Tuesday, March 11, 2014
By Paul Betit email@example.com
For all the success Falmouth High's sports programs have had in recent years -- with multiple state championships in almost every varsity boys' sport -- there's been a notable omission from the school's trophy collection: boys' hockey.
The celebration was a long time coming for the Falmouth’s boys’ hockey team, which claimed its first state championship Saturday night with a 4-0 victory over Lewiston in the Class A final at the Colisee in Lewiston.
Photos by Gordon Chibroski/Staff Photographer
There were plenty of smiles to go around after Greely made it back-to-back Class B state championships and three in five years, defeating Messalonskee in the final for the second straight season, 3-0.
RECENT HOCKEY CHAMPIONS
2012: Thornton Academy
2011: Thornton Academy
Saturday night, Falmouth finally added a boys' hockey championship, thanks to a convincing 4-0 win against perennial contender Lewiston in the Class A final at the Androscoggin Bank Colisee.
"The emotion of this is unbelievable," Falmouth defenseman Jack Pike said. "Falmouth has always had a history of great hockey teams. We've never been able to make it here and win. To be the first team to do it I can't put words to it."
Deron Barton, in his second year as Falmouth coach, said the Yachtsmen took a basic approach to the most successful hockey season in school history, after many years of playoff frustration.
"We've had our heads down and have been working so hard for this goal for the entire season," said Barton. "It was a long road, full of ups and downs."
Even after the players had claimed their individual awards and the championship plaque, Barton still had a difficult time believing Falmouth's quest for a hockey title had been completed.
"I feel like we've got to go back to practice tomorrow and get ready for the next day," he said. "That's just how hard we've been working."
Barton said the team's solid work ethic was the main reason the Yachtsmen finally won a state championship.
"Same thing we've done all year," he said. "Stayed to our systems. Keep working hard. Keep working smart. Get the puck deep. And good things were going to happen. And take away their scoring opportunities as often as we can."
Said Lewiston Coach Jamie Belleau: "We ran into a team that has been groomed for the last three or four years. They're very good."
AFTER GREELY claimed its second consecutive Class B boys' hockey championship Saturday afternoon, Ted Hart, the Rangers' leading scorer, said he really had something to brag about now when he gets together with his two older brothers, Kevin and Brian.
"I've got two state championships, and they've gone one," he said.
Kevin and Brian Hart helped Greely win its first state title in 2009.
Kevin Hart is now a junior defenseman at Providence College, which starts a best-of-three Hockey East tournament quarterfinal series Friday night against New Hampshire.
Brian Hart, selected by the Tampa Bay Lightning in the second round of last year's NHL draft, is a freshman forward at Harvard. The Crimson played at Dartmouth in the final game of a best-of-three ECAC first-round series Sunday night.
With only four seniors on its roster, Greely should be well positioned to make a run at a third straight title next winter. Hart, though, might not be back for his senior year. The state's leading scorer with 35 goals this season, Hart learned Saturday morning that he has been accepted at Phillips Exeter Academy. Both of his older brothers went to the New Hampshire prep school before starting college.
"I really haven't decided if I'm going or not," he said. "We'll sit around and talk about it for a while, but right now my options are open."
-- Staff Writer Kevin Thomas contributed to this report.
Paul Betit can be contacted at 791-6424 or at:
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Greely goalie Kyle Kramlich makes one of his 18 saves on the way to a shutout against a Messalonskee team that was averaging six goals per game.
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Doris Samaras, mother of Falmouth senior forward Kris Samaras, cheers on the Yachtsmen during Saturday’s Class A state championship game.