Friday, February 22, 2019

Results from the Sebago Lake Ice Fishing Derby

First place pike winner, David Gushee 

Over 850 registrants enjoyed a perfect weekend for ice fishing at the Sebago Lake and Cumberland County Derby this past weekend. Over 1000 fish were donated to be processed by Nova Seafood in Portland resulting in over 550 pounds of filets which will go to food pantries locally. This is an event that attract fishermen from all over the state. If you have never had the opportunity to be a part of this spectacle on ice, be sure to consider joining in on the fun next year. Tentative dates have been set for February 22 to 23, 2020. Follow posts on the Sebago Lake Rotary on Facebook or their webpage at

Congratulations to the following winners:

Prize winners included Joshua Martin McNaughton who won an ATV courtesy of Windham Powersports and Jim Goodale who won a Mercury outboard courtesy of Panther Run Marina

Togue- #1- 33 1/16 inches  10:54 lbs Justin Elliot 
             #2 -33 1/16 inches  10.10 lbs  Josh Watson  
             #3- 25 3/4 inches    5.6 lbs  Koral Smith 

Pickerel : #1 -24 1/4 inches   3.64 lbs  Jesse Allen 
                #2 -24 3/4 inches   3.45 lbs Tim LaBreck 
                #3- 24 3/4 inches   3.3 lbs  Jesse Allen Jr. 

Pike:  #1-35 3/4 inches   11.9 lbs  David Gushee 
          #2-32 inches  7.7 lbs   Warren Mills 
          #3- 29 inches   5.92 lbs  Benjamin Carlin 

Perch:  #1-13 1/4 inches  1.42 lbs  Jacob Burrows 
Also #2  13 1/4 inches 1.36 lbs Jacob Burrows 
           #3:13 inches 1.35 lbs Nick Gallant 

Students and staff basketball teams compete with one another

It is an annual tradition every year, just prior to winter break. The staff at Jordan Small Middle School, take on the girls and boys basketball teams in two separate games. Below (above) are photos from the Friday, February 15 games.
Staff member, Michael Martin shoots a 2 pointer

Bob Wing takes it down the court

Kylugh Hovey shoots for a goal

Hunter Simpson slips by Coach Beers

Girls varsity basketball battle against Deering

Lexi Hirning
By Matt Pascarella

Second placed Windham girls’ basketball team took on seventh placed Deering, at home on Thursday, February 14 for the quarterfinal tournament game.

The game began with a slow start, with neither team scoring in the first several minutes of play. Windham had good defense early on in the game. The Lady Eagles were aggressive, going after the ball. Despite their intensity and taking a handful of shots on Deering’s basket, Windham was scoreless after the first quarter. The Lady Eagles kept taking every opportunity possible to take a shot at the net, but they weren’t falling. Deering sunk several three-pointers which enabled them to pull away.

Half: 20-5, Deering

The Lady Eagles picked up the pace with Meghan Hoffses #2, Lexi Hirning #24, Kayla Gorman #15 and Sarah Talon #12 all sinking three-pointers in the second half. Windham was capitalizing on any oversight by Deering; getting rebounds and turnovers. Windham had made significant headway with the score 28-16, Deering after three quarters. Tensions were rising and the excitement was palpable as the Windham fans cheered loudly every time a basket was made. The girls didn’t let up, getting rebounds and adding points to the scoreboard. While their effort was substantial, they couldn’t turn things around and beat Deering. Top scorers: Hoffses, Talon, Gorman and Tara Flanders #33.

Final: 41-26, Deering“Deering played with more intensity on both sides of the floor from start to finish. We had a better effort as a team in the second half, but we had dug ourselves too big a hole to climb out of in the first half. Our outside shots didn’t fall for us in the first half, and we weren’t aggressive enough in the paint to adjust for that,” commented Coach Brody Artes.

Coach Artes reflected on the season:

“We had to deal with a lot of adversity throughout the course of the second half of the year, and some younger players stepped up and put forth some great efforts at making our team more competitive. Losing a player to injury is never easy for any team to overcome, but I was proud of the efforts of some to adjust to the shift. I am really looking forward to next year and years to come. We have some good young talent that was showcased during our JV team’s season, as well as some key members returning from this year’s varsity team.”

