Friday, May 28, 2021

Windham senior Brady Afthim throws no-hitter

By Matt Pascarella

Windham senior Brady Afthim threw a no-hitter during the
first game of a doubleheader against Deering on Saturday,
May 22. Afthim had 19 strikeouts and only one walk,
throwing a total of just 83 pitches and leading Windham to
a 6-1 win over Deering. PHOTO BY MATT PASCARELLA
Windham’s varsity baseball team faced Deering in a double-header at home on Saturday, May 22, and it’s a day that senior Brady Afthim will long remember.

Pitching for the Eagles in the first game of the doubleheader, Afthim hurled a no-hitter, striking out 19 Deering batters and leading Windham to a 6-1 victory over the Rams.

Earlier in the season, Windham had scrimmaged Deering and Afthim had success during that scrimmage, so he was excited to be on the mound and very confident going into game one of the double-header.

Afthim pitched all seven innings, only walking one batter during the entire game and allowing one run. He threw a total of 83 pitches during the game.

As the game progressed, Afthim said he knew he had the no-hitter in his reach, but he did not focus on it. Instead, he said that he was trying to get outs as quickly as possible with as few pitches as he could.

“Brady was locked in, took the game pitch by pitch and ended up with a result that most pitchers don’t experience,” Windham Varsity Baseball Coach Cody Dube said. “He will remember that game for a long time.”

Dube said he was happy for Afthim and it was an awesome game to watch. He said no hitters are rare, especially ones with 19 strikeouts.

“I think every pitcher goes out there hoping to throw one (no-hitter) so it's really cool to have that be the reality for that game and the personal record for strikeouts is just the cherry on top,” said Afthim.<

First Team baseball falls to Thornton Academy, but shows promise for future

By Matt Pascarella

The 14-1 loss by Windham baseball’s First Team game against Thornton Academy on Friday, May 21 at Thornton Academy in Saco might have given an unknowing spectator the wrong impression about what the game was really like.

Freshman Aiden Benish catches a pop fly during
Windham baseball's First Team game against
Thornton Academy on Friday, May 21 in Saco.
That score did not reflect the effort the Eagles put forth during that game. It doesn’t reflect the improved fielding abilities of the mostly freshman first team. It also doesn’t show how good the pitching was. Regardless of outcome, this team is always improving.

Windham did get things going against Thornton Academy in the top of the first when freshman Owen Dakin rocketed the ball into the outfield for a double.

In the top of the third inning, Windham’s defense caught a Thornton Academy player in a rundown – being stuck between two bases – tagged him and got the out.

"I think we did pretty good,” said sophomore Corey Libby. “We hit the ball, we made plays; honestly, I think ... we can get better.”

Even if Windham wasn’t getting on base, the encouragement I heard from the Eagle’s bench was extremely positive. They kept it going until the very end.

In the top of the seventh and final inning, Windham put some of their skill on display when freshman Jacob Goslant got a base hit. Next, freshman Nathan Jordan did the same. Sophomore Jordan Libby got behind the ball, sent it flying and got on base. Sophomore Corey Libby followed his teammates and got a base hit. Now the bases are loaded. After a ball got by the catcher, freshman Jordan crossed home plate to put Windham on the scoreboard.

“We just got to keep coming in every day and focusing on what we did well,” said coach Noah Estey. “We keep getting better even if the score doesn’t show it.” <

Windham tennis teams earn end-of-season wins

By Matt Pascarella

Windham’s boys’ and girls’ tennis teams played their final home matches of the 2021 spring season against Deering and Cheverus earlier this week and both emerged with victories.

Windham senior Rebecca Hamel eyes the ball after
she took a powerful swing to send it over the net
during Windham's final girls' tennis home matches 
of the season against Cheverus on Tuesday, May 25.
The boys played Deering on Monday, May 24 and gave a very strong effort to earn them a 5-0 win. The girls played challenging opponent Cheverus on Tuesday, May 25. They beat Cheverus when they played them at Cheverus earlier in the season and left everything on the court in Tuesday’s match to earn a very respectable 4-1 win.

