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MBR takes 11th place at AAU national championship....

Sport: Basketball (boys)  Posted: August 1st, 2007 by Tom Nolette

MBR takes 11th place at AAU national championship....

L-R Billy Colasante, Mike Foustokos, Lee Suvlu, Derek Libbey, Sam Leclerc, Kyle Philbrook, Thomas Knight, Kris Noonan, Evan Kenney, Eric Prue, Brandon Tomah..missing from photo: Ben Hartnett, Casey Reynolds

Orlando, Fl. ( compiled by www.NewEnglandRecruitingReport.com
from WIZ reports with additional comments by MBR)

Head Coach Carl Parker’s squad secures the best ever finish for a Maine boys basketball team at the national championships. 153 teams from across the nation had their eyes on competing for a national championship. The MBR boys basketball team advanced to the sweet 16 bracket at the junior boys/17u AAU National Championship before losing to a Virginia based team.
MBR then played in the 4th round losers bracket advancing to the 6th place game before falling to Georgia’s Inner Strength 55-51 to capture the 11th place medals.

MBR also played in the Super Showcase event just prior to the start of the national championships. Both events were held at Disney’s Wide World of Sports. MBR finished 4-1 in the super showcase and 7-2 in the nationals to earn a total record of 11-3 over the eight-day period.
While their impressive streak was deemed a complete team effort it is hard not to take notice of some exceptional performances.

Sam Leclerc of Winthrop HS came into Orlando as the most recognizable name on the MBR roster and the talented floor general did nothing to disprove his impressive reputation. He did an excellent job of running the team throughout the week and is given much of the credit for the precision that characterized his team’s offense. If that wasn’t enough he also stepped up in the big games including a 20 point effort in an 81-65 victory over the Georgia Ballers during the medal round at the super showcase, another 20 point effort that fueled his team to a victory over Mark Trail (and consequent advancement into the medal round) during the nationals, and a high of 27 points in the victory that sent MBR to the sweet 16 as they defeated the Jackson Panthers from Mississippi.

Derek Libbey of Mattanawcook HS exploded onto the recruiting scene as he led the MBR team in scoring throughout the week. He was especially impressive during the nationals as he scored in double figures in all but 1 game, scored 18 or more points in 7 of MBR’s 9 games, and matched LeClerc for a team high 27 points in MBR’s victory over the Baltimore Stars that pushed them into the 6th place game. Libbey was able to do the majority of his damage with his three-point shot as he bombed away on all 8 days of the trip. He also is very crafty getting to the basket and often is at his best when someone is defending him closely.

Another player who made a big impression on college coaches was the skilled 6’8 forward Thomas Knight of Dirigo HS. By the end of the week he had collected quite an impressive set of admirers as coaches were obviously intrigued by a 6’8 lefty with outstanding footwork and a soft jumper. He went for 15+ points on five different occasions including his team’s overtime victory against the New York Gauchos when he was matched up against one of the brightest young frontcourt prospects in all of New England, Tevin Baskin. Thomas is a quick jumper, excellent shot blocker and defensive rebounder

“The Alaskan Assassin” is the nickname Lee Suvlu of Bangor HS earned after his outstanding week of play from MBR.org writer THE WIZ. Suvlu was on fire as soon as he got off the plane as he led his MBR team in scoring during 2 of their 5 games at the super showcase. Like Knight, he also saved his best performance for the Gauchos during the nationals, as he scored 10 of his 17 points that game during the third quarter which pushed MBR’s lead to 18 points.

Kudos also need to go out to: Brandon Tomah of Calais showed why his ability to run a team and knock down shots from the perimeter will be such a valuable addition to Lee Academy next season, also a lock down defender; Kris Noonan of Boothbay who was able to score and rebound around the bucket despite being undersized in quite a few games; Kyle Philbrook who stood out with his performance against the Shining Stars of Ohio is a tremendous defender with excellent court presence; Michael Foustoukos of Gorham HS, a long athletic 6’5” player , hit double figures against Mark Trail is; as well as Eric Prue, Evan Kenney, William Colasante, Casey Reynolds, and Ben Hartnett who provided invaluable depth to Coach Parker’s bench throughout the week.

