Connor Coffin and his Scarborough boys’ cross country teammates won the Class A state title last fall and have a great chance to repeat this season. File photos. More photos below.

FOOTBALL

Coach: Lance Johnson (10th year, 59-31 overall record, one state championship)

2018 record: 7-2 (Lost, 53-21, to eventual state champion Thornton Academy in Class A South Final)

Top returning players: Zach Alofs (Senior), Chase Cleary (Senior), Sal DeBenedetto (Senior), Jarett Flaker (Senior), Nate Mars (Senior), Max Pilspanen (Senior), Thomas Galeckas (Junior)

Senior Chase Cleary returns at quarterback for a Scarborough football team that should be one of the best in the state.

Pivotal games: Sept. 6 PORTLAND, Sept. 13 @ Bonny Eagle, Oct. 11 @ Sanford, Nov. 1 THORNTON ACADEMY

Coach’s comment: “We’ve got a good group back. Some of the best athletes in the state. We do have some work to do up front. We need to develop there. It will be a fun league this year. It should be more competitive. We know we’ll be battling with Bonny Eagle and TA. Our expectations are very high again. We’ll be very good. Teams can’t focus on taking away one player. We’ll be spreading the ball around.”

The Forecaster’s forecast: Ultimately, Scarborough was the second-best team in Class A a year ago, but all that got the Red Storm was a regional runner-up trophy. This fall, Scarborough aims to get back to its 2017 championship level and there’s reasons to believe that the Red Storm can do so.

Senior Jarett Flaker has no peer when it comes to breakaway speed and he figures to leave several tacklers in his wake in the weeks to come.

Everyone knows that Flaker has no rival when it comes to breakaway speed and Scarborough will use the track standout as a runner, receiver and kick returner. Flaker made the Class A South first-team a year ago and will put up some huge numbers in the weeks to come. Defenses can only focus on him so much, however, as Cleary has emerged as an excellent quarterback, one good enough to be named an all-star in his first year as a starter in 2018. He can throw passes all over the field and is a strong runner as well. Alofs and Galeckas will each get an opportunity to run with the ball and DeBenedetto and sophomore Jaden Flaker are other receiving threats. The line is anchored by all-stars Mars and Pilspinen, along with junior Cory Baker. Junior Collin Fossett, a soccer player by trade, will do the placekicking and sophomore Sam Rumelhart will kickoff.

Scarborough’s defense has the potential to be stifling. On the line, good luck running against Mars, Pilspinen and junior nose tackle Rylen Schenk. DeBenedetto and Galeckas (an all-star last year) lead the linebacking corps. In the secondary, Alofs (an all-star in 2018), Jaden Flaker and Jarret Flaker will limit the opposition’s passing attack.

The Red Storm are in a three-horse race atop the new-look eight-team Class A division. Scarborough goes to Bonny Eagle in week two and closes at home with Thornton Academy. Those two games will go a long way toward determining playoff positioning. The Red Storm can play with and beat anyone at the skill positions. If they get up to speed in the trenches, another memorable campaign could await.

BOYS’ SOCCER

Coach: Mark Diaz (21st year, 265-53-17 overall record, six state championships)

2018 record: 10-5-1 (Lost, 1-0, in OT, to Gorham in Class A South quarterfinals)

Top returning players: Tommy Stratis (Senior), Zach Chaisson (Junior), Ryan Stimson (Junior)

Pivotal games: Sept. 6 @ Deering, Sept. 21 @ South Portland, Sept. 24 @ Portland, Oct. 15 @ Falmouth, Oct. 17 GORHAM

Coach’s comment: “It’s a solid group so far with great energy. They’re working hard. We lost a lot. We only have one starter back. We’ll be rotating 15-18 guys. We’ll try to get better during the season. We need to get in a better playoff position this year.”

The Forecaster’s forecast: Scarborough wasn’t its usual dominant self last fall, but at the end of the season, the Red Storm were as dangerous as anyone, as Gorham found out. This year, Scarborough looks to be strong throughout and to go on a longer playoff run.

