Friday, October 28, 2016

Athlete of the week - Ben MacDonald

The Aroma Joes Athlete of the week is 17-year-old, senior Ben MacDonald, who is on the Windham High School football team. He also plays baseball. Ben’s hobbies are snowmobiling and weightlifting. 

“I think playing sports teaches kids to be mentally tough and to not get down on themselves,” he said. “I have learned to never give up and to try my hardest all the time.”

The person who has been most influential in his sports career is his father. “For always bringing me to where I needed to go, no matter what he was doing,” Ben said. 

He would like to go to college to become an electrical lineman. 

Ben is the son of Kevin and Caj MacDonald, has a sister Lindsey and a dog, Cooper.

Windham Eagles girls varsity soccer advances - By Stephen Signor

On Tuesday the 6th seeded Windham Eagles varsity girls soccer team (10-2-3) faced off against the 11th seed Thornton Academy Trojans (8-7) in a preliminary game. A dominating performance of good defense and aggressive offense led to a convincing 4-1 victory. 

The Eagles faced the Trojans earlier this year on their home turf and walked away with a 2-0 victory.
That doesn’t always guarantee a win.  It is also about remaining healthy and focused. “We’ve been prepared and working hard,” explained head coach Deb Lebel. “Unfortunately we lost Sarah Barrett on defense to a torn ACL against Gorham so we’ve had to adjust. I still think our chances tonight are pretty good. We’re pretty evenly matched. We’ll be fine,” she continued.

The first half the Eagles kept the Trojans defense on their toes and the goalie very busy. With 4:30 remaining in the first half Eagles Lindsay Arsenault scored the first goal. Aggressive play and determination led to a second goal by midfielder Hannah Kaplan with 2:53 left. With the score 2-0 Eagles, the half would come to a close.

In the second half, Eagles Hannah Kaplan would score her second goal of the night. With the score now 3-0 and time on the side of the Eagles the lead appeared insurmountable. The Trojans would eventually break through the seemingly impregnable Eagle defense and goalie Kaitlyn Roberts with 8:50 left in the game on a score by Trojan Hannah Niles cutting the lead 3-1. 

However, three minutes later Eagles Maggie Symonds would sneak one passed Trojan goalie Abigail Cook who was kept busy all night with 19 total saves. The lead was 4-1 and that is how the game would end.

After the victory Lebel kept it short and sweet to her players, “All right ladies, great game, and way to finish.” Maintaining the energy level takes motivation. “They wanted this tonight.” This is the first time in a few years that the Eagles have not been on a bye. “They didn’t want to go home. They were definitely hungry. I love their enthusiasm.  The defense played smart and worked well together.” Like football, soccer is a game of strategy. “With the wind as a factor tonight, we chose to have the wind at our back during the second half,” continued Lebel.

Up next is the quarterfinal against Cheverus, who they played on September 21st and had to rally in order to secure a tie.

Friday, October 14, 2016

Lady Eagles defeat the Spartans 1-0

On Saturday the Lady Eagles hosted the Sanford Spartans on a beautiful fall day in what proved to be an edge of your seat game. Both teams came out strong and aggressive, wanting the win as badly as the other team.

Through teamwork, strong and quick passes up field the Lady Eagles kept the ball away from their goalie Kaitlyn Roberts. Roberts stepped up and saved multiple shots on goal while throwing her body onto the ball and into the players if needed to defend the net. 

Early in the second half sophomore Meghan Hoffses is able to drive a ball into the Spartans net which would untimely be the only score of the game. Between the effort of making this goal happen and the physicality of the game itself this one goal was enough to pump the Lady Eagles to hold strong the rest of the game. Lady Eagles won 1-0.

Windham High field hockey moves on to playoffs - By Stephanie Coffin

On Saturday morning the Windham girls field hockey team hosted the Marshwood Hawks. The first half of the game was a good match to see who would score first. Though the Hawks fired a few shots on the Eagles goal, the defense was able to keep the ball out of the net. The second half of the game took a turn downhill when the Hawks were able to break through and score. Marshwood won 4-0.

