Friday, December 28, 2018

Girls’ basketball play exceptional defense

Kayla Flanders
By Matt Pascarella

The girls’ JV and varsity basketball teams took on Edward Little on Friday, December 21, at home, for their final game before winter break.

Windham started out aggressive, taking advantage of rebound opportunities which lit up the scoreboard frequently early on in the first half. Windham was pressuring, with strong offense and defense, capitalizing on any mistake Edward Little made. The Lady Eagles didn’t let up, despite their lead of over ten points in the first quarter. They were beating Edward Little to the ball, getting turnovers and sinking baskets left and right.

Half: 38-11 Windham

Windham didn’t stop in the second half. They kept the pressure on and with 5:35 left in the third quarter, Windham was up by thirty points. They continued taking advantage on Edward Little’s mistakes, and the scoreboard reflected it. The Lady Eagles were focused, moving the ball around well with solid offense and defense. Top scorers:  Riley Beem #3, Kayla Flanders #21, Estella Inman #42 and Destiny Potter #45.

Final: 69-22, Windham

“Our kids played really well...improvement has been amazing. In this particular game, everybody scored, which is really a rarity at any level. It was good to see our kids come together and have a good game,” remarked coach EJ Regan.

Meghan Hoffses
Edward Little got a jump on Windham with a twelve-point lead, but the Eagles’ intensity was ramping up. Windham was catching up to Edward Little, working to grab several rebound opportunities in the first half. With a little over two minutes left in the half, the score was tied at 25. You could feel the tension in the air. Shortly before the end of the half, Meghan Hoffses #2, hurls the ball into the air from half court and as the buzzer goes off the ball is mid-air as everyone watches it plunge into the hoop for three points.

Half: 30-27, Windham

The Lady Eagles take the court, eager to put this game in the win column. Their offense and defense were strong; blocking shots as Windham continued adding to the scoreboard, pulling away from Edward Little. At the end of third quarter it was 42-34, Windham. Windham kept up their pace in the fourth quarter, capitalizing on mistakes and sinking baskets.
Top scorers: Hoffses, Hannah Talon #11 and Tara Flanders #33.

Final: 54-40, Windham

“Coming twelve nothing out of the gate, it’s tough to come back mentally from that. The kids did a good job of keeping their composure overall...the girls did a real good job at staying mentally focused. It was a good team defensive effort for us today,” commented coach Brody Artes. 

Windham/Westbrook Hockey crushes it and wins

By Matt Pascarella

The Windham/Westbrook hockey team set the ice on fire against Skowhegan/Lawrence/MCI on Saturday, December 22 at the University of Southern Maine in Gorham.

Windham/Westbrook started strong with Holden Anderson #4 scoring in the first few seconds and then a short time later. Windham/Westbrook had great offense and defense with Derek Corbett #28 scoring. Skowhegan/Lawrence/MCI did score in the first period, but it was their only goal all game.

After one period: 3-1, Windham/Westbrook didn’t slow down in the second period with Travis Brown #7, scoring almost immediately. Tommy Lekousi #11 followed Brown scoring shortly after. Windham/Westbrook was dominating, pressuring and being first to the puck. Before the end of the period, Jake Jeffrey #30 and Austin White #34 scored.

After two periods: 7-1, Windham/Westbrook

Windham/Westbrook continued taking shots on goal and took more than double the shots of Skowhegan/Lawrence/MCI. Colin Casserly #9, Jordan Cantz #27 and Lekousi scored.

Final: 10-1, Windham/Westbrook

“To get the start we did, the goal thirty seconds in; that set the tone for us, the kids realized there’s going to be something here tonight if we go hard and we’re going to be rewarded for it [and they were]” remarked coach Greg LeClair.

Windham wrestling team getting stronger

DJ Pellitier
By Matt Pascarella

Windham/Gray New Gloucester wrestling team hosted Massabesic and Noble, at Windham, on Wednesday, December 19 for the first home game of the season.