Stratis has experience as a defender. He’ll be joined by seniors Jacob Haggerty and Nolan Matthews to help new junior goalie Alex Bachmann get comfortable. In the midfield, Chaisson and Stimson return. Juniors Owen Leadley and Sam Sandler, along with sophomore Nate Needle, are also in the mix at that position. Up top, senior Ben Hatch, juniors Jared Glidden and Peter O’Brien, sophomores Nick Conley and Thomas Donahue and freshman Zander Haskell will all look to score.

The Red Storm have their share of question marks, but this group is just itching for an opportunity to prove itself. The league is deep and balanced, but Scarborough could wind up as good as anyone when all is said and done.

GIRLS’ SOCCER

Coach: Mike Farley (15th year, 190-28-15 overall record, two state championships)

2018 record: 17-1 (Lost, 1-0, to Camden Hills in Class A state final)

Top returning players: Madison Blanche (Senior), Sarah Callahan (Senior), Emily Johnson (Senior), Madison Marinko (Senior), Ashley Sabatino (Senior), Nikki Young (Senior), Lily Davis (Junior), Grace Pettingill (Junior)

Senior Ashley Sabatino and her Scarborough girls’ soccer teammates will continue their pursuit an elusive state title this fall.

Pivotal games: Oct. 4 NOBLE, Oct. 15 FALMOUTH, Oct. 18 @ Gorham, Oct. 22 @ Cheverus

Coach’s comment: “We lost five starting players to graduation and those players were big parts of our team. Over a third of our goals from last year and some key defensive players that were instrumental to our success over the last couple years are gone off to college. We’ll most likely have some growing pains in the beginning of the season, as we sort things out in the back and try to find roles and an identity as a team defensively. Our group of attacking players has tons of potential, but we’ll have to see how things come together. We have a really good mix of experienced players along with some younger players that will push for playing time. Our goal is to quickly get up to speed on what we are trying to do as a team and have the girls embrace the new roles and responsibilities we lay out for them. We need to find our defensive identity which could take some time and we are going to look to push our attack from the back this season. Lastly, we want to help our very talented group of attacking players find a good rhythm and help them reach their full potential. By the end of the year, hopefully we’ll have built a level of consistency on both ends of the field making us tough to deal with. I think (Class A) South is wide open this year and we know that our opponents will give us their best games, so we’ll have to embrace that pressure and rise to the challenge.”

The Forecaster’s forecast: Scarborough handled every foe a year ago until running into repeat champion Camden Hills in the state final and losing by a goal to the Windjammers for the second consecutive season. While the Red Storm have lost some firepower, there’s always plenty in reserve and this group will make a run at another regional (and perhaps state) title before all is said and done.

Scarborough will be tough to defend as it features several girls who can put the ball in the net. Sabatino was a first-team SMAA all-star in 2018 after scoring nine goals and adding 10 assists. As an attacking midfielder, she can create offense, strike quickly and has a deadly finish. Callahan (six goals last year), Pettingill (six goals and five assists last season), Johnson (five goals, five assists in 2018), sophomore Caitlin Noiles and promising freshman Ali Mokriski (who Farley says could be his first freshman field player in his 15 years at Scarborough) will all be heard from offensively as well. In the back, Blanche, Davis and Marinko are a formidable unit in front of Young (an honorable mention all-star last year after posting nine shutouts and making a series of dazzling saves in the state final), who returns in goal. Senior Katrina Fowler will also see time between the pipes.

Scarborough surrendered all of seven goals in 18 games in 2018 and the defense figures to be stingy again. Replacing the offensive production of reigning Fall Female Athlete of the Year Molly Murnane will be a challenge, but the Red Storm should get enough production from myriad sources to fill the void. The league is once again strong, but Scarborough doesn’t face rival Windham or up-and-coming Bonny Eagle in the regular season. In fact, the Red Storm’s early schedule is favorable, which should allow the team to get up to speed before its biggest games. Ultimately, Scarborough will be judged on what it does in late October and into November and based on its pedigree and the talent on this roster, a return to the big stage wouldn’t surprise anyone. Nor would an elusive victory in that game.