Overall the entire MBR team can be proud, as they were clearly the Cinderella story of the entire championships and ultimately made history by advancing farther than any team from the state of Maine had ever gone before.

A special Thanks to the WIZ for all his timely recaps from Nationals. Be sure to keep up on his WIZdom on MBR.ORG. Video from AAU national trip: MBR videotaped all the MBR games and as many of the Maine hoops 17u games as possible. We can make DVD’s for you. Give us a call to discuss.

Waterville's Fossa returns from injury, scores crucial points

Sport:   Posted: July 8th, 2007 by Tom Nolette

BY BILL STEWART
Staff Writer Kennebec Journal & Morning Sentinel

Danielle Fossa, for one day anyway, decided to throw through the pain.

So what if the Waterville Senior High School senior couldn't lift her right shoulder to her head just a week prior to the Class B state championship meet?

"It hurt, but I wanted to contribute to the team's effort," she said. "Especially, because they were looking at a close meet with York. We knew it would be close and I wanted to give them all the points I could."

Fossa gave the team 26 points that ultimately decided the Class B state championship.

With a shoulder injury so severe she couldn't lift a brush to her hair a week before the state meet, Fossa won the discus and shot put to help the Purple Panthers win their third consecutive state title. She also finished third in the javelin, an event she almost threw left-handed because her shoulder was in so much pain.

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Abby Mace a freshman sensation

Sport:   Posted: July 8th, 2007 by Tom Nolette

BY BILL STEWART
Staff Writer Kennebec Journal & Morning Sentinel

Abby Mace had a decision to make prior to the outdoor track and field season.

The 800-meter run or the 3,200? The Maranacook Community High School freshman considers the 1,600 her prime event.

"In middle school we didn't have the (3,200) so I did the 800," she said. "I wasn't sure which one to do this season. I finally decided that I would be better in the 3,200."

Good call.

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Foes united: High school hoops rivals join forces on AAU squad

Sport: Basketball (boys)  Posted: July 8th, 2007 by Tom Nolette

By Tom Minervino
Sports Writer
    
LEWISTON (July 7, 2009): This winter, the goals of Keegan Hyland and Dominic Borelli will not be compatible. Each will be looking to lead his team to a Western Maine Class A boys basketball title and a shot at the Gold Ball, Hyland playing for South Portland High and Borelli for Westbrook.

For now, however, the two are united in their ambition. As teammates on the MBR 17-and-under AAU basketball team, the players have their sights set high for the upcoming AAU Junior National Championships. The 2009 MBR 17s are looking to do even better than the 2007 team that finished 11th out of 153 teams, the best finish for a Maine boys squad at the national tournament.

“I think we can pretty much beat anybody,” said Hyland, a 6-foot-4 guard who will start his senior year at South Portland in the fall, before a recent practice at Bates College in Lewiston.

“We are down a little bit on size compared to the big programs, but I think if we shoot the ball well and compete the whole game — if we don’t let up the whole game — I think we can play with anybody in the country.”

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'Driven' Hyland working to take his game to the next level

Sport: Basketball (boys)  Posted: July 8th, 2007 by Tom Nolette

By Tom Minervino
Sports Writer
    
LEWISTON (July 7, 2009): It’s not too often that a coach has to tell a player that he’s working too hard. Then again, it’s not too often that a player like Keegan Hyland comes along.

The 6-foot-4 sharpshooter is entering his senior season at South Portland High. He’s led the SMAA in scoring the past two seasons and is the No. 2 ranked college prospect in the state (and the only one in the top five that is not on Lee Academy’s prep team), according to New England Recruiting Report.

He has a number of scholarship offers from Division I college programs on the table, and is drawing interest from some of the top programs in the country. With a good performance on his MBR 17-and-under team at the AAU Junior National Championships later this month, Hyland will undoubtedly receive more offers.

