By Michael Hoffer
Just as the winter sports season was kicking into gear, it’s taking a brief hiatus for holiday tournaments. Of course, Mother Nature has made life difficult in the early going, but even with a small sampling, it’s clear that there are many more thrills on the horizon.
Here’s a look at where things stand as the old year prepares to give way to the new.
The much-anticipated Cheverus at Portland boys’ basketball showdown was postponed twice this weekend. The teams were originally scheduled to meet Friday night, but snow pushed it to Saturday afternoon. The contest was then bumped to a yet-to-be-determined date after the tragic death of a Cheverus student.
The defending Class A state champion Stags improved to 4-0 last Tuesday after their first test of the year, a 48-38 triumph at Windham. In that one, senior standout Mick DiStasio had 18 points. Senior Dan Foster and junior Indiana Faithfull both added eight.
Cheverus was home against Massabesic Tuesday (too late for this edition). After taking part in the holiday tournament at the Portland Expo, the Stags return to league action Jan. 2 at Biddeford.
Portland continued to surge last week. The Bulldogs, who lost to visiting Thornton Academy to start the year, crushed host Kennebunk 89-39 last Tuesday for their third win a row. In that one, senior Ed Bogdanovich (who will attend Bates College next year) had 23 points and sophomore James Ek added 21.
Portland hosted Windham Tuesday (too late for this edition) and after playing in its holiday tournament, returns to action Jan. 2 at Massabesic.
Deering suffered its first loss of the season, 71-69 at home to Westbrook, Friday night at home. The Rams, who had won their first four outings, including a 52-50 triumph at Scarborough three days prior, got 24 points from senior Khadar Abbas, but couldn’t quite complete a rally against the Blue Blazes. Senior Ronald Abwoch added 15 points in the loss.
Deering hoped to go to 5-1 Tuesday (too late for this edition) when it played at unbeaten South Portland. After taking part in the holiday tournament, the Rams return to league action Jan. 2 when they host powerhouse Thornton Academy.
In Western C, Waynflete has lost three straight after winning its opener. Thursday, at North Yarmouth Academy, the Flyers were doomed by a poor first half in a 40-35 loss. Junior John Malia led the team with 15 points in a losing effort. Saturday, host Waynflete ran into the undefeated Falmouth buzzsaw, led by junior sharpshooter Stefano Mancini, who went off for 24 first half points as the Yachtsmen cruised to a 64-29 win. Junior Cecil Gardner had 10 points for the Flyers.
Waynflete is idle until Tuesday when it hosts Fryeburg.
While the Waynflete girls’ basketball team stayed perfect Saturday with a confidence-building win at Falmouth (please see story, page ?), defending Class A champion Deering also continues to shine.
The Rams, who won their first three contests, expected to get their biggest test to date at Scarborough Friday, but that game was postponed by bad weather (no makeup date had been announced at press time). Deering hosted Biddeford in another key showdown Tuesday (too late for this edition). The Rams play host to Westbrook next Tuesday as well.
McAuley is a quiet 2-0. The Lions got their second win last Wednesday with a 53-38 victory at Portland. Sophomore Rebecca Knight led the way with a 21-point performance. McAuley hoped to go 3-0 Monday (too late for this edition) when it hosted Massabesic in a game originally scheduled for Friday. The Lions also visited Noble Tuesday (played after we went to press). McAuley is then idle until Jan. 2 when it hosts Marshwood.
The loss to the Lions left Portland 1-3, but the Bulldogs won 51-29 at Kennebunk Saturday to get back on track. Portland went to Westbrook Monday (too late for this edition). The Bulldogs return to action Tuesday when they play host to Cheverus.
Speaking of the Stags, they improved to 2-1 last Tuesday with a 53-28 home romp over Kennebunk. Freshman Alexandra Palazzi-Leahy led the way with 12 points. Cheverus was scheduled to host South Portland Tuesday (too late for this edition). The Stags welcome Thornton Academy Saturday and play at Portland Tuesday of next week.
On the ice, Cheverus fell to 1-2 Thursday with a 4-1 loss at Cape Elizabeth. The Stags’ game at Gorham Saturday was postponed to a yet-to-be-determined date. Cheverus takes part in the Maine High School Hockey Invitational, then returns to league action Wednesday, New Year’s Eve, at Portland.
The Bulldogs lost 6-2 to visiting Biddeford Thursday to drop to 1-3 on the year. Senior Sam Guimond had both Portland goals. The Bulldogs had another big test Monday (too late for this edition) when they went to Thornton Academy. After playing in the holiday tournament, Portland returns to action against Cheverus.
Deering fell to 0-5 last week with losses to host Bonny Eagle (8-1) and visiting Noble (4-1). The Rams’ quest for their first victory will have to wait until the new year, Jan. 3, when they go to Gray-New Gloucester.
In girls’ action, Cheverus improved to 6-0 last Tuesday with a 5-1 home victory over Portland. After hosting winless Deering Tuesday (too late for this edition), the Stags return to action Jan. 3 at Scarborough.
The Bulldogs fell to 1-4 after losing to the Stags. They visit Scarborough Saturday.
While the Expo season doesn’t begin until the first weekend in January, Cheverus and McAuley’s indoor track teams took part in the Bowdoin Relays Saturday.
The Stags boys scored two points and came in 13th, scoring in the shot put. Brunswick came in first.
In the girls’ meet, also won by the Dragons, McAuley had four points and placed 13th, scoring in the shot put and high jump.
While most swim meets were postponed last weekend, Portland was able to compete at Bonny Eagle. The Bulldogs boys enjoyed a victory, 101-43. The girls fell 74-39.
Deering’s wrestling team went 1-2 in recent action. The Rams won 54-24 at Sanford and lost 69-9 to Noble and 65-18 to Massabesic. Deering hosts Noble and Westbrook Saturday.
Sports Editor Michael Hoffer can be reached at email@example.com