Varsity boys’ basketball give it their all

Dierhow Bol
By Matt Pascarella

The varsity boys’ basketball team headed to Edward Little for the quarterfinal game of the playoff season. Seventh placed Windham hit the court against second place Edward Little on Wednesday, February 13.

Windham won the tip off, gaining possession immediately. The game had a slow start with both teams scoring very little in the first quarter. The Eagles had good defense, keeping Edward Little in check. Windham was moving the ball around nicely and sunk multiple three pointers in the first half. The game was close. Edward Little had a slight lead, but Windham was doing everything to gain on them.

Half: 21-14, Edward Little

The Eagles started the second half very aggressive, pressuring Edward Little, fighting and beating them to the ball. Windham had strong offense and defense. They were blocking shots, getting rebounds and capitalizing on turnover opportunities, putting Windham within six points of the lead after the third quarter. Edward Little had maintained their lead, but Windham was not letting up. The boys battled hard and played one heck of a game, but in the end were not able to catch Edward Little.

Top scorers: Dierhow Bol #10, scoring twelve points and Andrew Wing #22, who sunk four three-pointers. 45-34, Edward Little

“It was unbelievable. They executed; they executed the whole game,” commented coach Chad Pulkkinen. “[I am] nothing but proud of these guys the way they battled. They prepared extremely hard for these guys...we played extremely hard on the defensive end against a team that could very well go and win it all and we were right there. Dierhow and Andrew were great leaders.”

Coach Pulkkinen also reflected on the season:

“This team is so coachable. We came together as a team and in doing that we were able to achieve some things that people didn’t think we could from day one. They stuck together as brothers and if you can do that you can achieve a lot. It was a pleasure to coach them all season.”

Friday, February 15, 2019

Windham Parks and Recreation’s Hot Shot competition showcases skill

Tyrie James
By Matt Pascarella

The Maine Recreation and Parks Association (MRPA) in conjunction with the Maine Red Claws Basketball team, held their annual Hot Shot competition for nine to 15-year-olds on Saturday February, 9 at the Windham High School gym. Windham Youth Basketball Association was also in attendance to assist with the event.

MRPA holds local Hot Shot competitions all over the state. Winners from those competitions then compete in a regional competition and the winners from those go on to compete in a state Hot Shot competition during halftime at a Red Claws game. players compete against the clock and have three rounds where they shoot as many baskets as possible in one minute from designated locations on the court. Each location is worth different point totals so there is strategy in shooting. The players also earn a bonus point for attempting shots from each spot.

Lynn Bucknell, the recreation coordinator for the Windham Parks and Recreation Department said the Hot Shot competition has been going on for roughly ten to twelve years and the Red Claws got involved about six to seven years ago as an extra incentive to increase attendance.
The goal of the event is for the “kids to have fun,” explained Bucknell. “These kids love to shoot hoops and they’re going through their basketball season and lets us see how good they are under pressure.”

Size was not a factor for the young kids as they were sinking basket after basket, most from relatively far away. It was very impressive. There was a high energy to these hard-working competitors; you could tell basketball was in their bones. Everyone was having a very good time.
Afterwards, the following individuals advanced to the regional competition, which will be held during school vacation week:

Nine to 10-year-olds: Sean Lebel and Boston Krainis
Eleven to 12-year-olds: Tyrie James and John McQuaid
Fourteen to 15-year-olds: Emma Ammons

Ski team gives heart and soul at SMAAs

Cordelia Inman
By Matt Pascarella

The Windham boys’ and girls’ ski team competed in the Southwestern Maine Activities Association contest at Shawnee Peak in Bridgton on Friday, February 8.  The SMAAs are the final race every team member can participate in; coaches then pick their top six racers to attend the state competition.
The first race of the day was giant slalom. The athletes had great conditions, considering it had rained all morning. The sun was out, and everyone was in great spirits.