FIELD HOCKEY

Coach: Kerry Mariello (18th year, 213-56-7 overall record, two state championships)

2018 record: 12-3-1 (Lost, 5-0, to Westbrook in Class A South semifinals)

Top returning players: Julia Booth-Howe (Senior), Hannah Dobecki (Senior), Abby Roy (Senior), Carrie Timpson (Senior), Bella Turner (Junior)

Senior Carrie Timpson was an all-star in 2018 and will pace Scarborough’s run at a field hockey crown this season.

Pivotal games: Sept. 4 @ Falmouth, Sept. 12 BIDDEFORD, Sept. 18 CHEVERUS, Sept. 30 @ Westbrook, Oct. 10 @ Gorham

Coach’s comment: “We have great numbers including a lot of freshmen. That’s always encouraging. We lost seven from last year, but we have 10 seniors. We have a strong core. It’s just a matter of developing our youngsters. The league will be a dogfight. There will be no easy games. That’s great, but scary at the same time. We hope for another deep run.”

The Forecaster’s forecast: Scarborough reached the semifinal round for the seventh straight season in 2018, but the Red Storm’s goals are always loftier. This year’s team will again be on the short list of top squads in Class A South.

Timpson was a first-team league all-star last season and she returns to pace the offense. Booth-Howe and Turner could also be top scorers. Dobecki, another returning all-star, is a top defender, along with sophomore Lilly Finley. Roy returns in goal.

If other girls can step up and fill holes, Scarborough won’t have any weaknesses. How quickly this squad comes together will determine just how tough the Red Storm will be by October, when they’re usually primed for a title run. This group has what it takes to carry on the program’s legacy.

VOLLEYBALL

Coach: Kim Stoddard (second year)

2018 results: 13-3 (Lost, 3-1, to Gorham in Class A state semifinals)

Top returning players: Anna Gardner (Senior), Mayne Gwyer (Junior), Shaelyn Thornton (Junior), Gwen Dorsey (Sophomore)

Sophomore Gwen Dorsey is coming off a strong debut season for Scarborough’s volleyball team.

Pivotal matches: Sept. 17 @ Gorham, Sept. 24 @ Cape Elizabeth, Oct. 3 FALMOUTH, Oct. 5 @ Yarmouth, Oct. 10 BIDDEFORD, Oct. 15 @ South Portland

Coach’s comment: “We have a lot of players returning this year and a relatively young team. I expect we’ll be competitive with every team we play. We’ll have to work hard on  mixing up the ways to score points. I have a strong group of hitters who keep defenses off-balance. We’ve discussed as a team taking chances hitting and making plays happen, especially early in the season. If we stay aggressive, I know we’ll be successful. This team has a ton of potential and they’re ready to work hard to continue playing deep in October.”

The Forecaster’s forecast: Scarborough wasn’t able to defend its championship a year ago, but still produced a solid season. A season the Red Storm should build on this fall as they’re once again a top threat in Class A.

Thornton made the all-state first-team in 2018. She’s an outside hitter who led Scarborough last fall with 86 kills and 118 digs. She’ll be a force to reckoned with at the net. Gardner had 68 kills and a team-high dozen blocks as a middle hitter last season. Look for her to put up big numbers again. Dorsey started as a freshman and is back to build on her 75 kills, 11 blocks performance. Gwyer is the setter and she’s one of the best around (all-star honorable mention in 2018). Gwyer led the team last year with 38 aces and 230 assists. Other players to watch include senior captain and outside hitter Maya Brooks, who will play a much bigger role this autumn, and sophomore middle hitter Maddie Strouse, who is a top blocker.