Both events featured senior night activities for Windham. Emilia Antonya, Hayden Bilodeau, Baxter Chavonelle, Rebecca Hamel, Devon Harnden, Lukas Hradecky, Gavin Lombard, Gabriel McPhail, Chloe McVetty, Nicole Snow and Gianna Stevens were all presented with gifts to thank them and their families for the time and effort they had put in throughout their high school tennis careers. 


Seniors Lukas Hradecky, Gabriel McPhail and Devon Harnden all had high intensity on the court and won their singles matches. Hradecky won 6-1 and 6-3, McPhail won 6-0 and 6-0 and Harnden won 6-4 and 6-0. Bilodeau and Chavonelle along with Lombard and Windham junior Will Searway all won their doubles matches as Deering forfeited them.

Hradecky had already played against his opponent, so he knew what to expect. Hradecky thought the team had a really good collective year and he enjoyed playing several good matches against other teams.

“They did great,” said Windham coach Garry Stone. For Stone, playing Deering was good experience as the team approached the final match of the year against Cheverus (which Windham won).

“As the years (have) gone on everybody’s playing better; I’d say it’s a pretty successful season,” said Stone.


Cheverus and Windham were very equally paired during these intense matches. Windham knew what to expect and were nervous.

In the singles matches, Hamel won 6-4 and 7-5. Windham sophomore Grace Paiement won 7-6, 3-7, and 6-4. Windham freshman Alyssa Conley won 6-0 and 6-0.

“I feel really good,” said Snow. “I’m really happy that we won, it was challenging. It was very competitive. I think it’s been the best season this year.”

In the doubles matches McVetty and Snow won 6-3, 4-6 and 7-5. Windham Junior Lauren DeLuca and Stevens lost 6-2 and 6-3.

“A 4-1 win doesn’t really express how close each match was,” said Windham coach Katy Dresnok. “My players have just really improved leaps and bounds since the beginning of the season.” <

Friday, May 21, 2021

Windham Little League softball Merchant Focus holds off Gorham/Massabesic

By Matt Pascarella

Windham eighth grader Addison Leger slides into
home with the winning run after tagging up in the
bottom of the sixth inning during Windham Little
League softball junior division team's Merchant
Focus' game against Gorham/Massabesic at
Windham on Tuesday, May 18. 

Windham Little League’s junior division softball team Merchant Focus took on Gorham/Massabesic at Windham on Tuesday, May 18 and despite jumping to an early lead, Merchant Focus pushed ahead late to come away with a 6-5 victory to remained undefeated. 

Merchant Focus eighth grader Chloe Edwards got things started with a double against Gorham/Massabesic and eighth grader Dakota Small also doubled with Edwards scoring a run.

In the third inning, Gorham/Massabesic tied the game at one.

Merchant Focus got the bats swinging in the fourth inning. Edwards hit a ground ball and got on base after an error by the third baseman. Small doubled again; a short time later Merchant Focus took the lead after a run scored on a wild pitch. Small scored. Seventh grader Oakley McLeod singled. Eighth grader Kennedy Kimball doubled to center field. McLeod scored on a passed ball. Kimball scored. Merchant Focus led 5-1.

“I think since Gorham has been our toughest competitor so far, it kind of lit a little spark in me to play as hard as I could,” said Small.

She said the team knew Gorham is really good in every sport they play and it pushed them to work harder. Small said that she thought everyone did a great job.

In the sixth inning, Gorham/Massabesic tied the game at 5-5 but in the bottom of the inning, Merchant Focus eighth grader Addison Leger singled. After Edwards popped-up for an out, Leger stole home; to make it, 6-5, with Merchant Focus ahead.

Gorham/Massabesic had one final chance to score and force a tie in the bottom of the seventh inning, but solid pitching from eighth grader Sierra Sparrow, coupled with Merchant Focus’ field defense, prevented Gorham/Massabesic from doing so and Merchant Focus got a win and remained unbeaten.    