The girls did a great job with everyone giving it their all.

Freshman Sarah Hare placed first overall with a combined time of 1:27.37. After her first run she had the lead by two seconds which is very impressive in any race, especially being a freshman racing against seniors.

Senior Naomi Debrosse placed 18th overall with a combined time of 1:47.91.

Senior and first-time racer, Miranda Lewis placed 26th. Junior Madelynn McGary placed 33rd. Senior and first-time racer, Riley Gardner placed 34th. Freshman and first-time racer, Lauren DeLuca placed 35th. Senior Avery Rolfe placed 36th

The girls placed 5th out of 6th teams overall in the giant slalom. were only two boys racing, which was not enough to place as a team. Junior Benjamin White had a great run finishing 24th and Junior Owen Flibbert placed 40th.

The second half of the day was the slalom race. Freshman Sarah Hare had another great two runs and placed third overall with a combined time of 2:17.11.

Senior Naomi Debrosse placed 21st overall. Captain and Senior Cordelia Inman placed 26th.
Senior Avery Rolfe placed 30th. Senior Riley Gardner placed 32nd.  Freshman Lauren DeLuca placed 37th. Unfortunately, Junior Madelynn McGary fell on her second run, but was able to finish 38th overall.
For the boys’ team, Junior Benjamin White placed 22nd overall and Junior Owen Flibbert placed 38th.

“You can really see the improvement of the racers from the first practice to SMAAs, it’s a great indicator for how they will do at states. We are very lucky that states this year are held at Shawnee Peak. The athletes have been training and racing there all season and even got to preview what the giant slalom course will look like,” observed coach Emily Atwood.

Friday, February 8, 2019

Windham/Westbrook hockey puts forth best effort

By Matt Pascarella

The Windham/Westbrook hockey team took on Gorham on Tuesday, February 5 at the University of Southern Maine in Gorham.

Derek Corbett
The boys started strong, with excellent teamwork. After several goals were scored early on by Gorham, Windham/Westbrook was working hard to be first to the puck to seize scoring opportunities. They were moving the puck around nicely, and roughly halfway through the first period, Derek Corbett #28, gets one in the net.

End of first period: 4-1, Gorham

Windham/Westbrook stepped up their defense in the second period. They had a strong start and were pressuring Gorham, working to even out the score. Windham/Westbrook more than doubled the shots they took on Gorham’s goal in the second period from the first period. Their defensive effort paid off, as Gorham only got one goal in the second period.

End of second period: 5-1, Gorham

Windham/Westbrook hit the ice in the third and final period to try to turn this game around. They came out aggressive and for the first half of the period had pretty good defense; keeping the puck away from their goal. Windham/Westbrook increased their shots on Gorham’s goal, though nothing went in. Gorham was pressuring hard and managed to score several more times before the buzzer. 9-1, Gorham

“In spurts we played to our capabilities; unfortunately, we just don’t string enough of that together,” commented coach Greg LeClair. “We had some good moments when we were keeping Gorham to the outside. The second period I thought we played our best hockey of the night; the effort was there. We’re trying to find our footing, and it’ll come. It’s important to have the kids understand that while the results aren’t there on the scoreboard, every day they show up to practice and put forth their best effort, the results will get closer.”

Indoor track teams prepare for championships

By Matt Pascarella

The boys’ and girls’ indoor track teams competed against Noble, Bonny Eagle, Deering, Gorham, Marshwood, South Portland and Thornton Academy on Saturday, February 2 at the University of Southern Maine in Gorham.
Matthew Fox

In every event, Windham athletes were pushing themselves to the limit. They were focused, not giving up, using every ounce of energy they had as the crowd and their teammates cheered them on.Windham athletes showed their hard work and endurance placing near the top in several events.

In the girls’ division, Katelyn Smith set a new school record in the triple long jump with a score of 34-05.75 inches.

Morgan Colangelo came in second in the girls 400-meter dash, senior division with a time of 1:08.14.
Hailey Applebee came in third in the 2-mile run, open division with a time of 12:41.89.

