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Red Riots Take Down Blue Blazes 57-50

Sport: Basketball (boys)  Posted: January 8th, 2008 by Tom Nolette

Red Riots Take Down Blue Blazes 57-50
By The WIZ

A very interesting game at Westbrook High School tonight. Both South Portland and Westbrook came into this game with identical records each at 5-3. The game was played very deliberate by both teams no run & gun in this one. The game was close most of the way with the South Portland Red Riots pulling away late to get the big win by a final of 57-50.

In the 1st quarter the Blazes opened right up to a 5-0 lead as Dom Borelli cans a 3 followed by a Kyle Sanborn deuce and that was the biggest lead of the night for the Blazes. The Blazes Christian Hamilton kept them in the game most of the night as he hit 3 of his 5 three pointers in the first period but the Riots Will Furbush hits one of his five 3s on the night plus a deuce and Keegan Hyland has two free throws plus a deuce and this game is even after 1 period 18-18.

In the 2nd period both teams battled back and forth with several lead changes but the lead in never more than 2 points either way as Furbush and Hamilton each bury another 3 and the Riots lead it by 1pt. at the half 33-32.

In the 3rd period Will Furbush is at it again as he hits two more 3s and with 1:45 left in the 3rd Hyland hits a deuce and the Riots have their biggest lead yet 6pts. 44-38. neither team scores for the rest of the period.

In the 4th the Blazes Hamilton cans a 3 and Sanborn gets 1 free throw followed by a Josh Harriman 2 and this game is all tied up 44-44 with 5:58 to play. Hyland a 2, Furbush 2 and a Furbush 3 and the Riots are up by 7pts. 51-44 with 3:56 to go. The Blazes try in vein to comeback but the closet they get is 6pts. as the Riots holdem off and get the big win tonight by a final score of 57-50.
With the Win the Riots improve to 6-2 and the Blazes fall to 5-3.

Scoring in tonights game were:



South Portland:



WIZ Words: Hoops Gone Wild (Plus WIZ Top 10 Teams- Week # 5)

Sport: Basketball (boys)  Posted: January 6th, 2008 by Tom Nolette

WIZ Words: Hoops Gone Wild (Plus WIZ Top 10 Teams- Week # 5)
By The WIZ

Wow folks! We havent even reached the halfway point of the season yet and we have seen it all already. Weve had blowouts, weve had thrillers, weve had overtimes and double overtimes, weve had buzzer beaters, and weve had upsets! Its Hoops Gone Wild! As I see it right now the Bangor Rams and the Cheverus Stags are playing at a level above everyone else. Then there is a whole pack of 15-20 teams that can beat anyone on any given night and Im talking all classes. Some scores that I have seen across the state some teams are blowing teams out by 40-50 points. Are these teams that good or are some teams really that bad? There were some thrillers this past week. Windham beats Portland at the buzzer. Travis Guerrette throws in a half court shot as the horn sounds and Windham wins 50-47. Deering beats South Portland in a thriller 58-50 in a game that was decided in the last two minutes. Thornton beats Deering in an overtime thriller 62-61. How about those Golden Trojans! They are undefeated at 7-0 and have knocked off both Portland and Deering.

In the East Mt. Blue is red hot. They have won 5 straight and the get a huge win over Hampden 58-45. And how about the Lawrence Bulldogs they also knocked off Hampden in a thriller 32-31. Morse beats Cony 55-46 and Oxford Hills pulls a surprise and also beats Cony 53-46. Brunswick beats Mt. Ararat in a mild upset 57-47. Back to the West Yarmouth pulls off a huge win over Greely 49-46! This is only the 2nd time in history that Yarmouth has beaten Greely. Coach Adam Smith has his Clippers flying high right now. Falmouth handed Freeport their first loss of the season in a double overtime thriller 68-59. And Boothbay gets a big win over Mountain Valley 54-50

As we near the mid-point of the season we have 13 teams that remain undefeated.


Big Games this Week:

Monday 1/7:

Calais at Wash. Acad.
Lee at Bangor Christian
Ashland at Wasburn
Limestone at Easton

Tuesday 1/8:

Cheverus at Marshwood
South Portland at Westbrook
Thornton at Scarborough
Freeport at Yarmouth
Dirigo at Mountain Valley
Wiscasset at Winthrop
Brunswick at Cony
Massabesic at Hampden
Morse at Mt. Ararat
Mt. Blue at Bangor
Maranacook at Camden Hills
Old Town at Ellsworth
Houlton at Caribou
Ft. Fairfield at Cen. Aroostook

Wednesday 1/9:

NYA at Buckfield
Ft. Kent at Presque Isle

Thursday 1/10:

Deering at Bonny Eagle
Westbrook at Thornton
Windham at South Portland
Freeport at Greely
Bangor at Hampden
Edward Little at Mt. Ararat
Lewiston at Cony
Mt. Blue at Messalonskee
Skowhegan at Lawrence
Erskine at Camden Hills
Mattanawcook at Old Town
Rockland at Maranacook
Schenck at Lee
Easton at Ashland

Friday 1/11:

Yarmouth at Cape
Hyde at Calais
Traip at Waynflete
Buckfield at Forest Hills

Saturday 1/12:

Cheverus at Gorham
Kennebunk at Deering
Thornton at South Portland
Boothbay at Wiscasset
Hyde at Wash. Acad.
Cony at Edward Little
Hampden at Brewer
Lawrence at Mt. Blue
Messalonskee at Skowhegan
Mt. Ararat at Lewiston
Camden Hills at MCI
Ellsworth at Presque Isle
Ft. Kent at Schenck
Houlton at Lee

As we head into this week WIZ Top 10 Teams we have a major change. Thornton with the big win over Deering jumps from # 10 to # 3. Hampden with 3 losses this week drops out of the Top 10. Yarmouth with their big win over Greely moves into the Top 10 at # 9. Greely with the 3pt. loss to Yarmouth drops from # 9 to # 10 this week. We have teams that are knocking at the door just screaming to get into the Top 10. Dirigo undefeated and waiting patiently to get in. The Mt. Blue Cougars (6-2) with 5 straight wins would love to get in. Same with the Lawrence Bulldogs at 6-2. Traip Academy very quietly and still undefeated looks to make some noise in the coming weeks. Boothbay with a big win over Mountain Valley is right there. Plus there are many more teams that could be knocking at the door trying to break it down and get in, but can they do it? We will find out in the coming weeks. Its going to be fun to see how this whole thing plays out. Who will make the tournament? And when the tourney comes around it is going to be unbelievable this year.