“Coming off last year, where we had nothing to this year, skill development is all fundamental; we are trying to get the girls better,” said Merchant Focus coach, Kregg Jarvais. “It’s all about at bats and playing time ... and getting people out of their comfort zone, in different positions, as they develop in their games.” <

Windham’s Emma Yale scores 100th goal in lacrosse win over Bonny Eagle

The Windham Lady Eagles girls' lacrosse team congratulates
senior Emma Yale on scoring her 100th career goal on Friday,
May 14 at Bonny Eagle High School. PHOTO BY
By Matt Pascarella

Senior Emma Yale scored her 100th high school career goal, the second player to accomplish this in Windham’s history, during the girls’ lacrosse game against Bonny Eagle on Friday, May 14 at Bonny Eagle in Standish. Along with this massive accomplishment, the Lady Eagles flattened the Lady Scots with a 20-7 win.

Yale only needed two goals during this game to reach 100, but she scored more than that. Almost immediately into the first half, Yale put one between the posts. Senior Carissa O’Connell followed and scored three times in the first half. Junior Isabelle Babb also scored. Windham was aggressive right out of the gate and didn’t slow down for the entire game.

One goal away, Yale was right in front of Bonny Eagle’s net, wound up and took the shot; right past the keeper for goal 100. An announcement was made and she was congratulated by her teammates.

“It was really cool (to score the 100th goal) because it had been a goal of mine and to do it with all my teammates with me, it meant a lot” said Yale.

It wasn’t a solo effort for her. She couldn’t have done it without the help of her teammates and coaches.

“What so impressive about her 100 is it’s not selfish play, it’s hard work, it’s traps, it’s getting in to drop the ball, it’s team lacrosse; it’s not individual at all,” said Windham coach Matt Perkins.

Perkins said that he was not at all surprised she accomplished this impressive achievement and said she would have done it last year, had it not been for the pandemic.

Windham’s tour de force was not finished. After goal 100, Yale would score two more times in the first half. Junior Molly Black scored. Senior Riley Beem scored three goals before halftime. As the clock wound down, with less than 10 seconds left in the half, Babb put another between the posts. Windham was up 13-4 at the half.

The second half brought more of Windham’s intensity in a game that was already monumental. Yale scored three more times. Babb, O’Connell, Black and freshman Mallory Muse all put the ball in the net.

“They’re so good at sharing the ball,” said Perkins. “We don’t have anyone who is selfish. They care about each other. It’s a really impressive group.” <

Friday, May 14, 2021

Windham's outdoor track’s intensity essential in win over Portland

Windham sophomore Connor Langstaff competes
in the triple jump during a prep track meet against
Portland High School at Fitzpatrick Stadium
in Portland on May 7. PHOTO BY
By Matt Pascarella

In the second meet of the season, Windham teams have already progressed quite a bit and came in first in almost every event during their meet against Portland at Fitzpatrick Stadium in Portland on Friday, May 7. The girls beat Portland 106-42 and the boys got a 103-38 win.

Windham junior Monica Agneta placed first in the 200-meter dash with a time of 28.40 seconds; she also placed second in the 100 with a time of 13.60.

In the 300-meter hurdles, Windham sophomore Scarlette Sawyer finished first with a time of 55.98. Windham senior Annamaria Condon finished second with a time of 1:06.94 minutes.

Junior Estella Inman placed first in the javelin throw with a distance of 70-09.

In the pole vault, senior Diane Ingalls placed first for Windham with a height of 6-06.00. Ingalls also placed first in the 800 with a time of 2:46.55.

In the high jump Condon got very excited about her first place finish with a height of 4-08.00.

“It just feels like a great accomplishment for me today (on the high jump) because I never thought I’d be able to reach that height,” said Condon.   

Windham girls’ coach Jeff Riddle said there is progression all over the place for the girls. It’s earned from all their hard work and dedication during training. Their improvements continue to show each week.

Senior Ethan Wert placed first for Windham in the 100 with a time of 11.42, the 200 with a time of 23.42 and the discus throw with a distance of 119-01 feet.

Windham junior Matthew Fox came in first with a height of 6-02.00 in the high jump.