Mckenzie Crossman placed in the top ten in the girls 200-meter dash junior division with a time of 29.73 seconds.

Windham placed fifth in the 4x200 meter relay open division with a time of 1:59.03.

In the boys’ division, Boden Sabasteanski came in second in the 55-meter dash junior division with a time of 7.23 seconds. the boys 200-meter dash junior division Tavi Anghel placed in the top ten with a time of 27.45 seconds.

In the high jump, Matthew Fox placed fourth with a height of 5-2.00 feet.

In the 600-yard dash, Anthony Sawyer placed first with a time of 1:20.22.

In the boys 4x800 meter relay open division, Windham came in first with a time of 8:57.00.

In the end, Windham placed seventh (out of nine) with a score of 90 for the girls and the boys placed fifth (out of eight) with a score of 89.

The team had some solid performances as we prepare for the Championships, remarked coach Paula Pock. “This season the team has worked hard, and we’ve been very impressed at how well they work together as a group, evidenced by the relay records broken this season: boys’ distance medley relay and 4x400 and the boys’ 4x800 set a record today.” 

Friday, February 1, 2019

Sports run deep for boys’ basketball coach George McCrillis

Coach McCrillis
By Matt Pascarella

Athletics is ingrained in coach George McCrillis. With approximately 20 years of experience, he is currently the assistant boys’ varsity coach at Windham High School and has also been coaching boys and girls in javelin for the Windham High track and field teams. Prior to this, he coached youth basketball and track for the Windham area.

Aside from his team-oriented coaching responsibilities, McCrillis also trains individuals at the college level in javelin; most recently for University of Maine at Orono, Holy Cross and Tufts.
McCrillis became interested in javelin during high school because he had quite an arm and the skill to throw objects far. After a track coach asked him to consider the javelin, McCrillis researched the sport and practiced, becoming self-taught. In 1976, he became the Maine state high school champion in javelin and one year later became the number two prep school javelin thrower in all of New England.

A shoulder injury caused him to give up the javelin, and he didn’t throw for a long time. Through coaching high school track, he got back into throwing again. He had been coaching a student, Chris Dowling, in javelin who was impressed by how far McCrillis could throw. Dowling challenged him that if Dowling qualified in the state championship and came in the top three, McCrillis would start competing again. Dowling qualified and placed second. McCrillis began throwing javelin again and went on to compete at the national level, going to the USA track and field national championships and placing fifth in the country in 2008.

Over the course of his high school and college careers, McCrillis played football, basketball, track and soccer. He learned after adulthood that athletics taught him a lot. In his full-time role as salesman, he has applied things like teamwork, working as hard as you can, etc. into his career and has contributed what he has learned from athletics to his professional success. always felt like he wanted to give back. He had had some very good coaches including basketball coach Tom Maines, who’s in the New England Basketball Hall of Fame; the only coach to have back-to-back-to-back class A championships at Morse High in Bath. Maines told McCrillis he felt like he was a coach on the court. “I love sports, I follow sports, I played sports. I found it gave me an opportunity to make connections with kids. That has been the big driving force. I have connections with kids; even after they graduate, they’ll call me. I love the mentoring of kids. It [coaching] gives me an opportunity to give back and I’m getting a lot out of it,” McCrillis said.

And his efforts have been noticed. Last year he was asked to speak at commencement, which was quite an honor and meant a lot to him. And in 2017, McCrillis and assistant coach Peter Brown both received awards for ten years of service to Maine high school basketball.

Originally from the Rumford/Mexico area, but now a Windham resident, McCrillis has three kids. He describes athletics as always going on in their house. He has two boys, one of whom plays on the varsity basketball and varsity soccer teams and a step daughter. His wife Shari is the executive director of Soccer Maine, a statewide non-profit for youth soccer in Maine.

Windham High School swimming team update

Evan Desmond

Twelve Eagle swimmers have currently qualified to compete at a state meet in individual events. With two remaining meets to qualify in individual events, there may still be several others joining these swimmers at the state meet at Bowdoin College on February 18 (Boys) and 19 (Girls).