Windham vs. Noble
In the 152-pound weight class, George Butts pins his opponent in the first period of play. In the 160-pound weight class Andrew Martin pinned Noble after one period of play. Garrett Allen in the 220-weight class went after his opponent’s leg knocking him off balance and was able to slam him to the mat, getting the pin. Windham fought hard, but Noble took this match.

Final: 64-18, Noble

Windham vs. Massabesic

Windham kept up their intensity and defense to stay alive during the periods. DJ Pelletier, in the 132-pound weight class, battled hard to keep from being flipped on his back. Pelletier kept his head down and was not letting up. Pelletier wins in the third period.

Owen McDuffie in the 145-pound weight class slams his opponent to the mat and keeps Massabesic from getting the opportunity to stand up and retaliate as McDuffie flips Massabesic for the pin.

Several forfeits tipped the score in Massabesic’s favor and they take this match 36-30.

“Those are two of the best teams in the conference. We came out, wrestled hard, and the effort the kids are putting forth on the mat has been extra special. We’re only going to get better,” observed Coach John Nicholas.

Friday, December 21, 2018

Great effort by Windham against Bangor

By Matt Pascarella
Dierhow Bol 

The JV and varsity boys’ basketball teams took on Bangor, at Windham, on Saturday, December 15.

Eric Weisser
The Eagles had strong offense and defense and were moving the ball around nicely. They were working hard to capitalize on Bangor’s mistakes, which created opportunities to take the lead. The Eagles wanted this win and their intensity showed it. Bangor was not far behind, with both teams pressuring. The Eagles were going strong, working to maintain control.

Halftime: 29-26, Windham

The Eagles took to the court in the second half, focused and going for the win. They continued pressuring, with Bangor not far behind. Windham was utilizing Bangor’s mistakes, which resulted in Windham getting several turnovers – lighting up the scoreboard.

With four seconds left in the third quarter, Windham was up by ten. The Eagles were not letting up and with five minutes left in the fourth quarter they had a twenty-point lead over Bangor.
Will Mannette
Bangor’s fate was sealed. Five minutes is a lot of time left in a game, but the Eagles had worked too hard and played so well in 3 plus quarters for Bangor to make a game winning recovery. The Eagle’s intensity didn’t waiver even with a minute left. Top scorers: Will Mannette #24 and Nicholas Garrison #54.

Final: 63-46, Windham

“I’m happy with the way they played. It’s the first time we really pressed from the start of the game and it brought us a lot of energy. That’s the way we needed to play,” commented coach Geoff Grigsby.

Windham started strong, scoring within seconds of the tip-off. The Eagles were taking shots at Bangor’s basket and had good offense and defense. Both teams were within two points of each other early on in the first half. Bangor had a small lead, but Windham was not far behind.

Half: 18-11, Bangor
Windham started the second half taking several shots on Bangor’s basket, but, unfortunately, they weren’t dropping. This enabled Bangor to gain a bigger lead. Windham was working hard to turn this game around. They had great teamwork and were moving the ball nicely, which did close the points gap a little.

After three quarters Bangor lead by twelve. But it was not over, Windham continued to pressure. They were down by nine with a minute left. After giving a solid effort, Bangor takes this one 54-38. Top scorers: Eric Weisser #20 and Dierhow Bol #4.

“The first half we played great defense, we played exactly the way we wanted to play. The guys fought hard and our guys will be ready, and they’ll bounce back. This is a marathon, not a sprint. We’ll be looking for opportunities to get better every day. All we can do is keep working hard,” remarked coach Chad Pulkkinen.

Jordan Small Middle School basketball teams close year with exciting games

Bob Wing
By Matt Pascarella

The Jordan Small Middle School boys and girls basketball teams played their final home games of the year against Durham on Monday, December 17 at Jordan Small Middle School in Raymond.

The boys had a strong first half with excellent teamwork and tough offense and defense; pulling away from Durham before halftime. Raymond was capitalizing on rebound opportunities and turnovers, which gave them over a twenty-point lead at the buzzer.