To get to this point has taken plenty of work.

“He’s a driven young man,” MBR coach Carl Parker said before a recent practice at Bates College in Lewiston. “His workouts are legendary. As a matter of fact, oftentimes when we talk, we’ll talk about maybe taking a day off. A day off to him might be taking 500 shots — 500 makes, that is.”

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The Rivals

Sport: Football  Posted: July 8th, 2007 by Tom Nolette

A sneak peak at the film on the football rivalry between Cape Elizabeth and Mountain Valley
By Tom Minervino
Sports Writer
    
WESTBROOK (July 7, 2009): There’s Rumford, the struggling town on the Androscoggin River where job opportunities are scarce. The paper mill — the town’s lifeblood — faces an uncertain future. The high school, Mountain Valley, has a proud football tradition that has united and excited the community for decades.

Then there’s Cape Elizabeth, an affluent coastal community where professionals settle to provide their children with the best opportunities. Expectations are high on the playing field and in the classroom. High school football is new to the town, which has a proud soccer tradition.

Kirk Wolfinger’s “The Rivals” is a film that chronicles the development of a football rivalry between the Mountain Valley Falcons and the Cape Elizabeth Capers during the 2007 high school season. It is set to premiere as the opening-night film at the Maine International Film Festival at the Waterville Opera House on Friday at 7 p.m. (For tickets, visit www.miff.org.)

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Xaverian 7, St. John's Prep 4: Xaverian rallies, outguns St. John's

Sport:   Posted: March 7th, 2007 by Tom Nolette

Xaverian 7, St. John's Prep 4: Xaverian rallies, outguns St. John's
By Jack McCluskey
Globe Correspondent / March 7, 2008

LOWELL - St. John's Prep scored two goals in two games against Xaverian in the regular season. Needing a win in the second round-robin game to keep their Super 8 chances alive, the Eagles took just three shots - and 17 seconds - to net that many in the first period last night at Tsongas Arena.
 
Unfortunately for the Eagles (12-7-3), the Hawks (13-6-3) answered the Prep's quick burst with some second-period fireworks, scoring four goals - including the first two in just 20 seconds - to take the lead for good and remain undefeated against their Catholic League rival, 7-4.

"We knew they were going to come out with their hair on fire," Xaverian coach Dave Spinale said, citing adjustments made in the locker room during the first intermission.

Spinale's pep talk and strategy session after Chris O'Hare and Colin Prior put the Prep on top lit a fire under Xaverian. The Hawks (2-0 in the Super 8) then turned up the pressure and St. John's (0-2) had a hard time clearing the zone the rest of the night.

Nathan Hardiman got the first for the Hawks, skating down the right side, dipping briefly below the backline, and making a quick move to the middle, where his backhander beat Kyle Pettoruto to the stick side. Twenty seconds later, Bill Scannell picked off a Prep pass in the Eagles' zone and pounced, putting it past Pettoruto with a flick of the wrists.

Four minutes later, the Hawks went on top for good when Pettoruto ventured too far out of the crease defending a pass and Jack Walsh managed to push it just past the left post as he went sprawling to the ice.

Xaverian never let up, adding a fourth second-period tally with less than a minute left when Chris Wagner got free near the left circle, deked toward the middle, and slid the puck past a diving Pettoruto.

"I think we got a few bounces tonight, but I think we earned our bounces," Spinale said. "We really attacked the puck and got to the net."

In the third, the Hawks piled it on the beleaguered Eagles goalie, peppering Pettoruto and producing two more goals, one on the power play.

With two minutes left, St. John's Prep mounted a furious rally, scoring twice in 25 seconds, but it wasn't enough as Xaverian added an empty-net tally with less than six seconds to go

Maine Hoops advances in YBOA tourney

Sport: Basketball (Girls)  Posted: April 5th, 2004 by Tom Nolette

Maine Hoops advances in YBOA tourney
sports@TimesRecord.Com
04/04/2008
FAIRFIELD — The Maine Hoops 16-and-under girls basketball team recently captured the state championship by winning the Youth Basketball of America State Tournament at Lawrence High School.

