Tuesday February 14, 2012 | 09:58 PM

The Portland boys' basketball team strode into South Portland's gym early in the second quarter of the Riots' Western Class A preliminary game against Westbrook on Tuesday. The players walked past the entire South Portland student section and found some spots at the top of the bleachers, at the far end.

The Bulldogs were there to scout their opponent in Saturday's quarterfinals, and they had to recognize what they saw -- to a point. South Portland showed its usual interest in shooting 3-pointers during a 40-32 win over Westbrook. But the Riots handled pressure at the end of the game, something they didn't do in losing twice by four points to Portland during the regular season.

"A lot of it is just not giving up," South Portland's Logan Goddard said. "Our shots weren't going in, but we didn't care. We just keep trying."

South Portland Coach Phil Conley was well aware of the Bulldogs' presence. But he said the Riots won't dip into a bag of tricks Saturday or try anything too crazy. The Bulldogs are the No. 2 seed and South Portland is No. 7, but as Conley sees it, a South Portland win wouldn't be an upset at all.

"I think we'll throw a little wrinkle at them, but I think our guys are playing well," Conley said. "We've played Portland and I think both teams are looking forward to a rematch."

About this Blog

VarsityMaine The Portland Press Herald and Maine Sunday Telegram put a priority on high school sports coverage, and this blog is a place for all our reporters to put news and notes from around the state.

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About the Author

Maine High School Sports Bloggers

Tom Chard is a Portland native who has covered high school sports and golf for the Press Herald and Maine Sunday Telegram for 38 years. A three-sport athlete at Deering High, Tom's chief athletic pursuit is chasing the little white ball. He played in his 20th Maine Amateur Golf Championship in July.

Glenn Jordan came to Maine in 1994 to cover the nascent Portland Sea Dogs. After eight baseball seasons and three children – the last two within 18 minutes of each other – he became a part-time writer. Among the sports he covers are now are tennis, skiing, swimming and running. He has a degree in philosophy from Dartmouth, a decent forehand and a penchant for checkers.

Mike Lowe is a Massachusetts native who feels he's lived long enough in Maine (since 1982) to have roots here. He graduated from Boston University and has worked in New Hampshire and Maine, covering everything from the Little League World Series to the Olympics. When he has free time – Ha! – he likes to read, collect comic books and watch the grass grow from his hammock.

Previous entries

March 2013

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March 2012

February 2012

March 2011

February 2011

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