LISBON FIELD HOCKEY player Courtney Lawrence (3) and her Greyhound teammates compete Saturday in the Class C State Championship at Thomas College in Waterville on Saturday.

LISBON FIELD HOCKEY player Courtney Lawrence (3) and her Greyhound teammates compete Saturday in the Class C State Championship at Thomas College in Waterville on Saturday.


This is the time of the year that athletes, coaches and even sports writers cherish. Yes, it is busy, especially when area teams keep winning in the playoffs, setting up a busy few days trying to get to everything.

Beginning today and running into Saturday, with forecasters calling for the possibility, maybe, you never know, of the white stuff falling, cross country, field hockey, soccer and football will be contested throughout the state.



Today at Richmond, the Bobcat girls look to get started on the right foot with a Western Maine Class D semifinal matchup with rival Rangeley, which downed Buckfield 2-0 on Wednesday in a quarterfinal. The Bobcats had little difficulty with the Lakers this season, rolling to a 5-0 win on Sept. 16 and an 8-1 victory on Oct. 14. Rangeley is the No. 5 seed, with 14-0 Richmond once again leading the pack. Kick-off is slated for 2:30 p.m.

The Richmond boys are also in action today in semifinal action, with fourthseeded Greater Portland Christian coming to town fora3p.m.matchup.The Bobcats dispatched rival Greenville, 3-1, on Tuesday to improve to 15-0. The teams did not meet during the regular season.

Three area teams advanced to the football postseason this year, but only the Morse Shipbuilders will be in action (see B2) tonight. Sixth-seeded Morse visits No. 3 Falmouth tonight at 7 p.m., while Brunswick and Lisbon, the top seeds in Eastern B and Western D, respectively, have to wait a week.

Some might say a bye allows teams to heal up those wounds. For me, I would rather play and stay fresh. However, I’d also rather see the Maine Principals’ Association cut down on the number of teams making the football playoffs. It is ridiculous to have eight teams in a 10-team division make the postseason. That just leads to blowouts. Make it four across the board.

Saturday craziness

Saturday is filled with a plethora of playoff action, along with state championships in field hockey and cross country.

At Troy Howard Middle School in Belfast, cross country runners will look for state title glory. Dave DeLois has his Brunswick teams ready to go, with his girls finishing second in the Eastern B Regional last Saturday, led by Tessa Cassidy’s win.

“I see us in the top five,” said DeLois.

Mt. Ararat’s boys and girls will also compete in the Class A state meet. Katherine Leckbee (fourth at Regionals) and Matt Gott (ninth) are looking to challenge.

“Our goal is for all to improve on their times and have a few kids qualify for New Englands,” said Mt. Ararat coach Diane Fournier. “Matt has had a great season, and just keeps improving each week. Katherine can be in the top 15 this week, if not better.”

Class C boys run at 11 a.m., followed by Class C girls at 11:45 a.m. Merriconeag Waldorf School of Freeport took second in both the girls and boys Regional meets last week, while Lisbon runner Nicholas Harriman made the field off of his 20th-place finish last week at Twin Brook in Cumberland.

The Class A boys hit the course at 12:30 p.m., followed by the Class A girl at 1:15 p.m.

Class B features the Freeport boys and the Morse girls. The Falcon boys run at 2 p.m., with the Shipbuilder girls in action at 2:45 p.m. Also, Freeport’s Lily Johnston (17th at Regionals) will be in the girls field. Lisbon field hockey coach Julie Petrie will depart on her honeymoon on Nov. 8, heading to beautiful Cancun, Mexico. But first, she leads her Greyhounds into the Class C State Championship at Thomas College in Waterville on Saturday at 3 p.m.

Off of her team’s 2-1 double overtime win against Oak Hill on Thursday (see B1), Petrie believes her team, which won the Class C state title two seasons ago with a 3-1 win over Winthrop, has the experience to get it done.

“We have experienced seniors who were here when they were seniors,” said Petrie of her 15-2 squad that will take on 16-0-1 Winslow on Saturday. “We have nine seniors who are great at bringing the younger kids along. They get along and there is no drama. We are a family, and we are hoping that carries us on Saturday.”

In soccer action, the Brunswick boys, riding a 13- game unbeaten streak (11-0- 2) take on No. 3 Hampden Academy on Saturday at Peter Gardner Field. Game time is set for 11 a.m.

The Broncos handed the second-seeded Dragons one of their two losses, beginning the year with a comefrom behind 2-1 win back on Sept. 9. In the rematch up north, Brunswick gained a 2- 1 victory of its own.

The Brunswick girls are also in action. The thirdseeded Dragons (10-3-2) visit No. 2 Edward Little in Auburn at noon. The Red Eddies downed Brunswick 2- 1 Sept. 23, but the Dragons have not lost since, going 8-0- 1 including a 2-0 victory over No. 6 Messalonskee on Wednesday. EL downed rival Lewiston, 1-0, in overtime in its Eastern A quarterfinal.

And, Mt. Ararat hits the road for another two-hour trip, this time to Bangor on Saturday at 11 a.m. The Eagles (9-4-2), the No. 5 seed, slipped past Hampden Academy, 2-1, in the Eastern A quarters on Wednesday, and now faces top-seeded Bangor. The Rams edged Mt. Ararat, 2-1, on Sept. 25, and who can forget last year’s Eastern A Regional final when Bangor won in overtime, 2-1, over the Eagles?

Lastly, Bowdoin College is into playoff mode. The defending Division III national champion Polar Bear field hockey team claimed the New England Small College Athletic Conference’s top seed. Bowdoin is ranked No. 2 nationally and hosts No. 8 Hamilton on Saturday at 1 p.m. on Ryan Field. Another national title coming Bowdoin’s way this year? We will find out in a few short weeks.

Also, the Bowdoin women’s soccer team, the No. 2 seed in the NESCAC, entertains Tufts in a rematch of Wednesday’s conference final, won by the Polar Bears, 3-1. The game is set for a 12:30 p.m. start. And, the Bowdoin men are seeded sixth and visit thirdseeded Williams, with kickoff set for noon.

Bowdoin football hosts rival Bates at 12:30 p.m. The Bobcats defeated Colby College last week, so a Bates win gives the Bobcats the Colby-Bates-Bowdoin Trophy once again. But, a Polar Bears win and a victory at Colby next week in coach Dave Caputi’s final game would give the outgoing coach one last feel of the CBB prize.

Like I said, it is a busy, busy weekend. But, what fun it will be.

BOB CONN is The Times Record Sports Editor. He can be reached at [email protected]