The tournament win qualifies the team to play in the YBOA National Championship later this year.

Area athletes on the team are Beth Suggs and Tarra Burr of Bath, Allyson Skillings from Woolwich, Hannah Fenwick of Topsham, Maggie Sabine from Litchfield and Amy Skillings of Dresden, the lattter of whom did not play due to an injury.

Other members of the are Augusta's Mackenzie and Courtney Dufour, Jen Nale (Waterville), Kaitlyn Deering (Sydney), Julie Smith (Brooks) and Stephanie Comstock (Bangor). The team is coached by Warren Skillings.

Maine Hoops 71, Maine Miracles 38
A shift to a four-guard set along with a full-court pressure defense allowed Maine Hoops to force several turnovers to begin the second half and break open a tight game in the championship game.

Maine Hoops outscored the Miracles 25-2 to start the second half with Sabine, Suggs and Fenwick accounting for 45 points.

Smith, Burr, Mackenzie Dufour, Courtney Dufour, Skillings and Comstock led a pressure defense that forced 32 turnovers.

Maine Hoops 54, C. Aroostook All Stars 41
Maine Hoops opened with a win behind 13 points from Sabine.

Burr and Suggs combined for 21 points and 19 rebounds, Skillings dished out six assists and had a strong floor game, and Fenwick, Mackenzie Dufour and Courtney Dufour stood out defensively.

Maine Hoops 57, Precision All Stars 35
A 15-0 run to open the second half allowed Maine Hoops to pull away for the win over a team from Falmouth.

Nale led all scorers with 20 points, while Comstock, Deering, Suggs and Courtney Dufour each scored seven.

Suggs, Fenwick and Sabine combined to pull down 31 rebounds as Maine Hoops controlled the paint. Guards Skillings and Mackenzie Dufour passed the ball well with 11 assists between them.

Maine Hoops 81, Sanford 37
Maine Hoops used a full-court trapping defense to jump out to a 21-0 lead en route to the win.

Sabine led five players into double figures for Maine Hoops with 18 points. Fenwick, Suggs and Burr chipped in 12 points apiece, while Comstock led the way on the defensive end with 14 rebounds.

The win sent Maine Hoops into the semifinals.

Maine Hoops 59, North Stars 50

In a rematch of the 2007 YBOA title game, Maine Hoops erased a 33-25 deficit to move onto the championship game.

Mackenzie Dufour, Smith and Fenwick led the charge to open the second half with a 15-5 run to take a 40-38 lead.

Sabine (18 points), Suggs (12) and Fenwick (12), along with both Dufours, Smith and Skillings, helped Maine Hoops pull away down the stretch.

Mansfield duo are Maine men

Sport: Baseball  Posted: June 16th, 0208 by Tom Nolette

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Bapst edges Eagles

Sport: Softball  Posted: May 30th, 0208 by Tom Nolette

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JUNIOR HOCKEY: Matured Dunne leads Leafs into nationals

Sport:   Posted: March 25th, 0208 by Tom Nolette

JUNIOR HOCKEY: Matured Dunne leads Leafs into nationals
March 25, 2008 6:00 AM

At Wareham High School, Gerard Dunne did a lot of wowing but not a lot of winning. That second part has changed dramatically after the 2005-06 Standard-Times Super Team goaltender has spent the past two winters sharpening his skills in junior hockey.

When Dunne gets the state at 8:20 a.m. today for the Mass. Maple Leafs against the Brooklyn, N.Y., based Metro Fighting Moose in the round-robin C Division opener of the Tier III Junior National Tournament, it'll be an older and wiser puck stopper between the pipes at the New England Sports Center in Marlboro.

"I definitely have matured, reading the play, not always relying on using your reactions, just being smarter out there really," said Dunne, 19, who last year played in the Empire League with Bay State Breakers Junior B team based out of Rockland. Last fall he hooked up with the Maple Leafs and has been part of a successful goaltending tandem, splitting duty with Paul Karus of Wisconsin. Dunne has gone 41-10 with a 3.39 goals-against average and an .880 save percentage.

