, but turned the ball over, Giguere took an inbounds pass from Burdick and made a layup while being fouled before adding the all-important free throw for the three-point play with a minute to go to make it a three-possession game.
“Honestly, that was not the play,” Giguere said. “I saw I’d be open and Izzy did a good job recognizing I was there. I was a little nervous (on the free throw), but I’ve had practice calming my emotions and pretended I was at practice.”
If that basket wasn’t the dagger, the next one was, as with 26.8 seconds remaining, Giguere broke through the defense and went in for a layup.
“My goal was to get over halfcourt, then I saw a lane straight to the basket and took advantage of it,” Giguere said.
Two free throws with 5.2 seconds on the clock made it official and Waynflete celebrated its 54-43 victory.
“It’s a little bit bittersweet, to be honest,” said Giguere, who not only had 21 points, but also grabbed 18 rebounds and finished with seven steals. “I’ve played four years. It’s been a long time, but it feels like it’s gone by so fast. I came in excited, but tried to put my emotions aside and focus on the game because it’s a really big one. This is so big going into playoffs. Having upward momentum is very important.”
Olney had 12 points, Wildes 11 (to go with 10 rebounds and four steals), Aronson eight (as well as 14 boards) and Burdick two (to go with five assists).
“It was nice to see some of the younger kids step up,” said Giguere. “They had some breakout games. Sophi got some important rebounds. She did a really good job tonight. We’ve been working on Anna’s confidence to shoot and she’s got it now.
The Flyers enjoyed a 54-32 rebounding advantage, made 7 of 11 free throws and overcame 15 turnovers.
NYA got a game-high 25 points from Maggie Larson, who had four rebounds and a pair of assists.
“I’m very lucky to have Maggie,” Stacey said. “She’s a great player.”
Katie Larson contributed 10 points, Hamblett had six (to go with 11 rebounds) and Griswold added two (to with seven boards). Senior Lincoln Hamblett didn’t score, but had eight rebounds and two steals.
The Panthers committed 21 turnovers and hit 12 of 17 foul shots.
“(Waynflete’s) a good team,” Stacey said.” My girls went down fighting tonight. They’re very coachable kids. They keep fighting every game and we try to get them to believe. I heard good things about the girls coming in and I thought we could be competitive. For the most part, we have been.”
NYA (ranked seventh in the Class C South Heal Points standings at press time), posted the program’s best record since the 2003-04 season and will likely host a prelim for the first time since that season next week at a date and time to be announced, likely against St. Dom’s. A win would send the Panthers to Augusta for the first time in 14 seasons.
“We’ll see how it all shakes out, but it would be nice to be home,” Stacey said. “It would be incredible for these girls to get to Augusta. We have three practices to try to get better and we’ll see what happens.”
Waynflete (11th in the region at press time) will travel for a preliminary round game.
If the Flyers can spring the upset, they’ll move on to the quarterfinals in Augusta for the second year in a row.
“The goal is to come out strong,” Giguere said. “It’s my dream to get back to Augusta.”
NYA junior Maggie Larson, who had a game-high 25 points, races up the floor.
Waynflete senior LZ Olney goes up for a shot in traffic.
Waynflete sophomore Anna Wildes makes a layup over NYA junior Ellie Griswold.
Waynflete senior Izzy Burdick makes a pass.
Waynflete sophomore Anna Wildes grapples with NYA junior Ellie Griswold for possession.
Waynflete 37 @ NYA 24
@ Waynflete 49 NYA 23
Waynflete 64 @ NYA 23
Waynflete 63 @ NYA 12
@ Waynflete 54 NYA 13
@ Waynflete 78 NYA 26
Waynflete 53 @ NYA 28
@ Waynflete 76 NYA 22
Waynflete 75 @ NYA 25
Waynflete 45 @ NYA 28
@ Waynflete 69 NYA 43
Waynflete 65 @ NYA 49
@ Waynflete 69 NYA 49
@ Waynflete 53 NYA 26
Waynflete 61 @ NYA 36
@ Waynflete 62 NYA 30
Waynflete 43 @ NYA 36
Waynflete 51 NYA 28
@ Waynflete 51 NYA 26
Waynflete 70 @ NYA 45
@ Waynflete 62 NYA 24
@ Waynflete 54 NYA 34
@ Waynflete 52 NYA 51
@ NYA 60 Waynflete 52
@ Waynflete 45 NYA 41
@ NYA 39 Waynflete 34
NYA 43 @ Waynflete 38
@ Waynflete 52 NYA 38
Waynflete 52 @ NYA 48
Western D quarterfinals
Waynflete 52 NYA 36
Waynflete 57 @ NYA 28
@ Waynflete 48 NYA 39
@ Waynflete 59 NYA 28
Waynflete 38 @ NYA 29