WIZ Top 10 Teams- Week # 5:

1.Bangor----8-0 The Rams stick it to Messaloskee 58-26! Handled Skowtown 56-33! They stay at # 1! 5 straight weeks! Will anyone bring them down! 3 games this week! Two are huge! First up! Hosting the Red Hot Cougars of Mt. Blue! Next off to Hampden! Then host to the Warriors of Nokomis! Will the Rams stay at # 1! I think so!

2.Cheverus---7-0 Stags win big this week! Crushed Massabesic 58-32! Tamed the Tigers of Biddeford 76-43! Stags are Cruisen! Easy week coming up! Stags head to Marshwood up first! Then host Sanford! Then head to Gorham! Looks like the Stags will be 10-0!

3.Thornton---7-0 The Golden Trojans! Wow! Team is for real! Great Job Coach Davies! They beat Gorham 62-42! Then they take the Big One! It took overtime! But they did it! They beat Deering 62-61! Wowzer! They make a big statement! The Trojans jump to # 3! Big week coming! 3 games up! All will be tough! First up Rt.1 to Scarborough! Then home against the Blazes of Westbrook! Then off to South Portland for a Saturday afternoon affair! Will the Trojans stay at # 3!

4.Deering---6-1 The Rams beat South Portland in a thriller! 58-50! Then lose a heartbreaker to Thornton! In Overtime! 62-61! Rams are still tough! Drop to # 4! Three games up this week! Home against Noble! Off to Bonny Eagle! Back home against Kennebunk! Rams should improve to 9-1!

5.Camden----8-0 Jammers are flying high! They Annihilate Oak Hill 79-27! Took care of Winslow 66-50! Coach Hart is Happy Right Now! But Marananacook is coming to town! This one will be huge! A Tuesday night Class B Heavy Weight Match-up! Two undefeateds! Wow! This will be a Thriller in Manila! Someone is going down! Then host Erskine! Then off to MCI! A big week for the Windjammers!

6.Maranacook--7-0 One game this past week! The Black Bears destroyed Erskine 64-34! Martin is Hot Right Now! He better stay that way! Huge game up next! The Black Bears head to the Hills! Yes thats Camden Hills! This is exciting! Two undefeateds! Something has to give! Who will it be! Then play host to Rockland! Then head to Belfast!

7.Winthrop---7-0 The Ramblers Rambled all over Monmouth 95-54! Still undefeated! Up next! Host Wiscasset! Then host Madison! Then off to Carabec! Ramblers will move to 10-0!

8.Calais-----6-0 Played a make-up game! Wasnt much of a game! Blue Devils showed the Madawska Owls why they are # 1 in Class C East! 91-31! Wow! Thats a slaughter! Calais streak is now at 50-1! How far will it go! Two games this week! And they are Biggies! First up its off to Washington Academy! Then play host to the Hyde Phoenix!
Could the streak end this week! We shall see!

9.Yarmouth--8-0 Welcome Clippers! Congrats Coach Adams! First time ever in WIZ Top 10! The Clippers beat Greely 49-46! Only the 2nd time in history that they have beat the Rangers! Wow! And they do it without Dilworth! The Clippers are good! They are for real! They also beat St. Doms 71-57! Two big games this week! First up host the Falcons of Freeport! Then down to Cape to visit the Cape Elizabeth Capers! Will the Clippers stay undefeated! Can they stasy in the Top 10!

Greely-----7-1 Tough week for the Rangers! They lose a heartbreaker to Yarmouth 49-46! Couple of injuries too! Bounce back and beat GNG 59-46! Rangers drop to # 10! They are still tough though! Two games up this week! And one is huge! First its off to the Lakes! To take on the Lakers of Lake Region! Then a Big Thursday Night affair! The Falcons of Freeport come to town! This game is huge for both teams! Can the Rangers stay in the Top 10!

Teams Knocking on the Door:

Mt. Blue----6-2

Til Next Week: Congrats to MBR! Live broadcasting with Tom and WIZ! MBR Kicking it up another Notch!


WIZ Preseason Predictions and Player Rankings (2007-2008)

Sport: Basketball (boys)  Posted: November 28th, 2007 by Tom Nolette


WIZ Preseason Predictions and Player Rankings (2007-2008)
(Plus WIZ Top 10 Teams)
By The wIZ

Wow its that time of year again folks. This summer flew by faster than ever and hoops season is almost here. As always it time for The WIZ to make his preseason predictions and give you his preseason player rankings. This is going to be another very exciting year in all four classes. Will any of the teams repeat and take home back-to-back Gold Balls? Or could Calais get a 3-Peat? We shall find out this coming March 1st. As I have done in previous years I will give you my predictions in all four classes East and West with my picks for the top 3 teams and 3 sleeper teams that could surprise us all. Plus my prediction on who will win the State Title in each class. Then I will give you my preseason player rankings and finally my Top 10 teams heading into week # 1.

Class A East:

The defending State Champions the Bangor Rams will look to repeat. Gone are Alex Gallant and Troy Jellison but the Rams are still loaded with talent. Back are Lee The Alaskan Assassin Suvlu, Adam Bernstein, Ryan Weston, Billy Zolper and UMaine bound Jon McAllian. Still cant figure out why he didnt get much PT last year but I think this year Jon will explode for the Rams. Coach Reed is one of the best coaches out there, he has the talent, they have the tradition, can this lead them to Back-To-Back Gold Balls?

Next up I like the Hampden Broncos. The Broncos lose Evan Farley and Dan McCue but Antonio Juco is back along with Justin Brown and Brad Haase and watch out for the Super Sophs Jacob Moore and Noah Burditt these two are going to be very good.

Up next I like the Eddies of Edward Little. The Eddies will be looking for a little revenge after making a quick exit from the tournament last year. Sure they lose Troy Barnies and his brother Travis but back are veterans Kyle Philbrook, Eric Prue, Ben Harnett and Muktar Sharif. Look for Coach Adams to have this team near the top come tourney time.

Sleeper teams:

The Cony Rams lost to Messalonskee in the quarter-finals last year by 1pt. and they will look to go deeper in the tournament this year. They lose the Lui brothers Brian and Jason along with John Demerchant and Chris Thurston but they still have talent in the likes of Andrew Pullen, Cameron OBrien, Greg ONeil and Brian Carville. Plus watch out for the youngster Sophomore Jason Burns. Coach Hunt knows what he is doing, hes got some talent and the Rams will look to surprise come tourney time.