"Tryouts were just a formality," said Maple Leafs coach Tony DeSilva, who tried to get Dunne on his team in 2006. "From June, it's night and day. His biggest problem was consistency."

"When I saw him two years ago, he was just raw. Now he's added some polish to his game," said goaltending instructor Cap Raeder, a former NHL coach and current pro scout and goalie coach with the San Jose Sharks. "He's great to work with because he's a sponge. He wants to get better."

Dunne played a major role as the Maple Leafs won the Continental Hockey Association championship earlier this month in Pittsburgh. It was the program's fifth title in the past 10 years. He'd like to use this season as a springboard into competition for a spot with a college team in the fall, likely at the Division-III level, though he could return to juniors.

His newfound even-keel approach is something he learned from Raeder and has cultivated while helping the Leafs achieve a 39-1 record in C-level play.

"Every game, we kind of know what to expect from him. He doesn't necessarily have one style," said DeSilva, comparing Dunne to Boston Bruins goaltender Tim Thomas. "That's kind of how Dunnie is. He may not make that standard kick-out save, but he stops the puck. He's had a couple of clunkers, but when you play as many games as we do, you're going to have some clunkers."

After completing round-robin play in the nationals, the Leafs will have played 84 games in 2007-08. To accomplish that with a team built on players who, for the most part, are not available full time, DeSilva has had to rely on contributions from talented part-timers like New Bedford High graduate Andrew Pontes.

Pontes, a Winchendon Academy post-graduate student with eyes on a playing career at UMass Dartmouth, led the Maple Leafs in league-tournament playoff scoring with seven points. He is allowed to participate in the tournaments while on school break.

Nick Smola (21 goals, 31 assists for 52 points in 67 GP) has been DeSilva's most versatile player, and the Dartmouth native produced a goal and an assist in the Leafs' playoff win against Pittsburgh.

"He's kind of like the utility fielder, he can pretty much play forward, pretty much play 'D.' He's kind of like sixth man in basketball," said DeSilva.

While the Leafs' premiere team has enjoyed success for the third straight season, the program's development team, geared for area high school players, called off its season after a poor start. The loss of coach Brian Travers to Bridgewater State has DeSilva searching for a new coach who can immediately take over with the split-season Select squad and, perhaps, eventually replace DeSilva behind the premiere team's bench.

"I'd really like to get that second program back up and running after having to fold it last year for lack of players," said DeSilva. "After going to the nationals, I'm hoping it will inspire some (high school) kids to play."

Dunne may be the Leafs' most inspired player right now, as he's found himself a place to thrive and learn while on the job.

"He's not always the prettiest goalie, but he's very aggressive and competitive. This kid really works hard," said Raeder. "He's still got a ways to go, but he's shown a lot of improvement."

Contact Mick Colageo at

mcolageo@s-t.com

Tier III junior nationals

When: Today-Saturday

Where: New England Sports Center, Marlboro

What: A, B and C-level tournaments over five days on five rinks. Action begins early morning and lasts throughout the day, beginning with three days of round-robin play and continuing with semifinals Saturday and finals Sunday.

Leafs' schedule: 8:20 a.m. today vs. Metro (N.Y.) Fighting Moose; 8:40 a.m. Wednesday vs. Charleston (S.C.) Wolverines; 9:40 a.m. Thursday vs. East Coast Eagles (Raleigh, N.C.).
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Reading writes history; Wins first state title to end public drought

Sport:   Posted: March 17th, 0208 by Tom Nolette

Reading writes history; Wins first state title to end public drought
By Steve Kendall  
Monday, March 17, 2008  
 
The Rockets’ Quinlan Junta...
Photo by Matthew Healey
The Rockets’ Quinlan Junta celebrates the first-ever public school Super Eight title.


