The Portland Press Herald/Maine Sunday Telegram won 15 awards, including five first-place awards, in the 2011 New England Associated Press News Executives Association competition.

The Portland papers competed against regional newspapers such as the Boston Herald, the Providence Journal and the Hartford Courant in circulation-based categories. The contest covered the year from April 1, 2010, through March 31, 2011.

“We didn’t need to do as well as we did in the NEAPNEA awards to confirm that we have a great staff doing great work,” said Scott Wasser, vice president and executive editor. “But it’s always rewarding to have other people — particularly objective judges — tell you you’re doing a great job. I’m extremely proud of our award winners and their work. And I’m equally proud of the many great journalists we have who didn’t happen to win anything in this year’s contest.”

The Bangor Daily News took home eight awards.

Three of the Portland Press Herald/Maine Sunday Telegram winners — John Ewing, Sally Tyrrell and Brian Robitaille — also won NEAPNEA awards last year.

Here is a complete list of this year’s Portland winners:

First place, best headline: Sally Tyrrell, “Tempest in a D cup”

First place, sports action photo: John Ewing, “Goalie save”

First place, sports feature photo: Tim Greenway, “Swimming cheer”

First place, website special section: Suzi Piker, Trevor Maxwell and Greg Rec, for “Did this man kill Sarah Cherry?”

First place, website sports section: Suzi Piker and Bob Aube, for the 2011 high school basketball tournaments home page

Second place, portrait photo: John Patriquin, “Snow face”

Second place, sports page design: Jeff Hannon, “West, with barely a test”

Second place, business/consumer story: Jonathan Hemmerdinger, “Seeing red (tape)”

Second place, deadline sports story: Jenn Menendez, “An oh-no in Orono”

Second place, sports column: Steve Solloway, “You see the joy,” “They bought what he sold and got gold in return,” and “When life applies the worst hold”

Third place, feature photo: John Patriquin, “Rainbow fisherman”

Third place, general news photo: Gordon Chibroski, “First day of school”

Third place, photo story: Greg Rec, “Local Muslims celebrate Eid al-Fitr”

Third place, arts and entertainment story: Shannon Bryan, “Burlesque is really taking off”

Third place, Page 1 design: Brian Robitaille, “One small step”