Up next I like The Eagles of Messalonskee. Sure they lose Big Guns in Matt Natole, Nicholas Ouellete and Eric Taylor but they return a Big Gun in Orlando Holmes and he will get some help from Ben Dubois, Dominic Berndt, Josh Gilbert, Zach Brann, and Chris Pelletier. The Eagles look to make another good run.

The Mount Blue Cougars lose a ton. Noah Paytas, Isasiah Brathwaite, Auther Trask, Adam Gilbert, and Mike Toothaker the whole starting five are gone but Coach Bessey rebuilds and reloads. The young Cougars might be a year or two away but they have some young talent that will be very good come tourney time. Senior Joe Gilbert will lead the way with an excellent group of juniors in Ben Russell, Jason Sawyer and Devon Zamboni. Plus the Cougars will have some talent in the Sophomore and Freshmen classes. And an added plus; word is out that Bessey has a new Assistant coach in the likes of Aaron Howard. Put all these ingredients together and the Cougars have a very bright future ahead for the next few years.

Class A West:

In the West I really like the Cheverus Stags to come out on top this year. The Stags lose three key players due to graduation. Anthony Savino, Christian Van Loenen and Eric Friend are gone plus Sophomore Walter Stover has transferred to Portland. But the legendary Coach Bobby Brown has plenty of talent coming back. What they really need this year is a true point guard and they get one! Indiana Faithfull a Sophomore moved to Maine from Australia. The kid can play. He has exceptional passing skills and he runs and plays the floor very well. He looks to have an excellent Bball IQ. He can penetrate, finish or dish off and dont leave him open behind the 3-point line. The Stags also have one of the states top Juniors in Mick DiStasio along with seasoned vets Doug Alston and Alex Fraser plus some more very good Juniors in big man Ian Barwise, Peter Foley, Dan Foster and Billy White. Look for the Stags to play a very tough defense and to run the floor this season.

Up next I like the Portland Bulldogs. Coach Russo loses Andrew Duncanson, Ryan Carmichael and Anthony Ciccarelli. But the Bulldogs have plenty coming back. You know the Dogs would love another shot at the Gold Ball after their loss to Bangor in the State Game last March and they just might very well get that shot. Back for the Bulldogs are Seniors Jake Longstaff, Justin Powell, Anthony Passmore, and Kelly Lamar. Junior Charlie Ho along with a very talented Sophomore class in Joe Zukowski, Koang Thok and Miles Carey-Snow. Plus they get a top transfer Senior Mike Harmon from Bonny Eagle, and they also get Junior Eddie Bogdanovich from South Portand, plus a senior who was injured last season big man Dewayne Alberte. Dewayne had an impressive summer. Watch out for the Bulldogs they will be tough and they very well could be back chasing the Gold.

Next up the Deering Rams. The Rams would love to get back to the State game as well and believe me they do have a shot at it. Coach Dan LeGage will be in his 6th year at the helm for the Rams along with assistant coach Jon Maloney and the Rams get a new assistant coach former Bonny Eagle/UMF star Jon Bird to help the cause. The Rams do lose big man Brandon Carbone, Adam Requia and the Feisty little point guard Pat Plourd but the Rams have the rest back! One of the states top players Kyle Donovan with vets Ronald Abwoch (watch out for him this year) Chris Smith, Tim Conley and the big guy 66 Nicholas Burkhardt along with some underclassmen Parker Dodd. Khader Abbas and Regan Flaherty; Plus Super Soph Eddie Tirabassi. The Rams will be right back in the hunt and they could steal the whole show.

Sleeper teams:

The South Portland Red Riots will be very good this year. The Riots lose their legendary coach Tony DiBiase. Its a shame Tony would have been in his 17th year with the Riots but he was handed his walking papers by the administration who felt it was time for a change. Coach Dibiases assistant for the past 12 years Phil Conley takes over as the head coach. Coach Conley is very capable and he does have some talent returning. They do lose big man Coleman Findley and his brother Matt, plus Eddie Bogdanovich transferred to Portland. The Riots return one of the states top Sophomores Keegan Hyland and he will get help from Seniors Will Furbush, Nick Wright, Nick Gaddar and Chris Biskup, plus another talented Sophomore Matt Lee. The Riots should be right in the thick of things come tourney time.

Next is the Blue Blazes from Westbrook. The Blases have had a couple of down years but they will be strong this year. Coach Karter has some talent this season and if the players buy into his system the Blazes will be contenders this year. Gone are Travis Rand, Michael Tanguay and Shane Kelly. They return Kyle Sanborn, Josh Harriman, Kyle Barrows and Steve LeBel, plus Juniors Tyler Kelly and Christian Hamilton. One of the states top Sophomores Dominic Borelli and another very talented Soph Nich Jobin.
Look for the Blazes to be tough an upset-minded come tourney time.

Up next the Golden Trojans from Thornton. The Trojans lose Tyler Kelly, Mike Burchill and Elliot Thomas. But back are Jeff Winnie and big man Kory Martin along with a top Junior James Morse and add in role players John Trull, Dakota Greene and Kyle Powers ant the Trojans under Coach Bob Davies will make a strong run this season.

Also watch out for Windham and Scarborough this year as they could surprise.

WIZ Predictions:

Class A East Champs- Bangor
Class A West Champs- Cheverus
Class A State Champions- Bangor

Class B East:

Have to stick with Camden Hills to repeat in the East. It will be tough but I think Coach Hart can do it with the team he has. The Windjammers lost in the State game to Mountain Valley last season 58-48 and you know they would love another shot at the Gold Ball this year. They do lose two starters from last year to graduation Nick Wooton and Jared Mitchell plus Paul Drapper is gone, but plenty of talent is back. This years seniors Paul Campbell, Christian Pieri Dylan Smith, Jake Grinnell and A.J. Hunt are all back along with one of the states top Juniors Gordan Fischer plus a very good cast of other Juniors plus a very good Sophomore in Jimmy Weffering. I look for the Windjammers to be right back fighting for the Gold this year.

Next the Black Bears of Maranacook. The Black Bears last years favorites by many were stunned in the quarter-finals by MCI 58-50. The great Sophomore class of two years ago are back as Seniors this year and you know they have something they want to prove. They want that Gold back that they got 2 years ago. They have one of the state top players in Ryan Martin (Hell Light-Up-The Christmas Trees long before Xmas is here)
Plus Will Bardaglio, Mike Poulin and Devin Garrity. Wow! What a line-up! They can taste it and they just might get it back.