For the first time in 30 years, a public school is home to the best high school hockey team in the state.

With its 3-0 win over Malden Catholic last night, Reading also did what no other public school has ever done - win the Super Eight tournament. The Rockets are the first public to win the elite tournament in its 18-year history, and the first public to win at the highest level in the state since Hudson captured the 1978 Division 1 state championship.

Reading finishes its amazing season with a 25-1 record, while the Lancers end their best season in recent memory with a 15-6-4 mark.

“This is huge, no doubt about it,” Reading coach Peter Doherty said. “The Catholics had won all 17 years, so to be able to finally bring home a championship for the public schools is unbelievable.”

As it has for the past few years, Reading’s potent first line led the way. Rob Toczylowski scored a pair of goals while Pat Kiley adding a single tally. Along with linemate Michael Lozzi, the trio played (unofficially) approximately 27 of the game’s 45 minutes - including about 10 minutes in the decisive second period. Junior goalie Jeff Wyer was outstanding, turning aside 22 shots for the shutout.

“We didn’t play very well in the first period,” Toczylowski said. “But once we got that first goal, things started going our way. The second goal was a huge lift, and once we got up three goals, we knew we were in great shape.”

The historical significance of the win was not lost on the Wyer, who was outstanding in this year’s tournament after struggling last year as a sophomore as the Rockets went 0-3.

“It was certainly mentioned to us a few times,” Wyer said. “But to actually have done it is unreal. We were proud to be a public school in the final, and now we go down in history as the first public school to win the Super Eight.”

Wyer played a huge role in the win. Often overshadowed during the regular season by Reading’s outstanding offense, Wyer was on top of his game last night. As his team was being outplayed in the opening period, Wyer made three great saves to keep the game scoreless.

“Everyone was talking about (Reading’s) offense, but I was more concerned about the fact they weren’t giving up many goals,” Malden Catholic coach Chris Serino said. “They probably gave up the fewest goals all season, and certainly in the tournament. Their goalie played a great game for them (last night).”

Malden Catholic controlled much of the first period, holding a 9-3 advantage in shots, and had several good scoring opportunities. However, Reading’s Kiley scored the only goal of the period with 3:19 to play, beating Evan Yanovitch along the right wing boards before firing a wrist shot that John Carbonneau got a piece of, but couldn’t stop from crossing the line.

Toczylowski scored a strange goal to open the second, as his dump-in bounced past Carbonneau’s blocker for a 2-0 lead just 12 seconds into the period.

“It wasn’t a very good period overall, but we got a lucky bounce and got the lead,” Doherty said. “The second goal was huge, though it wasn’t pretty, and once we got the third goal, we just concentrated on playing defense.”

The third goal, Toczylowski’s second, came at 6:33 of the second, and was much more aesthetic than his first. Toczylowski took a perfect feed from Lozzi in stride at the MC blue line, skated in about 15 feet along the left wing and fired a wrist shot that beat Carbonneau to make it 3-0.

Laferriere, Foster lead sweep

Sport: Basketball (Girls)  Posted: March 17th, 0208 by Tom Nolette

Laferriere, Foster lead sweep
By Jessica Bloch
Monday, March 17, 2008 - Bangor Daily News

031708_AllStars2.JPG
 Bangor's Amy Hackett, L, tries to get position on Marshwood's Sam Goda, right, in the first half of the girl's A/B All Star game at Husson on Saturday. (Bangor Daily News/Michael York) Buy this photo031708_AllStars3.JPG
 Lawrence's Alexa Bernatchez, left, tries to get a hand in front of South Portland's Jessica Aceto during the first half of their game at Husson in Bangor on Saturday.

BANGOR, Maine - Hillary Laferriere and Rachel Foster have more in common than might appear.

Although the two girls basketball all-stars attend high schools that are about 120 miles apart, they’re both senior post players. Laferriere is going to attend the University of New England in Biddeford next fall. That’s one of the options Foster is considering for her basketball future.

And both led their East teams to wins in the Maine McDonald’s Senior All-Star basketball games Saturday morning.