Half: 31-10, Raymond

The boys came out just as hungry and looking to make sure they did everything to get this win. Their defense prevented Durham from closing the points gap too much, and Raymond’s offense kept the baskets coming. Raymond had excellent teamwork, passing to each other and capitalizing on Durham’s mistakes. Raymond continued to be ahead by over twenty points as the clock wound down. With three minutes left in the fourth, Raymond didn’t stop their defense and continued working to put points on the scoreboard. Final 55-27, Raymond. Top scorers: Bob Wing #52 and Noah Mains #34.“We had a week of practice and we went over playing against the zone and they came right out and did what we practiced. They played together more than they have in any other game,” remarked Coach, Jim Beers.

The Raymond girls also started strong moving the ball around with solid defense in the first half. They and Durham were fairly evenly matched with the score being within a point or two of the competing teams.

Half: 14-11, Durham

Allie Troiano
The Raymond girls worked hard to turn the score around in the second half. Their defense and offense were solid. Raymond was aggressive in going after scoring opportunities and gained a few rebounds to close their points gap with Durham. Raymond worked well as a team, moving the ball around nicely. With roughly three minutes left in the game, Raymond was down by 8. Several fouls by Durham helped to advance Raymond’s score. With a little over a minute left, Raymond trailed by 7. After a great effort by the Raymond girls, Durham took this one 29-24. Allie Troiano #51 was the top scorer of the game and Gabby Ball #10 sunk a sweet three pointer in the first half.

“We had a lot of energy, especially in the second half...they ramped it up and made it a close game at the end. Our team defense and team communication on defense was really strong and our three-point shooting was excellent,” observed coach Ryan Roderick.

Friday, December 14, 2018

WMS teams get it done against Moore Middle School

Dani Iaconeta
By Matt Pascarella

The Windham Middle School (WMS) Lady Eagles seventh and eighth grade basketball teams took on Moore Middle School on Thursday, December 6 at Windham.

Seventh grade:
Windham was a little slow to start in the first quarter, but once they were warmed up in the second quarter, they couldn’t be stopped. The Lady Eagles were moving the ball around well, up and down the court. They had high intensity and teamwork with shots on Moore’s basket. Windham was working hard and capitalizing on mistakes Moore made which equaled several turnover and rebound opportunities for the Lady Eagles. Windham had good offense and defense.

Half: 10-4, Windham 
In the second half, these girls just kept that intensity up. The had excellent passing, continued shots on Moore’s basket, and kept the pressure on. After giving it their all, they earned the ‘W.’ Scorers included: Abby Llyod, #1, Hannah Peterson, #4, Katie Collins, #5, Kelsey Theberge, #11, Georgia Nolan, #12, Maddie Dumont, #14, Mallory Muse, #20 and Shawna Edwards, #21.

Final: 26-20, Windham 

“We find our edge and get into it...once we find each other’s strength’s we really excel. I expect really good things. It’s nice to see scoring come from a variety of people in different games; each game has been a different [player] stepping up, which has been nice,” remarked Coach Deb Lebel.

Eighth grade:
Just like the the seventh grade team, Windham was a little slow to start, too. They quickly found their groove and ran with it – and could not be caught. These Lady Eagles were fast, with excellent ball movement, taking shots on Moore’s basket and capitalizing on Moore’s mistakes. Windham had strong offense and defense. And once they got going, they kept lighting up the scoreboard.
Abby Llyod

Half: 22-14, Windham

Windham did not let up in the second half. Their excellent teamwork gave them a steady lead that resulted in a win. They had great offense and defense, and kept the baskets coming, keeping Moore from being able to catch these Lady Eagles.
Mallory Muse
Scorers included: Abbey Thornton, #22, Gianna West, #11, Casey Downing, #20,  Kylie Garrison, #10, Monique Dakin, #15, Morgan Hammond, #14, Dani Iaconeta, #13, Ashlynn Moorehead, #21, Rhianna Mattox, #23, Liz Talbot, #30 and Elizabeth Levesque, #12.

Final: 48-23, Windham

“It’s a fast-paced team, so as soon as they warm up, they’re always looking down the floor for a fast break,” said Coach Lisa Hodge. “They’re all supportive of each other,” observed Manager Laura Broadbent.