Up next the Gardiner Tigers. The Tigers lose big man Sean McNally (UMaine) and Devon Brown to graduation. Everyone else is back and Gardiner drops from Class A to Class B this year and they will be very tough to beat in Class B. Kyle Stilphen is one of the states top athletes. The three-sport player is also one of the best in his class at basketball. He will lead the Tigers along with Mike Lavalle, Alex Nivus, Mike Denham, Ryan Guerrette, Jacob Coan, Eric Goodwin, Jake Wright and Jordan Grant. I see the Tigers right in the Mix come tourney time.

Sleeper Teams:

Mattanawcook The Lynx made it to the Eastern Finals last year losing a heartbreaker to Camden 61-60. You know they would love to go further this year. Senior Derek Dead Eye Libby had a great summer playing with the MBR team. This kid can shoot the lights out. He will get help from Junior Brady Vose along with a good cast of supporting players. Look for the Lynx to be right in the mix come tourney time.

Next up I like Erskine this year. The Eagles went 8-10 in regular season last year and lost by 2pts. in the prelims to Gardiner 40-38, but that was in Class A. Erskine also makes the drop to Class B this year and they will be tough at this level. Back this year will be Senior Jack Garrity along with his twin brother Peter. Look for both to have a big year. Then add in Junior Garret Holt and Devon Veileux and the Eagles will be right in the thick of things come time for the Tourney.

Up Next the Hawks of Hermon. The Hawks went 11-7 in regular season last year. Then they win a thriller by 2pts. 52-50 over Medomak in the Prelim game. Then they lose a heartbreaker a 3 overtime loss to Ellsworth in the quarter-finals. The Hawks will be hungry this season. The Senior Derek Helms returns along with Junior Kevin Tarr and Super Sensation the Super Soph Colton Gross. The Hawks will surprise this year and they very well could go deep into the tournament.

Class B West:

In B West I like the Capers of Cape Elizabeth. Coach Jim Ray gets the best out of his players and this year his team has plenty of talent. The Capers only lose two to graduation. Nick Goodyknoonz and Will Hall are gone. Cape went 10-8 in the regular season last year, won their quarter-final game over Poland 79-56, beat York in the quarters 61-50 before losing to Mountain Valley in the Semis 62-33. The Capers have a ton of talent coming back. They will be led by one of the states top players in Class B Senior Shaine Burks, plus Senior point guard Tommy Ray, along with big man Ian Place and plenty of more help with, Tony Welch, Steve Whitten, Woodlin Tabery and Jimmy Bump. Plus Juniors Conor Lawler, John Messina and Alex Bowe. Plus a Super Soph Andrew Dickey. Cape will be very strong with plenty of depth. I Look for Cape to take the West this Year.

Up next is the Falcons of Mountain Valley. Last years defending State Champions lose a lot to Graduation. Andy Shorey, D J Gerrish, Matt Lyons plus the Cookie Man Brendan Keckel are gone. (They will miss them cookies!). They do have some experience returning in Owen Jones, Dean McCrillis, Bryan Canwell and Keith Brennick for the Seniors. Plus Juniors Justin Staires, Matt Laubauskas, Jacob Hickey and Travis Ruff. Who knows the Falcons with their winning traditions could steal the whole show and possibly bring the Gold back to Rumford for Back-To-Back Titles.

Next up would be the Greely Rangers. The Rangers finished last season at 17-1 and headed to the tournament as the #1 seed. Beat Yarmouth in the quarter-finals 67-43. beat Falmouth in the Semis 63-40 and they lost to Mountain Valley in the Western Maine Final 39-32. Coach Ken Marks loses Big Guns Caleb Jordan, Matt McDonough and Will Grogan to graduation. They have some young talent coming back. Junior Chris Young will have a breakout year this season and he will get help from Seniors Spencer Adams and Alex Lavoie plus Juniors Erik Thayer and Ben Andreasen. Plus a very good Sophomore in Trevor Tierney. Look for the Rangers to be in the fight come tourney time.

Sleeper Teams:

The Falmouth Yachtsmen. Coach Halligan somehow gets his teams there every year. They lose 5 Seniors from last year. Brady Frost, Adam Pachard, Jesse Hugo, Sam Barns and Alex Westervelt are gone. But Coach Halligan returns some young talent. Theyll be led by Seniors Mike Doyle and Kevin Smith and will get help from Junior Jack Wyman and a Super Soph Stephano Mancini. The Yachtsmen will be right back in the tournament.

Next up the Yarmouth Clippers. The Clippers went 11-7 in regular season last year and they beat Lake Region in the prelim game 75-47 and they lost in the quarter-final to Greely 67-43. The Clippers lose little to graduation. Bryan Ertz is gone but back are Lucas Denning and Joey Dillworth. These two plus a good cast of role players the Clippers will be back in the Tourney as well.

Up next the Falcons of Freeport. These Falcons also finished at 11-7 in regular season games last year and they lost in the quarter-final game to Mountain Valley 74-46. They lose two top players Danny Mehler and Luke Charest to graduation. Senior Reid Christian is back with Tom Markelon plus a very good Junior in John Klages plus a good cast of role players and Coach Sickels should have his team back in the tournament again this year.

WIZ Predictions:

Class B East Champs- Camden
Class B West Champs- Cape Elizabeth
Class B state Champions- Camden

Class C East:

The Calais Blue Devils will look to make it 3 in a row. The two time defending State Champions do lose Brandon Tomah and Chris Taylor to graduation but look what they have returning. Senior point guard Sam Bell will lead the way but he will get plenty of help from Juniors Cal Shorey and Jordan Leeman plus Rod Tirrell and add in the younger Shorey Freshmen Cam. That line-up will be very hard to beat. The Blue Devils are undefeated the last two years. Can they do it again?

Up next the Raiders of Washington Academy. The Raiders went 12-5 in regular season last year then beat Ft. Kent in the quarters 74-65 before losing to PCHS 57-52 in the Semis. The Raiders return Senior Joey Hunter along with Eric Leighton and they have a Super Soph in Ben Teer. The other Soph Josh Johnson I understand has moved out of state. But still expect a big year for the Raiders.

Next up is the Orono Red Riots. The Riots went 11-7 in regular season last year and lost a close one to Houlton in the Semi-Finals 59-56. With Senior Seth Dwyer back along with Joel Riemersma look for the Red Riots to be right back in the thick of things come tourney time.

Sleeper teams:

The Dexter Tigers will be very hungry this year. After going 12-6 last year they beat Narraguagus in the prelim 57-37 but lost to Piscataquis in the Quarter-Finals 54-33. The Tigers return Gavin Cote and Nate Pierce and the Tigers will be in the hunt again when the tournament rolls around.