The 6-foot-1 Foster had the only double-double of the two games with 24 points and 13 rebounds in a 70-62 East win over the West in the C-D game, while 5-11 Laferriere scored 18 points to go with eight rebounds as the East beat the West 62-53 in the A-B matchup.

Both East squads had to rally in the first half, but held on for wins.

In the A-B game, the East not only needed to rally in the first half, it also had to stop the West from coming back in the second half.

The key was getting to the free-throw line, especially in the first half. The East hit 12 of its 15 free-throw attempts in the first half and went 27-for-38 overall.

Laferriere was particularly critical late in the game as Lake Region of Naples’ Renee Nicholas made two free throws to cut the East’s lead to two points after taking as much as a 16-point advantage earlier in the second half.

"They were running against us and they had a fast team, but I thought we kept up with it pretty well," Laferriere said.

Nicholas scored 11 of her West-best 17 points after halftime and went 7-for-8 from the free-throw line, all in the second half. Two foul shots with 4:23 left made it 54-52.

Morse of Bath’s Jill Henrikson, a Miss Maine Basketball finalist, stretched things out a bit when she made two free throws. Laferriere, meanwhile, scored the final six points of the game. She went 5-for-9 from the field and 8-for-12 from the foul line.

The West had a 14-4 lead in the first half and later went up 18-10 when the East woke up. Lawrence of Fairfield’s Brogan Liberty drained two free throws and Cony of Augusta’s Rachael Mack, who was crowned Miss Basketball on Friday night, put back a rebound to spark a 12-0 run. The East outscored the West 10-3 in the final 3:34 of the half.

Laferriere may have been the standout Saturday, but she was eager to see players like Mack and Liberty in action.

"I’d always wanted to play with the girls from Lawrence and Cony," she said. "They’re Class A, and you always hear so much about them. I always wanted to have a chance to play with them, and I finally got one."

In the C-D game,Foster’s presence made it tough both offensively and defensively for the West.

Foster has seen plenty of double teams in her day, but the West generally stuck to straight man-to-man defense.

"That’s my strong point, when people play man against me," she said. "It’s fun to have just one person on me, because I can show people what I can do."

The West didn’t get much of a break when Foster was out — Central Aroostook of Mars Hill’s 6-foot Sarah Long played well, finishing with eight points and six rebounds.

"That was the mismatch inside," said Miss Maine Basketball finalist Aarika Ritchie of Lee. "It was a pretty big factor, I think."

Ritchie had a quiet statistical game with just five points, but both of her baskets were big. The West had a 27-23 lead with about 2:30 left in the first half when Ritchie sparked a 9-0 East run as she hit a driving shot. After a free throw by Piscataquis of Guilford’s Jillian Martell, Ritchie drained a 3-pointer off a Long steal to put the East up for good.

"I think we picked it up on defense, kind of forced some turnovers and got into the passing lanes," Ritchie said. "When we got running I think we tired them out at the end of the half."

Ritchie fed Long inside with 10 seconds left for a 32-27 East lead.

The West got 11 points from 5-11 Bailey Davis of Telstar in Bethel and 10 apiece from Madison’s 5-11 Margo Russell and 5-9 Hall-Dale of Farmingdale center Britta Olsen.

Davis and Russell each hit two 3-pointers as the West went 9-for-22 from behind the arc.

Marissa Albert of Fort Kent, who missed part of the regular season with a knee injury, finished with 10 points.

Martell added nine points and five rebounds. Ashland’s Whitney Flint scored all eight of her points in the second half.

"It was fun," Foster said. "It was good to play against the higher level of competition and I like playing the higher level of competition."

jbloch@bangordailynews.net

990-8193

 

Bernier continues to mature

Sport: Hockey (Boys)  Posted: March 8th, 0208 by Tom Nolette

Bernier continues to mature

By Kevin Mills , Staff Writer
Saturday, March 8, 2008

LEWISTON - A year ago, Jonathan Bernier not only was trying to shake the rust from his game, but also get rid of the injury that plagued him much of the second half of the year.