Despite this loss, the varsity field hockey team advances to the playoff season. Saturday they will play Gorham High School at Gorham at 2 p.m. Gorham is ranked eighth and Windham is ranked ninth. Congratulations to our Varsity Field Hockey team for advancing to the playoff season.

There will be an admission charged ($4 for adults / $2 for students) Winner will advance to the quarter finals next Tuesday, according to Windham athletic director Rich Drummond.

Windham Eagles fight hard in 38-10 loss to Bonny Eagle Scots - By Stephen Signor

in week six of an eight game season the Windham Eagles (3-2) faced off against another non-conference rival, the unbeaten Bonny Eagle Scots (5-0) hoping to continue their winning ways following last week’s 27-6 convincing victory over the Edward Little Eddies. The near capacity in attendance was a telltale sign it was the last home game of the season. against an undefeated team can be intimidating. Pre-game preparation for such a task can be the difference between winning and losing. Diffusing the mindset of players about the challenge of facing an undefeated team however is what makes coaching challenging. “Our confidence level is pretty good,” stated Eagles head coach Matt Perkins before the game. Is it different when playing an undefeated team? Not according to Perkins. “It’s key points, and things we anticipate and what they did before us and staying focused on the moment,” he continued.

The game started with Windham’s first possession taking them down to the Scots 28-yard line where on fourth down and six they decided to go for it. They came up short, but did manage to eat up four minutes off the clock. 

The Scots however would have better success. Their opening drive would yield the game’s first score. A 6-yard rushing touchdown by running back Alex Sprague and a failed two point conversion made the score 6-0.

The second quarter would not go any easier for the Eagles. With 9:11 remaining the Scots would strike again. Running back Cam Theberge took the ball in from the six. Another attempt at a 2-point conversion, this one hindered by penalties, would back them up leaving no choice but to go for what would end up being a failed extra point; two possessions, two scores. The result from missed tackles and assignments, the Eagles now trailed 12-0. 

Windham however would successfully mount an impressive drive, scoring on their next possession fueled by a 28-yard pass from quarterback Desmond Leslie to Blake Houser. Another perfect throw from Leslie would find Houser in the end zone. With 8:02 left the Eagles had reduced the Scots lead and now only trailed 12-7. This did not last for long. Running back Sprague and quarterback Day provided two more rushing touchdowns for the Scots and at the half led 24-7.

At the half coach Perkins told his players “We have to fix some things, tighten up certain areas of our game.” Down just two scores at the half it could have been worse, could have been better. “The score could have been closer. We had a chance when the Scot’s fumbled and we tried to pick it up instead of falling on it,” explained Perkins.
Both defenses showed up for the third quarter as neither team would score. Early in the fourth quarter the Eagles stopped the powerful Scot’s offense forcing them into a three and out. With the ensuing punt they mounted a drive to the Scot’s 13-yard line. Three attempts to reach the end zone would prove unsuccessful, but the Eagles walked away with a field goal. The score was 24-10.

The Scot’s would score with 11 minutes to go in the game on a 30-yard connection from Day to Keith Hoffses and again three minutes later when Day took it in on a keeper from Windham’s 22. Eating up most of the clock gave the Eagles little time to mount any kind of successful comeback and the game ended in a 38-10 loss.

“They (Scot’s) have a good balanced attack. The kids played hard and battled to the end. We didn’t do our job and it caught up to us. It’s a learning process,” Perkins said. About the teams overall performance Perkins continued, “But, yeah, there was a lot of missed tackles. We have to do a better job. I thought we moved the ball well in the first half. We didn’t help ourselves on defense. We had a hard time doing the right thing.” He told his players afterwards “you’ve got two choices. When you play great teams you can either walk away or pout about it or you can say great, this is what we got. We can get better.”

Windham’s next contest will be away against the Oxford Hills/Buckfield Vikings (3-3) Game time is 7 p.m.