Up next are the Pandas from Lee Academy. The Pandas make the move up to Class C from Class D. In Class D last year the Pandas went 11-7 in regular season play, then they beat Shead in the Prelim 74-51, beat Limestone in the Quarter-Finals 67-49, Then lost a heartbreaker to Schenck in the Semi-Final 50-49. The Pandas will be led by Senior Devon Parker and I hear they got a real good freshmen A J Harris and who knows who else may be playing for the Pandas. Look for Lee to have another good year.

Next up the Shiretowners from Houlton. The Shiretowners went 11-7 last year in regular season play. They beat Orono in the Quarters 59-56 and lost to Calais in the Semis 54-45. The Shiretowners return 3 big Seniors Parker Brown, Ryan Hill and Josh Beals. Add in Junior James Bates and the Shiretowners will be very good again this season. They might even surprise everybody and come out on top in the East.

Class C West:

The Winthrop Ramblers will be very tough to beat this year. They went 16-2 last season. Beat St. Doms in the Quarters 65-47, and lost to Boothbay in the Semis 71-46. They do lose Mike Gingras, Kyle Plossy and Jason Ridley to graduation. But they have the States # 1 player in Sam LeClerc. You think LeClerc was good last wait till you see him this year. What a summer this kid had. Sam has plenty of help too. Junior Larry Foster is back as is Erza Damm and Tim Gingras and add in Kevin Hart, Jake Steele and Skyler Whaley. Plus they get a transfer from Mt. Blue Junior Zach Farrington who will help out. Look for the Ramblers to come out on top in the West.

Up next the Cougars of Dirigo. The Cougars are coached by one of the best coaches in the state Gavin Kane. Last year the Cougars went 17-1 in regular season play and went into the tournament the # 1 seed. They beat Livermore Falls in the Quarter-Final 77-38, took care of Traip in the Semi-Final 67-54 and lost to Boothbay in the Western Maine Final 52-45. They lose three key players to graduation. Mike Holmquist, Spencer Berry and Josh Daley are gone. But back are the States # 1 Junior 67 Thomas Knight. This guy will be a force inside this year and he can step back and nail the 3 pointer. He will get help from Seniors Colby Knapp, Adam Law and Erik Kersey, Plus they have a couple of Super Sophs in Nick Crutchfield and Tyler Chaisson. The Cougars will be well coached and will be right at the top of their game come tourney time and they very well could steal the whole show.

Next up the Boothbay Seahawks. The Seahawks lose a ton to graduation. 8 Seniors are gone including Big Guns Owen Johnson, Roy Arsenault, Matt Sceviour and Pat Norton. But they return Big Man Kris Noonan. Kris at 65 is one of the states best big men. He had an outstanding summer playing with the MBR team and he will be a force in Class C east this year. He will get help from Seniors Tim Stover and Joe Farrin plus a good Junior in Sam Cook. The Seahawks coached by the legend I.J. Pinkham will be right in the middle of things come tourney time and the will look to steal the whole show.

Sleeper Teams:

The North Yarmouth Academy Panthers will make some noise this year. The Panthers finished last season with a record 7-11 and went into the tourney as the # 11 seed. They squeaked by Georges Valley in the prelim 44-42 and they lost to Boothbay in the Quarters 58-36. They lose two starters to graduation. Banak Thiwat and Choul Ngoal are gone. But Coach Ed Rogers has some talent coming back. Senior Liam Anderson should have a breakout year and fellow Senior Pak Lul is back along with two very good Juniors in Andrew Gendron and Calvin Chicoine. I see the Panthers making a very strong run this year.

Up Next would be the Waynflete Flyers. The Flyers went 13-5 under Coach Rich Henry last season. They beat Mt. Abram in the Prelim 72-22 and lost to Traip in the Quarters 60-49. They do lose 3 starters to graduation. Kahiye Hassen, Thomas Newton and Andrew Veroneau are gone. Coming back though are Seniors Lucas ONeil and Jared Entwistle along with Junior Hassen Jeylani and a very good Sophomre Billy NGoal. Lucas ONeil is an excellent point guard look for him to lead this group to a very good season this year.

Next up the Traip Rangers. The Rangers finished last season at 12-6. They beat Hall-Dale in the Prelim 71-51, beat Waynflete in the Quarters 60-49 before losing to Dirigo in the Semis 67-54. The Rangers lose 4 starters to graduation. Isaiah Plummer, Andrew Plummers, Ryan Birse and Matt Downs are gone. Back is the lone starter Senior Trevor Higgins. Trevor had a super season last year and he will be one of the best players in C West this year. He will get help from fellow Seniors Cody Abbott and Tyler Metevier, plus two Juniors that will help in the cause Brennen Connor and Eric Modica. Look for Coach Jeremy Paul to have this group playing very well this season.

WIZ Predictions:

Class C East Champs- Calais
Class C West Champs- Winthrop
Class C State Champions- Winthrop

Class D East:

Have to go with Deer Isle to repeat in the East this year. Sure they lose Bryant Ciomei but the got his brother back Senior Colin Ciomei and Junior Eben Powers also returns. They will get help from Drew Eaton and Evan Rollings. The Mariners went a perfect 22-0 last season taking home the Gold Ball. Things wont be as easy this season but with Ciomei and Powers leading the way I think the Mariners can take the East again.

Up next is the Central Aroostook Panthers. The Panthers went 18-0 in regular season games last year. They beat Machias in the Prelim 78-42, beat Calvary in the Quarters 64-58 and lost to DIS in the Semis 76-63. The Panthers return standouts Manny Martinez and Cameron York. These two should have a huge season this year and they will get help from Sophomore Casey Brewer, plus add in Blake and Logan McCarthy and a couple of rookie Freshman Caleb Kelly and Logan McLaughlin. The Panthers will be strong again and they could very well take the whole thing.

Next up the Woodland Dragons. The Dragons went 11-7 in regular season last year and headed to the tournament as the # 9 seed. The Dragons lost a heartbreaker in overtime in the Prelim game to Washburn 59-55. Dragons Coach Troy Cilley has a ton of talent this year. Ben Sears and Chad James will lead the way for the Dragons along with help from Aaron St.Pierre, Spencer Brown and the Sophomore Corey Rolfe, plus add in the other Sophomore Keith Curtis. The Dragons will make a strong run come tourney time.