Bernier missed much of the final months of the regular season with an ankle injury. He didn't return to the Lewiston Maineiacs' lineup until the final regular season games. By that point, he had to get his game up to snuff in a hurry.

"Last year, I came back at the end of the regular season because of my injury," said the goalie. "I was struggling at the beginning of the playoffs. Now, I'm just trying to be ready for the first game of the playoffs."

Bernier is well above where he was at the end of last season entering the playoffs. Despite losing 2-1 to the St. John's Fog Devils Friday night, Bernier continued his stellar play. He kept the Maineiacs in the game the last two periods and gave life to their comeback hopes.

"It's a team effort, but in the playoffs, everybody's got to upgrade their game," said Bernier. "If everybody does that, I think we have a good shot this year too. I had so much fun last year, I just want to do the same thing as we did last year."

Entering Friday's game, Bernier had been outstanding in his previous five outings. He had gone 4-1 and posted a 1.58 goals against and equally impressive .946 save percentage. His lone loss was a 2-1 decision in New Brunswick.

"I've just tried to be more focused," said Bernier. "Playoffs are coming soon. I've got to bring my game up. The games are so important that I want to try and give us the best shot to win those."

His recent string of games came on the heels of giving up seven goals in a loss at home. It had the Maineiac faithful booing Bernier and chanting for backup Peter Delmas.

"If you look back on my junior career, you always have a bad game in the year like that," said Bernier. "This one was at home. Last year, it was at Moncton. We're human sometimes. It doesn't bounce your way. My job is to stop the puck, and I'm just trying to be more focused."

Bernier made 23 saves in the loss to the Fog Devils Friday. Despite his fine play over the final two periods, St. John's netminder Timo Pielmeier overshadowed Bernier's performance. Pielmeier had 37 saves, 17 in the final period.

"He made some good saves, and he kept his team in the game," said Bernier. "My job is to try to keep my team in the game."

Bernier managed to keep the listless Maineiacs in contention despite giving up two goals in the first period. Both Fog Devil tallies came off turnovers in the defensive zone. After Lewiston lost the puck behind the net, Taylor MacDougall fed the puck out front to a wide open Wes Welcher. Bernier had little time to react or make the stop.

In the final minute of the period, another Lewiston mistake set up an open blast by T. J. Brennan that snuck by Bernier.

"We've just got to come out strong at first," said Bernier. "We were sloppy in the first period. We have to play right off the bat."

Bernier did get some help from his defense and the post in the second. Defender Michael Ward cleared a shot that got past Bernier and was headed into an open net early in the second. Then a Phil Mangan shot had an open right corner but hit the post.

Bernier did make crucial saves in the second to keep the Maineiacs within reach entering the third. He stopped Luke Adam in front for the second time in the period. Then while St. John's was on the power play late in the period, Bernier slid across the crease to make a sprawling save on Jean-Simon Allard.

In the third, Allard found himself on the doorstep all alone with the chance to seal it, but Bernier was there to make the stop and keep Lewiston's comeback hopes alive.

"I think I've been okay," said Bernier. "I'm just trying to be consistent."

KENNEBEC JOURNAL GIRLS BASKETBALL COACH OF THE YEAR

Sport: Basketball (Girls)  Posted: March 26th, 0201 by Tom Nolette

Hall-Dale's Terrill adapts to new role quickly
By Gary Hawkins

Brandon Terrill never figured to be a basketball coach, let alone a girls basketball coach.

He played baseball and football at Orono High School, making the Lobster Bowl as a center and tackle his senior year. He was an assistant football coach for four years and thought the game was part of his DNA.

"I always thought I'd be a football coach," he said.

But when the Hall-Dale High School girls varsity job opened up last fall, Terrill said 'what the heck' and applied. It turned out quite well. The Bulldogs finished 14-4 during the regular season and reached the semifinals of the Western Maine Class C tournament where they lost to Waynflete in overtime

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