Sophomore Connor Langstaff  of Windham came in first in the triple jump with a distance of 39-05.50.

Windham boys’ coach Paula Pock said she was encouraged to see four athletes automatically qualify for the state meet. She thought overall it was a good meet. 

 Senior Tristan Candelmo came in third for Windham in the 1600 with a time of 5:22.00.  

“Portland ... gave us a run for our money. They have a lot of strong distance people,” said Candelmo. He went on to say that Windham is getting up there with their four-way teams and that their distance people are dropping times and all around he thought Windham did great.<

Huge fifth inning hands CR Tandberg a 10-run Little League win

Fifth grader Mason Rulman of CR Tandberg bats
during a Windham Little League game against
Westbrook 2 played at Ciccarone Field at
Lowell Farm in Windham on Monday, May 10.
CR Tandberg defeated Westbrook 2, 11-1.
By Matt Pascarella

Windham Little League’s majors division squad CR Tandberg flexed some muscle and racked up a 10-run victory over visiting Westbrook 2 at Ciccarone Field at Lowell Farm in Windham on Monday, May 10.

The teams were tied for the first four innings, and in the fifth inning CR Tandberg kept the bats swinging and the hits coming to beat Westbrook 2, 11-1.

In the top of the first inning, CR Tandberg fourth grader Joey Small made two stellar catches to get Westbrook’s first two outs of the game. Fifth grader Zach Gaudet did a great job on the mound for CR Tandberg for over three innings.

In the third inning, Westbrook scored. In the bottom of the fourth inning, fifth grader Boston Krainis singled, fifth graders Aiden Rinaldi and Mason Rulman each singled. Krainis made it home to tie the game at one.

CR Tandberg’s pitching and defense made it really hard for Westbrook to make it around the diamond.

In the bottom of the fifth inning, it was a slugfest for CR Tandberg. After Small walked, sixth grader Matt Cole singled. Sixth grader Blake Webster walked and now the bases are loaded. Small stole home. Krainis walked and a runner came in, 3-1 CR Tandberg. Gaudet crushed the ball way into the outfield for a double and drove in two runs.

“I really like that I hit a double (that far),” said Gaudet. “It was a good feeling, when I first hit it; it was a pretty nice double. It would have bounced and hit the warning track probably.”

After Rinaldi walked, the bases are loaded again. Rulman sent the ball into the outfield and drove in two more runs. Sixth grader Gage Chicoine got on base. Fifth grader Lincoln Rulman singled and drove in two runs. Cole singled and drove in two runs and CR Tandberg got the win.

“The kids are really coming together well as a team,” said coach Tim Gaudet. “It’s a new team so it’s taken them a few games to come together; I think once they find that out they’re really going to play hard. We have a really good set of kids here ... they came together in the fifth inning and played well.” <

Friday, May 7, 2021

Windham boys’ lacrosse falls in hard-fought match to Scarborough

Windham senior Hunter Vail charges past a
defender during Windham's boys' lacrosse
game against Scarborough on Saturday, May 1.
By Matt Pascarella

On a windy, sunny afternoon, the Windham High School boys’ lacrosse team faced off against Scarborough, at home, Saturday, May 1 and the Eagles fought hard against the Red Storm, giving their all, but lost, 12-6.

The Eagles came out with intensity and showed Scarborough they could compete. Scarborough scored early on. A short time later, Windham answered when senior Connor Cummings put the Eagles on the scoreboard.

Windham kept up their aggressiveness in the first half and matched Scarborough almost goal-for-goal. Cummings scored again and Windham was close to catching Scarborough with the Red Storm ahead 3-2.

Junior William Woolston put one in the net for Windham. Senior Derek Palow also scored for the Eagles. Windham pressured the entire half. Before the end of the first half, Woolston got one between the bars; his third goal, to bring the Eagles right behind Scarborough, 6-7.

Woolston said he thought they played well; that they were a little flat-footed in the second half. He said they just need to clean off the little mistakes and play hard as a team.