Sleeper Teams:

The Fort Fairfield Tigers will be pretty tough this season. The Tigers went 5-13 last season and just missed making the 16 Class D East Tournament getting beat out by South Aroostook. But the Tigers have a lot of experience returning this year. Look for Junior Doug Sharpe to have a big year and hell have help from fellow Juniors Austin Dufour and Matt Cresenzo, plus Seniors Ryan Noyes and Cody Closson and the Sophomore Josh Booth should have a very good year. Look for the Tigers to be in the hunt come tourney time.

Next up the Easton Bears. The Bears finished 11-7 in regular season play last year and were seeded at # 11 but lost in the Prelim to # 6 Calvary 89-64. Senior Jeremy Brock returns for the Bears along with fellow Senior Nate Sanders and they will get help from 3 Juniors Brad Trask, Sam Bacon and Sean Daniels. I think the Bears will have a good year and go a little deeper in this years tournament.

Up Next the South Aroostook Warriors. The Warriors went 4-14 in regular season last year and the squeak in the final 16 for the East tourney but the were beaten in the prelim game by # 1 seed Schenck 85-44. Colby Clark is back for his final year along with Rob Toothaker, plus Junior Tyler Robinson and they also have one of those Super Soph Dakota Sleeper. Dakota is the brother of the former Legend of the County Wille Sleeper. Plus they have a very good Freshman in Cody Robinson. Look for the Warriors to be much improved this year.

Class D West:

The Richmond Bobcats went a perfect 17-0 in regular season play last year. They entered the Tournament as the # 1 seed. The Bobcats beat Rangeley in the quarter-finals 61-44, beat a good Buckfield team in the semis 52-48 and they lost to Gould in the Western Maine Final 50-42. They lose Glendon Kendrick, Kyle Lancaster and Erik Nash from their starting line-up due to graduation but the Big Guy 611 Marc Zaharchukis back along with Brandon Lancaster and Sam Carter, plus they will get help from Walter Miller, Josh Brown, Nick Woods and Eric Murrin. I dont see anyone beating this team this season. Coach Paul Lancaster has to be excited I dont see anyone in Class D that will be able to stop Zaharchuk. Look for the Bobcats to take the Gold Ball home this year.

Next up would be the Valley Crusaders and they will be out to prove me wrong. The Crusaders finished up with an 11-6 record in regular season last year. The Crusaders beat Hyde in the quarter-final 53-50 and they lost to Gould in the Semis 52-44. They lose Stefan Staples and Lucas Hinds to graduation; But the Legendary coach Dwight Littlefield has some talent this year. Back for their Senior year are Trevor Miller, Curtis Miller, Scott Hunnewell and Brandon Osgood and they will get help from Jonathan Hunnewell, Ronald Pinkham along with two sophomore Cameron Miller and Nathan Schultz. Look for Valley to have a very good year and try to upset Richmond in the tournament.

Up next the Buckfield Bucks. The Bucks finished at 9-7 heading into last years tournament. They beat Elan in the quarter-final 62-33 and lost to Richmond in the Semis 52-48. They lose their top scorer Jamie Henderson to graduation but thats it everyone else is back. John Condon, Zach Cowett, Cy Wilkinson and Andrew Litchfield are all back for their senior season. These guys will be tough to be and they just might surprise us all.

Sleeper Teams:

The Rangeley Lakers finished 8-10 in regular season last year and they beat Portland Christian in the prelim game 74-48 before losing to Richmond in the quarter-final 61-44. The Lakers will be led by David Raymond and Ben Bliss. Look for the Rangers to be in the mix come tourney time.

Next up the Buccaneers of Elan. The Buccaneers finished their regular season at just 9-3 last year and they lost to Buckfield in the quarter-final 62-33. They only lose two players to graduation and they have a very good group of players back this year. They will be led by Junior Malcolm Turner and he will get help Sean Waddleton and Fred Hussain. Look for the Buccaneers to be very hungry come tournament time.

Up Next I like Greater Portland Christian. The Lions finished 7-8 in regular season play last year and got bumped by Rangeley in the prelim game 74-48. They have their 3 captains back for their final year. Derek Green, Matt Congdon and Mike Saunders and they have more seniors that will help the cause in Jacob Thibeault, Tyler Yarborough, Nate Harriman and Joe Tshamala. The Lions have some experience and they should be right in the hunt come tourney time.

WIZ Predictions:

Class D East Champs- Deer Isle
Class D West Champs- Richmond
Class D State Champions- Richmond

WIZ Preseason Player Rankings:

The WIZ Preseason Player Rankings are base on play from last year, play from AAU, play from summer H.S. hoops and play from fall leagues. I have a list of the Top 25 Players State Wide, A Top 100 Seniors list, A top 75 Juniors list, A top 40 Sophpmore list and a Top 25 Un-Ranked Freshmen list. We must remember this is a preseason list and many players will change in rankings as the season progresses as many players improve throughout the year and as always new stars arise. At the end of the season The WIZ puts out his End Of season Player Rankings which are a much truer ranking. Also when compelling a ranking list like this there is always the possibility that a player may be missed or there may be UNs players we do not know about. If there are players you feel are missed please let us know.

WIZ TOP 25 Players State Wide:

1.Sam LeClerc-----------Sr.-----------Winthrop
2.Jon McAllian----------Sr.-----------Bangor
3.Thomas Knight---------Jr.-----------Dirigo
4.Derek Libbey----------Sr.-----------Mattanawcook
5.Ryan Martin-----------Sr.-----------Maranacook
6.Lee Suvlu-------------Sr.-----------Bangor
7.Sean Bergeron---------Sr.-----------Kennebunk
8.Ryan Weston-----------Sr.-----------Bangor
9.Kyle Donovan----------Sr.-----------Deering
10.Mick DiStasio--------Jr.-----------Cheverus
11.Keegan Hyland--------So.-----------South Portland
12.Mike Harmon----------Sr.-----------Portland
13.Orlando Holmes-------Sr.-----------Messalonskee
14.Kyle Philbrook-------Sr.-----------Edward Little
15.Mike Foustoukos------Sr.-----------Gorham
16.Andrew Pullen--------Sr.-----------Cony
17.Kris Noonan----------Sr.-----------Boothbay
18.Shaine Burks---------Sr.-----------Cape Elizabeth
19.Justin Powell--------Sr.-----------Portland
20.Dominic Borrelli-----So.-----------Westbrook
21.Marc Zaharchuk-------Sr.-----------Richmond
22.Ethan Cushman--------Sr.-----------John Bapst
23.Gordan Fischer-------Jr.-----------Camden Hills
24.James Morse----------Jr.-----------Thornton
25.Jacob Moore----------So.-----------Hampden