Falmouth is projected as a favorite to repeat and several other strong teams reside in Class A, but Scarborough has what it takes to go toe-to-toe with all of them. Look for this group to again post a strong record and be at its best when the playoffs roll around. If there’s a team capable of denying Falmouth a repeat, it might just be the program that won it all two years ago.

CROSS COUNTRY

Coaches:
(Boys): Jim Harmon (22nd year, 10 state championships)
(Girls): Ron Kelly (47th year, five state championships)

2018 results:
(Boys) Class A state champions
(Girls) DNQ for Class A state meet (11th @ regionals)

Top returners:
(Boys) Justin Castaldo (Senior), Connor Coffin (Senior), Tristram Coffin (Senior), Erik LoSacco (Junior), Zach Barry (Sophomore)
(Girls) Isabella Cook (Senior), Ryanne Cox (Senior), Olivia Desjardins (Senior), Lena Wood (Junior), Kayla Werner (Sophomore)

Coach Harmon’s comment: “This is possibly the most talented team I’ve coached in my 22 years at Scarborough, so if we can stay healthy and our training progresses, we should be a serious contender for the state title and hope to do well at New Englands.”

Coach Kelly’s comment: “Our goal is to get back to the state meet. Our top three are very good. We need to develop number four and five runners.”

The Forecaster’s forecast: Another triumphant year appears in store for Scarborough’s cross country program.

The boys are coming off yet another title and while some top line talent graduated, enough remains to have Harmon optimistic that this could be his best team of all. Tristram Coffin came in fourth a year ago and will lead the way, along with Connor Coffin (11th), Barry (15th) and LoSacco (17th). Castaldo is a senior leader and junior Benjamin Cassellius, along with sophomores Bryce Beeler, Connor L’Heureux and Will Pulvino and freshmen Adam Bendetson and Nate Driscoll, round out a strong group. Scarborough will be pushed by Falmouth and others, but this group knows how to be at its best for the biggest meets and to do what it takes to win the hardware. If the Red Storm can avoid the injury bug, yet another championship could be the end result.

On the girls’ side, after failing to qualify for states last year for the second year in a row, Scarborough is ready to end that drought this time around. The Red Storm return Werner, who qualified for states as an individual last fall (coming in 17th). Also returning are Desjardins (55th at the regional meet), Wood (59th), Cook (72nd) and Cox. Senior Vanesa Dirisi and sophomore Megan Randall also will be key contributors. While Scarborough might not be at the level of favorites like defending champion Bonny Eagle and Falmouth, it will return to form. The Red Storm should get back to states and make some noise once they get there.

GOLF

Coach: Mike Murphy (31st year, two state championships)

2018 results: 10-0 (2nd @ Class A state match)

Top returners: Cam Chamberlain (Senior), Peter Malia (Junior), Alden Griffiths (Sophomore)

Coach’s comment: “This isn’t the same team we’ve had for several years. We’ve had a solid 1-2 punch for almost a decade. Other kids will have to move up and see what they can do. Several kids who didn’t get to play last year because of our depth will have a chance to shine. Our goal is always to get to states. We just hope to get better every day.”

The Forecaster’s forecast: Scarborough had another terrific season a year ago, but graduation hit hard, taking all-stars Anthony Burnham and Ethan Mason, along with Callaghan Berry and Jack Clark.

The Red Storm still have some talent, however, as Malia (who shot an 83 at last year’s team state match and a 79 at the individual state match) and Griffiths (84 at team states) return. Griffiths made the SMAA all-star team in 2018. Chamberlain also turned heads last fall, shooting an 82 at the individual state match. That will be the core of this year’s squad. Junior John Webber and freshmen Asa Buteau and T.J. Liponis will step in and fill roles.

Scarborough is in a tough division and going undefeated isn’t on the radar. Being the best individuals and team come October is the goal and you can rest assured that the Red Storm will accomplish something special in the postseason.

Sports Editor Michael Hoffer can be reached at [email protected]. Follow him on Twitter: @foresports.


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