In the second half, Windham’s intensity remained strong. The Eagles had solid defense as Scarborough scored less goals in the second half than in the first. Scarborough scored a couple goals early. The Eagles fought and worked hard to put the ball between the posts, with several nice attempts, but nothing got by in the half.

“They’re working their tails off and they do every single time they come out here,” said Windham coach Peter Small. “A lot of unfortunate errors, but not for want of working hard. We have to have patience and turn around and make sure we play our game.” <

Windham girls’ tennis team controls court against Deering

By Matt Pascarella

Girls’ tennis dominated the court on Tuesday, May 4 in their home game against Deering as both Windham’s singles and doubles players got big wins in their matches to earn a 4-1 win over the Lady Rams and put the Lady Eagles season record at 3-2.

Windham senior Rebecca Hamel hits the ball back
over the net in her singles tennis match against
Deering at Windham High on Tuesday.  
Each individual match is best of three games and the entire competition is best of five of all the matches played.

The Lady Eagles had focus, were quick on their feet and had looks of determination on their faces.

“I think today went really well for all of us,” said Windham senior Chloe McVetty. “I think ... our girls are just really strong this year; we’ve been practicing really hard and it’s paying off for us. We’re super happy to get to be on the court and to get to have our parents out (as spectators) is amazing.”

In the singles matches, Windham senior Rebecca Hamel defeated Deering 6-1 and 6-3. Windham sophomore Grace Paiement lost 6-4 and 6-1; Windham freshman Alyssa Conley won 6-0 and 6-0.

In the doubles matches Windham seniors McVetty and Nicole Snow won 6-0 and 6-0. Windham senior Gianna Stevens and Windham junior Felicie LePoutre won their matches 6-0 and 6-1.

“After the first practice, the first day, I was amazed by how quickly they progressed and every day (this team) is getting stronger and stronger,” said Windham coach Katy Dresnok.

According to Dresnok, Windham played solid matches against Deering.

“The singles one and two were nicely matched up and competitive and the doubles teams are working nicely together and getting into their groove as the season progresses,” she said. <

Communication, teamwork produce Windham Rental softball win

Sixth-grader Evelyn Anderson bats during Windham Rental's
Little League softball game against Yarmouth on Monday,
May 3. Windham Rental recorded a 14-5 win.
By Matt Pascarella

Windham Little League’s softball team, Windham Rental, traveled to the  Yarmouth Little League Complex and took the field against Yarmouth Little League softball on Monday, May 3.  Windham played as a cohesive unit, earning a 14-5 win over Yarmouth.

Sixth-grader Kaylee Napolitano got on base in the first inning. Then seventh- graders Addison Caiazzo and Lacie Higgins walked. Napolitano scored and Caiazzo scored. Fifth-grader Eliana Kostopoulos walked and then scored, making it, 4-0, Windham Rental.

Windham Rental’s defense and pitching prevented Yarmouth from scoring until the fourth inning.

In the second inning, seventh-graders Belle Pinto and Ashley Cloutier walked. Sixth-grader Jaylee Estabrook got a base hit and Pinto scored. Sixth-grader Jaden Kennedy and fifth-grader Joey Morin both walked, and the bases were loaded. Napolitano is hit by a pitch and a run comes in. Kennedy scored. After Caiazzo walked the bases were loaded again. After a walk, Morin scored. Windham Rental was up 8-0.

Kostopoulos sent the ball way into the outfield at the top of the third and then made it to third for the triple. Soon after, Kostopoulos crossed home plate. Evelyn Anderson got a base hit and then stole home. There was a walk and Windham Rental scored again making it 11-0.

Windham’s Kostopoulos said it felt good to hit her triple and she also said they played really well as a team because they communicated.

Yarmouth scored a run in the fourth inning. Then knocked in four more runs before the end of the game.

Estabrook said she thought the team did well, 10 out of 10. She thought they did so because they worked together on the field.

“The girls are doing really well,” said Windham Rental coach Stephen Napolitano. “The key is that they all want to become better individually and they all just get along.”

He said that good pitching and the fact that the girls care about how well they do helped them achieve this win. <