WIZ Top 100 Seniors (Class of 2008)

1.Sam LeClerc----------Winthrop
2.Jon McAllian---------Bangor
3.Derek Libbey---------Mattanawcook
4.Ryan Martin----------Maranacook
5.Lee Suvlu------------Bangor
6.Sean Bergeron--------Kennebunk
7.Ryan Weston----------Bangor
8.Kyle Donovan---------Deering
9.Mike Harmon----------Portland
10.Orlando Holmes------Messalonskee
11.Kyle Philbrook------Edward Little
12.Mike Foustoukos-----Gorham
13.Andrew Pullen-------Cony
14.Kris Noonan---------Boothbay
15.Shaine Burks--------Cape Elizabeth
16.Justin Powell-------Portland
17.Marc Zaharchuk------Richmond
18.Ethan Cushman-------John Bapst
19.Kyle Stilphen-------Gardiner
20.Mike Poulin---------Maranacook
21.Antonio Juco--------Hampden
22.Eric Prue-----------Edward Little
23.Jake Longstaff------Portland
24.Paul Campbell-------Camden Hills
25.Doug Alston---------Cheverus
26.Sam Bell------------Calais
27.Adam Bernstein------Bangor
28.Jeff Winnie---------Thornton
29.Colin Ciomei--------Deer Isle
30.Will Bardaglio------Maranacook
31.Eric Thistle--------Skowhegan
32.Adam Kingsbury------Presque Isle
33.Shawn Dottsie-------Mt.Ararat
34.Brad Haase----------Hampden
35.Bill Zolpher--------Bangor
36.Kyle Corrigan-------Caribou
37.Christian Pieri-----Camden Hills
38.DeWayne Alberte-----Portland
39.Ryan Hill-----------Houlton
40.Tom Ray-------------Cape Elizabeth
41.Nate Peirce---------Dexter
42.Athony Passmore-----Portland
43.Joey Hunter---------Washington Acad.
44.Colby Knapp---------Dirigo
45.Mike Lavalle--------Gardiner
46.Ben Rosser----------Caribou
47.Cameron OBrien-----Cony
48.Chris Hughes--------Scarborough
49.Liam Anderson-------NYA
50.Mike Lowell---------Schenck
51.Will Furbush--------South Portland
52.Lucas ONeil--------Wayneflete
53.Justin Brown--------Hampden
54.Joe Gilbert---------Mt.Blue
55.Travis Gurrette-----Windham
56.Jack Garrity--------Erskine
57.Lucas Denning-------Yarmouth
58.Tim Gingras---------Winthrop
59.Reid Christian------Freeport
60.Gavin Cote----------Dexter
61.Cameron York--------Central Aroostook
62.Andy Pogar----------Scarborough
63.Trevor Higgins------Traip
64.Casy McKauge--------Bonny Eagle
65.Billy Colasante-----St.Doms
66.Kory Martin---------Thornton
67.Josh Dibatisha------Mt.Ararat
68.Kevin Smith---------Falmouth
69.Mamadou Ba----------Old Town
70.Dan Scully----------Brunswick
71.Dylan Smith---------Camden Hills
72.Ben Harnett---------Edward Little
73.Devon Costigan------Lawrence
74.Alex Fraiser--------Cheverus
75.Nick Wright---------South Portland
76.Chris Smith---------Deering
77.Nate Burke----------Hampden
78.Erza Damm-----------Winthrop
79.Owen Jones----------Mountain Valley
80.Brandon Moffett-----Oxford Hills
81.Cy Wilkinson--------Buckfield
82.Rod Tirrell---------Calais
83.Tim Stover----------Boothbay
84.Mike Doyle----------Falmouth
85.Zach Keene----------Livermore Falls
86.Muktar Sharif-------Edward Little
87.Larry Foster---------Winthrop
88.Derek Keller---------Mt.View
89.Curtis Miller--------Valley
90.Joe Dilworth---------Yarmouth
91.Colby Clark----------South Aroostook
92.Ian Place------------Cape Elizabeth
93.Peter Garrity--------Erskine
94.Jeremy Brock---------Easton
95.Dean McGrillis-------Mountain Valley
96.Derek Helms----------Hermon
97.Ben Doucette---------Van Buren
98.Trevor Miller--------Valley
99.Zach Cowatt----------Buckfield
100.Jordan Stinglen-----Seacoast Christian

WIZ Top 75 Juniors (Class of 2009)

1.Thomas Knight---------Dirigo
2.Mick DiStasio---------Cheverus
3.Gordan Fischer--------Camden Hills
4.James Morse-----------Thornton
5.Ronald Abwoch---------Deering
6.Jarrid Palmer---------Lewiston
7.Ben Russell-----------Mt.Blue
8.Cal Shorey------------Calais
9.Peter Foley-----------Cheverus
10.Chris Young----------Greely
11.Tyler Cummings-------Hall-Dale
12.Eddie Bagdonovich----Portland
13.Jason Dennison-------Wiscasset
14.Chad James-----------Woodland
15.Jordan Leeman--------Calais
16.Jamie Sawyer---------Mt.Blue
17.Ian Barwise----------Cheverus
18.Nick Baudansa--------Rockland
19.Corey Therriault-----Edward Little
20.Colby Hutchins-------Brewer
21.Russ Mortland--------Presque Isle
22.John Klages----------Freeport
23.Phil Leighton--------Lake Region
24.Dan Foster-----------Cheverus
25.Christian Hamilton---Westbrook
26.Justin Staires-------Mountain Valley
27.Eric Goodwin---------Gardiner
28.Garrett Holt---------Erskine
29.Dan Sheehan----------York
30.Parker Dodd----------Deering
31.James Bates----------Houlton
32.Jack Wyman-----------Falmouth
33.Brett Bradford-------Bangor Christian
34.Lincoln Dresser------Rockland
35.Alex Kee-------------Morse
36.Greg ONeil----------Cony
37.Kevin Hart-----------Winthrop
38.Nate Dixon-----------Windham
39.Kevin Tarr-----------Hermon
40.Alex Bowe------------Cape Elizabeth
41.Nate Doehler---------Bonny Eagle
42.Brad Trask-----------Easton
43.Andrew Gendron-------NYA
44.Devon Garrity--------Maranacook
45.Malcome Turner-------Elan
46.Ebon Powers----------Deer Isle
47.Matt Perkins---------Lawrence
48.Dylan Dedmon---------Bucksport
49.Manny Marttinez------Central Aroostook
50.Tim Fraser-----------Brunswick
51.Brian Carville-------Cony
52.Regan Flaherty-------Deering
53.Connor Lawler--------Cape Elizabeth
54.Ben Sears------------Woodland
55.Doug Sharpe----------Ft.Fairfield
56.Brady Vose-----------Mattanawcook
57.Alex Nivus-----------Gardiner
58.Tyler Patterson------Rockland
59.David Ketchan--------Winthrop
60.Matt Laubouskas------Mountain Valley
61.Doug Nash------------Leavitt
62.Alex Goldrup---------Medomak
63.Ben Andreason--------Greely
64.Khader Abbas---------Deering
65.Isaac Brower---------Hyde
66.Nate Frazier---------Bangor
67.Ian Philbrook--------Scarborough
68.Teel Iverson---------Rockland
69.Danny Hart-----------Camden Hills
70.Ryan MacQueston------Windham
71.Cameron Newman-------Biddeford
72.Eric Thayer--------- Greely
73.Charlie Ho-----------Portland
74.Evan McCarthy--------Katahdin
75.Eddie Manning--------Scarborough