Way to go Windham Swim Team!

Marley Jarvais and Olivia McPherson holding the flag
This is the 10th season WYBA (Windham Youth Basketball) has partnered with the Maine Red Claws to host “Windham Night at the Red Claws”. It is a fun filled community night where Windhamites fill the stands and cheer on our local NBA G League team. Windham Night is also a fundraiser for Windham where $4 from every Windham ticket is donated back to WYBA. This year we had an estimated 400 Windhamites in attendance. The Red Claws provide numerous pregame activities and time out activities for Windham fans to become an active part of the experience. This year WYBA invited the Windham Athletic Boosters to come administer the 50/50 to raise money for high school athletics. Windham High School athletic boosters raised over $600 at Windham Night with the Red Claws.

Strong start to the season for unified basketball

AJ Mains

By Matt Pascarella

The unified basketball team had their first game of the season, at home, against Thornton Academy on Friday, January 25.

Windham had excellent teamwork and nice hustle right out of the gate. They had great defense as well, grabbing a couple rebound opportunities from Thornton Academy. Windham was giving 110%, working hard to beat Thornton Academy to the ball. Austin Rice #3 sunk an outstanding shot from far away. While Thornton Academy had a small lead early on, the entire team had sunk so many baskets, they were catching up.

Half: 29-20, Thornton Academy

The Eagles hit the court for the second half focused and ready to keep up the good work. Windham had solid offense and defense. They were moving the ball around nicely with continued excellent teamwork. Windham kept sinking shots, putting points on the scoreboard. The Eagles gave it everything they had, but at the buzzer, Thornton Academy narrowly got by, 61-50.

Everyone scored: James Tucker #50, Kayla Fillinger #31, Janson Dion #25, Cameron Malone #33, Natalle Medina #4, AJ Mains #35, Ben Silva #34, Brianna Webber #5 and Austin Rice.

“Phenomenal, great team sportsmanship; great sportsmanship with the other team. We scored fifty points and I couldn’t be happier,” exclaimed coach Anne Blake.

Raymond basketball plays well against Durham

Kiley Hovey
By Matt Pascarella

The Raymond boys’ and girls’ basketball teams hit the court against Durham at Jordan-Small Middle School in Raymond on Monday, January 28.

The boys started strong by pressuring right away. Raymond was working well together and jumped out to a significant lead in the first quarter. Raymond had excellent offense and defense, preventing Durham from scoring at all in the first quarter. Raymond was capitalizing on any Durham mistakes. Despite Raymond’s strong defense, Durham had made it onto the scoreboard and was not far behind.

Half: 22-11, Raymond

Raymond kept it up in the second half, getting turnover opportunities and pulling away from Durham. The boys dominated and were up by twenty points after three quarters. Durham was working hard to catch up, but it was too late. Raymond continued taking shots on basket and added to the score. At the buzzer: 36-20, Raymond. Top scorers: Chase Wescott #14, and Noah Mains #34.

“When we come out and we pass - that’s when we hold the lead,” said coach Jim Beers.

Girls began taking shots at Durham’s hoop from the start. It was a low scoring first quarter for both teams with Durham only up by three points after one quarter. The Raymond girls were giving 110%, working to get ahead. They had solid teamwork and passing.

Half: 8-6, Durham

Raymond came into the second half with good defense, getting rebounds which enabled them to tie the game at eight with five minutes left in the third quarter. The girls weren’t far behind Durham, as they continued to take shot after shot at the net. After three quarters, it was 15-14, Durham. The girls took every opportunity to capitalize on Durham’s mistakes. These girls didn’t give up until the final buzzer. Unfortunately, Durham slipped by 24-14.
Top scorers: Kiley Hovey #32 and Macie Ennis #13.

“A lot of things went well. Things we’ve been working on all year. We’ve progressed, we were finding each other, we had a ton of open looks and great shots, they just weren’t falling. I’m proud of our defense, offense, every part of the game that we played,” commented coach Ryan Roderick.