Windham/Westbrook hockey works hard but falls to Brunswick

Cole Washburn
By Matt Pascarella

The Windham/Westbrook hockey team hit the ice at the University of Southern Maine for the first game of the season at home against Brunswick on Saturday, December 8.
Windham/Westbrook started out doing pretty well in the first period with nice teamwork and going after the puck. They took several shots on Brunswick’s goal and managed to keep Brunswick from scoring until, with roughly three minutes left in the first period, Brunswick scored.

First intermission: 1-0, Brunswick

Windham/Westbrook came out with intensity in the second period. Although Brunswick scored twice within the first three minutes, Windham/Westbrook persevered, but needed to be crisper offensively, said Coach Greg LeClair. of the highlights of the game was freshman Cole Washburn who helped to contribute by taking the only shot on goal in the second half. “He worked hard, skated hard and was positive on the bench,” commented LeClair.

Second intermission: 4-0, Brunswick

In the final period, Windham/Westbrook looked to turn the game around. They were moving the puck nicely and while they did get a few shots on goal,  nothing went into the net.

Final 6-0, Brunswick

“Not the start we were hoping for tonight...when you’re not first to the puck, you’re not going to be successful. We as a team need to be better defensively and quicker to the puck. If you take care of those two things, a lot of other things just fall into place,” observed LeClair. “We’ll get better, we’re still young. We’ve got to do some different things to matchup against teams; we’ll get there; it’s a process and we’d all like the process to be instantaneous and sometimes it doesn’t work out that way.”

Friday, December 7, 2018

Rep. Fay to hold local office hours

Rep. Jessica Fay, D-Raymond, will hold in-district “constituent hours” in Casco, Poland and Raymond in December.

These meetings will be held at the following places and times:

Poland - Monday, December 10 from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. at the Ricker Memorial Library (downstairs conference room) at 1211 Maine Street.

Casco - Tuesday, December 11 from 5 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. at the Casco Town Office, 635 Meadow Road.

Raymond - Wednesday, December 12 from 5 p.m. to 6:30 p.m., Raymond Village Library, 3 Meadow Road.

The office hours will provide residents with an opportunity to hear updates from Augusta, ask questions about policy making and share opinions on state matters. Office hours also serve as an opportunity for residents navigating state agencies to voice their concerns.

Fay, who represents part of Casco, part of Poland and part of Raymond, was sworn in for her second term on December 5. She serves on the Legislature’s Environment and Natural Resources Committee.

Frost sisters bring their knowledge to WYBA

Stephanie (far left) and Samantha (far right)
By Matt Pascarella

Stephanie and Samantha Frost have basketball in their veins. They each played Windham Youth Basketball when they were in elementary school as well as playing on their high school teams for Windham and during college. Now, the sisters are hitting the court in a different way, as coaches for the Windham Youth Basketball Association.

Stephanie and Samantha have played basketball together and even talked about coaching together. When their younger sister, Emma, began participating in Windham Youth Basketball, “it sparked something in both of us and we just wanted to take it on together,” explained Samantha Frost.

Windham Youth Basketball was very positive for both Stephanie and Samantha. Samantha remembers the number of people who would show up for the games and the level of experience between teams. She also remembers the togetherness of the community and the friendships made. In Samantha’s senior year in high school, she had the same five girls playing on the court beside her as she did in third grade.
“Looking back, the coaches you have in your life are role models, you look up to them and they become a big part of your life,” recalls Stephanie. “I wanted to be one of these people who have a positive impact on these boys and girls’ be able to share my love of basketball.”

They wanted to become coaches now because of their love of the game “and our dream of always wanting and finally having an opportunity to do that with our younger sister; being involved in her life and then giving back to a program that has given so much to us, in a community that has done the same.” says Stephanie.

“It’s a great opportunity to get back with the game again. Even after the first practice, I walked away thinking this is awesome,” noted Samantha.

Their younger sister, Emma, is in the fifth grade and has been participating in Windham Youth Basketball since first grade. Stephanie and Samantha want to experience as much of Emma’s youth as they can, so for Stephanie and Samantha to be a part of the program and see what Emma experiences while being able to be there for her games is a great family experience for all of them.