WIZ Top 40 Sophomores (Class of 2010)

1.Keegan Hyland---------South Portland
2.Dominic Borrelli------Westbrook
3.Jacob Moore-----------Hampden
4.Kong Thok-------------Portland
5.Indiana Faithfull-----Cheverus
6.Eddie Tirabassi-------Deering
7.Stephano Mancini------Falmouth
8.Colton Gross----------Hermon
9.Walter Stover---------Portland
10.Lenny Cummings-------Cheverus
11.Nich Jobin-----------Westbrook
12.Noah Burdit----------Hampden
13.Evan Kenny-----------GNG
14.Ben Teer-------------Washington Acad.
15.Paul Verville--------Skowhegan
16.Andrew Dickey--------Cape Elizabeth
17.Jason Burns----------Cony
18.Trevor Tierney-------Greely
19.Joe Zukowski---------Portland
20.Nate Hennigan--------Bangor
21.Dylan Kingsbury------Presque Isle
22.Nate Carson----------Brewer
23.Dakota Sleeper-------South Aroostook
24.Jordan Taylor--------Skowhegan
25.Luke Bartlett--------Old Town
26.Jordan Hoyt----------Mt.Blue
27.Rachon Edgerton------Brunswick
28.Tyler Pelletier------Mt.Ararat
29.Ray Leach------------Hall-Dale
30.Tyler Chaisson-------Dirigo
31.Josh Sangillo--------Windham
32.Jimmy Weffering------Camden Hills
33.Cal Winchester-------Bangor
34.Jim Philbrook--------Edward Little
35.Miles Carey-Snow-----Portland
36.Tim Levesque---------Oak Hill
37.Austin Clark---------Jay
38.Matt Lee-------------South Portland
39.Tyler Bessette-------Brewer
40.Ryan Petros----------Ellsworth

WIZ Top 25 Upcoming Freshmen (Class of 2011)
(Un-Ranked and in no particular order)

Dennis Ross----------Deering
Nate Thistle---------Skowhegan
James Ek-------------Portland
Joe Doane------------Cape Elizabeth
Josh Walker----------Mt. Ararat
Graham Safford-------Camden
Brad Reed------------Belfast
Cam Shorey-----------Calais
Zach Gardiner--------Westbrook
Joe Savino-----------Cheverus
Zach Blodget---------Bangor
Ryan Ecker-----------Rockland
Clint Orcutt---------Mt.Blue
Tyler McFarland------Camden
Zach Bean------------Scarborough
Andrew Shaw----------Thornton
Mekae Hyde-----------Lewiston
Jamie Ross-----------Deering
Cameron Brown--------Cape Elizabeth
Keegan Pieri---------Camden
Josiah Hartley-------Bangor
Ray Bessette---------Brewer
John Hardy-----------Deering
Joseph Veroneau------Waynflete
Cameron Kaubris------Mountain Valley

WIZ Preseason Top 10 Teams heading into Week # 1

1.Bangor-----Last year Class A State Champions! The Rams want to Repeat Baby! McAllian! The Alaskan Assassin Suvlu! Weston! Bernstein! Zolpher! Who will stop these guys! Can they Go-All-The-Way!

2.Cheverus----The Stags are lookn Good! Gotta have the Faith! They got Indiana Faithfull! Mick Distasio! Peter Foley! Ian Barwise! Doug Alston! Danny Foster! And they got Coach! Bobby Brown!

3.Portland-----Who Let The Dogs Out! Last years WM Champions! 3 Transfers come in To help The Dogs! Harmon! Stover! Bagdonovich! Combine with Powell! Longstaff! Passomre! Alberte! Thok! And Manny More! Russo has to be

4.Hampden-----The Broncos are Loaded! Juco! Brown! Haase! TwoSuper Sophs! Moore! Burditt! # 2 in the East! Theyll Look to Upset # 1!

5.Deering-----The Rams want to Steal The Whole Show! They just Might! Donovan! Abwoch! Smith! Conley! Dodd! Plus Many More! The Rams are Gonna Be Hungry!

6.Camden Hills-They can taste it! Theyve been there before! One thing Stands in their Way! Maranacook! This will Be An-All-Out-War! Who will Get It! Campbell! Pieri! And! Fischer! Think Windjammers!

7.Edward Little-The Eddies Have something to say! Quick Exit Last Year! They Want More! They may Get It! Philbrook! Prue! Harnett! Shirif! How far will They Go!

8.Maranacook---Forget Last Year! The Black Bears are on a Mission! They want Gold! Period! Nothing else Matters! Martin! Bardaglio! Poulin! And Garrity! They had Gold before! They want it Back!

9.Winthrop-----Whats all the Rambling! The Ramblers will be Hot! They can Smell It! They can Taste It! Will they Get It! LeClerc! Foster! Damm! Gingras! Hart! I think They Will!

10.Calais------Blue Devils Look for a 3-Peat! Would be Sweet! Havent Lost in 2 Years! Wow! Will The Streak End! The Gold Rush is on Baby! Who will get It! Bell! Shorey! Leeman! Tirrell! How Sweet It Is!

Teams Knocking On The Door:

Cape Elizabeth
South Portland
Mountain Valley
Deer Isle

Til Next week: The itch has started again! Good luck to all teams!


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

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.

Click to read the full story


Abby Mace a freshman sensation

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

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.

Click to read full story

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.”

Click here to read full story


'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.)

Click to read the full story

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
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

Read Full story: Click here





Bapst edges Eagles

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

Read Full story: Click here




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


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.).

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.
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