Thursday, June 20, 2013
By Matt DiFilippo firstname.lastname@example.org
The Western C girls basketball tournament looks like an interesting one. When you combine the records of No. 1 Boothbay, No. 2 Madison and No. 4 Waynflete, they've lost a total of two games to Class C schools.
Waynflete, which faces Dirigo at 7 p.m. Tuesday at the Augusta Civic Center, is undefeated against Class C opponents. The Flyers' three losses are all to Western B schools, including a five-point defeat to No. 1 Lake Region.
Waynflete is almost assuredly the best shooting team in the bracket. In five games this month, the Flyers have hit a total of 44 3-pointers, and those are spread out among five or six players every game. The scary thing is, that's below the average of nine per game they hit in three games at the Augusta Civic Center last year. All five starters return from that group, led by Martha Veroneau, who scored an all-classes record of 47 points in a tournament game last winter. Veroneau is averaging 19.8 points and 5.3 steals per game this season.
So Waynflete is pretty good, but so are a few other teams in the tournament. No. 1 Boothbay is 18-2, and the Seahawks take on No. 8 St. Dominic at 8:30 tonight. They met once this season, with Boothbay winning 51-36 in Auburn.
Today's first game pits No. 3 Old Orchard Beach against No. 6 Monmouth. The teams did not meet this season and had no common opponents until Monmouth defeated Kents Hill by 10 in the preliminary round. OOB beat Kents Hill twice, by a total of 11 points.
"I think we're pretty darn even teams, really," Monmouth coach Scott Wing said.
Wing said OOB is guard-oriented, with an aggressive style and a preference for long-range shooting. Monmouth has a solid do-everything player in 5-foot-6 forward Kylie Kemp. None of the Monmouth players have played at the Civic Center, so Wing's message to them is to -- as much as they can -- play it like it's any other game.
"(I said) enjoy themselves and have a good time," Wing said. "The other team has to play in the building, too. Don't think about it more than you have to."
At 4 p.m., No. 2 Madison plays No. 7 Mt. Abram. Madison can score outside with Sam Bruce or inside with Bronte Elias, and defeated Mt. Abram twice during the regular season.
"We have to control the basketball," Madison coach Al Veneziano said. "We have to make sure we get good shots up. We want to move the basketball. We make them move, we can get some open shots out of it."
Mt. Abram has won four straight and coach Doug Lisherness said the Roadrunners have improved their shooting percentage and cut their turnovers in half during the winning streak. Tori Beane, Annie Dexter, Mikayla Luce and Miranda Smith are all capable scorers.
"We have to come out aggressive," Lisherness said. "I've gone down there many years when we've packed up our things and gone home because we were not the aggressor. To me, it's just a big key for this team that we come out with all kinds of intensity."
Matt DiFilippo -- 861-9243