The Frost sisters think Windham Youth Basketball is important because it gives kids a fun, safe place where they can let loose, make and build friendships and establish a real feeling of community. It teaches kids discipline and that you can work hard and have fun at the same time. You have to challenge yourself. Discipline, patience and not “going through the motions” makes for a good basketball player.“Steph and Sam are truly a wonderful example of giving back to a sport that helped shape them into the women they have become,” said Pat Moody president of Windham Youth Basketball Association. “Their parents are also coaching this year and were very involved in Windham Youth Basketball when the girls were young. It is clear that basketball is a passion for this family and established the foundation for their love for the game.”

Varsity girls’ basketball team ready to make it happen this season

By Matt Pascarella

The varsity girls, basketball team took on Skowhegan in a preseason game at Windham on Tuesday, December 4.

Windham was aggressive right out of the gate, with strong teamwork, moving the ball around their opponents nicely. Skowhegan jumped to a small but early lead and it didn’t take the Lady Eagles long to pull ahead. Windham gave 110%, keeping the two teams close, with only a few points separating the score in the first half. It was neck and neck with Windham up 10 to 9 at one point in the second quarter, then the score was tied at 12.

Half: 14-13, Windham

Both teams were giving it their all at the start of the second half. The Lady Eagles had pulled out to a small lead, but Skowhegan was right behind them, even leading at one point 19 to 18. Windham quickly turned the tables, leading 25-21. Windham’s good offense and defense kept Skowhegan from taking a serious lead.

The Lady Eagles were not slowing down. They continued to move the ball around well, taking multiple shots on Skowhegan’s basket. Windham lead by five, but there was still four minutes left on the clock. A short time later, Windham lead by three with 57 seconds left. At the final buzzer the Lady Eagles had taken this one 42 to 37.

Top scorers included Meghan Hoffses, #2, and Hannah Talon, #11. Anna Drummond, #13, sunk a three pointer in the fourth quarter.

“The girls played alright,” remarked coach Brody Artes. “It’s early in the season, so they made some mistakes, but overall, I think our experience came through at the end; we held it together when we needed to and we did alright.” In the upcoming season, “we can look forward to a quality basketball team that’s fun to watch...score some points and really play lockdown defense; should be a fun year.”
The girl’s first home game is Tuesday, December 11 against Portland. JV plays at 5:30 p.m., Varsity at 7 p.m.

Varsity boys’ basketball starts strong in pre-season game

By Matt Pascarella

The Windham Eagles hit the court for a pre-season game against Freeport on Friday, November 30 at the South Portland Community Center.

The Eagles took control immediately, scoring multiple times in the first half and maintaining a
Eric Weisser
comfortable lead with the score being 20 to 9. The team came out with high intensity and did not let that intensity drop. Windham had a solid defense, staying ahead of Freeport for all of the game, though Freeport was not far behind.

Windham was working well together and moving the ball around nicely, with fast passing and taking shots on Freeport’s basket. Dierhow Bol, #10, had a nice slam dunk and Eric Weisser, #20, sunk a three pointer at the buzzer to end the first half with Windham up 34-15.

Windham did not let up in the second half. They continued to move the ball around well. The Eagles kept their lead and had good offense and defense, with Windham keeping a ten-point lead for most of the second half.

Although Freeport got several turnovers against Windham; the Falcons couldn’t stop the Eagles with the final score 48-37. Top scorers included Bol and Chris Naylor, #25. Kaleb Cidre #5 and Sean Cunniffe #14 each sunk three pointers.

“Our guys are getting better every day,” commented Coach Chad Pulkkinen. “The guys were up off the bench...excited when players are sacrificing for the team, that’s what we want to be about. These guys are aiming that style of togetherness. We talk about it every day, to stick together no matter what and tonight...the players worked hard and I couldn’t be prouder of them with their effort.”
The boy’s first home games are Friday, December 7 against Cheverus with first team at 4 p.m., JV at 5:30 p.m. and varsity at 7 p.m.