(Ed. Note: The basketball season was recapped last week)

Cheverus’ Quinton Hastings won the 50 and 100 freestyle races at last month’s Class A state meet. File photos

The 2019-20 winter sports season saw local athletes and teams once again turn heads as they fought their way to the top of the heap.

In the pool, another season brought another Cheverus boys’ Class A state title, the Stags’ eighth in succession. This time around, Cheverus was 31 points better than runner-up Bangor, thanks to five individual championships (see below).

Portland finished 15th and Deering was 18th.

In the Class A girls’ meet, won by Kennebunk, Cheverus placed seventh, Deering wound up in a tie for 20th and Portland was 22nd.

In Class B, Waynflete’s boys were 12th and the girls came in 16th.

Cheverus standout Victoria Bossong won three more individual state titles this winter. 

Cheverus also excelled on the track, with one athlete again leaving everyone in her wake.

The Stags’ girls’ squad wasn’t able to repeat as Class A champion, coming in third behind Bangor and Gorham, but Victoria Bossong won individual crowns in the 55, 200 and 400 (teammate Emma Gallant was runner-up in the 200 and 400), setting new records in the 55 and 400.

Deering placed 18th.

In the boys’ meet, won by Scarborough, Cheverus was fourth, thanks to multiple runner-up performances.

Portland finished in a tie for 19th place, while Deering was 21st.

Megan Cunningham and her Deering girls’ Nordic skiing teammates enjoyed another strong season.  

The snow was kind to city skiers.

Ben Adey was part of a Falmouth/Waynflete boys’ Alpine squad which won the Class A state title.

Cheverus came in 14th.

The Cheverus girls were 15th.

In Class A Nordic competition, Portland came in second to Falmouth and produced state champion Liam Niles, in the classic. Niles was also second in the freestyle.

Deering placed ninth as a team and featured Will Jordan, who came in second in the classic.

Cheverus was 12th.

In girls’ Nordic action in Class A, Deering was second to Mt. Blue.

Portland placed third.

Cheverus was ninth.

In Class C, Waynflete’s girls finished second in the Nordic standings to Fort Kent.

Waynflete’s boys placed fifth.

Owen Anderson of the South Portland/Waynflete/Freeport co-op boys’ hockey team was part of a squad which reached the Class A Final Four 

On the ice, the Cheverus boys enjoyed a terrific regular season, but the Stags were upset by Cape Elizabeth in the Class B semifinals.

The Portland/Deering co-op team defeated Lake Region in a Class A state preliminary round game, but lost to Scarborough in the quarterfinals.

That left the South Portland/Waynflete/Freeport co-op squad, which enjoyed the best season in program history, beating Thornton Academy in the Class A state quarterfinals before losing to eventual state champion Lewiston, in the semifinals.

“We’d never been this far before and it’s pretty cool,” said South Portland/Freeport/Waynflete coach Joe Robinson. “I feel bad for the seniors, but they accomplished a lot and they should be proud.”

Cheverus’ girls’ team wasn’t able to repeat as state champion, losing to the Cape Elizabeth/Waynflete/South Portland co-op squad in the South Region semifinals.

The Capers went on to upset Scarborough in the regional final, then took undefeated Lewiston to overtime in the state game before their finest-ever season came to a close with a 1-0 setback.

Portland/Deering was upset by York in its quarterfinal.

Wrestling saw Cheverus come in ninth at the Class A state meet.

The Portland/South Portland co-op squad finished 19th.

Deering placed 20th.

In the girls’ state meet, Cheverus’ Emily Wiggin finished as a runner-up.

Before we take a deep breath and move on to spring sports, here’s one last look at the best of the best this winter:

State champions

Team
Cheverus Stags boys’ swimming, Class A

Individual

Swimming
Quinton Hastings, Cheverus, Class A boys’ 50 freestyle
Quinton Hastings, Cheverus, Class A boys’ 100 freestyle
Jack Martin, Cheverus, Class A boys’ 200 individual medley
Brim Peabody, Cheverus, Class A boys’ 500 freestyle
Brim Peabody, Cheverus, Class A boys’ 100 breaststroke

Indoor track
Victoria Bossong, Cheverus, Class A girls’ 55
Victoria Bossong, Cheverus, Class A girls’ 200
Victoria Bossong, Cheverus, Class A girls’ 400

Skiing
Liam Niles, Portland, Class A boys’ Nordic classic

Michael’s top five stories/moments

5) Cheverus hockey thrives

Prior to the winter season, it was uncertain whether or not Cheverus would even be able to field boys’ and girls’ hockey teams, but the Stags put the pieces in place, then went out and had another strong season. Cheverus’ girls’ squad reached the South Region semifinals and the boys made it to the Class B South semifinals, as everyone involved with both teams made the most of their opportunity.

4) Waynflete co-op hockey teams enjoy deep runs

Waynflete only has a few kids who play ice hockey, but those Flyers helped their respective co-op teams to big things. The Cape Elizabeth/Waynflete/South Portland girls’ team enjoyed its best-ever season, making it all the way to the state championship for the first time, where it took undefeated Lewiston to overtime before falling by a goal. The South Portland/Waynflete/Freeport boys’ squad then enjoyed its best campaign to date, reaching the Class A state semifinals before also losing to Lewiston.

3) Nordic skiers keep impressing

The city of Portland once again produced some top-notch Nordic skiers this year. Portland’s Liam Niles won a championship in the Class A classic. Teammate Ben Horrisberger also had top-10 showings in both the classic and freestyle. Deering’s Will Jordan was second in the classic and seventh in the freestyle. On the girls’ side, Portland’s Lucy Medd and Annabelle Brooks, Deering’s Megan Cunningham and Cheverus’ Leska Whitmarsh also placed in the top-10. In Class C, Waynflete’s Clara Sandberg and Julia Werner placed in the top 10 on the girls’ side, while Nicholas Werner was third in both the classic and freestyle in the boys’ meet.

2) Excellence on the track 

Cheverus’ girls’ indoor track team didn’t bring home the hardware this season, but the Stags still featured three-time state champion and double-record setter Victoria Bossong, as well as runners-up Emma Gallant and Lauren Jordan. The Cheverus boys saw Frank Morang and Giovanni Fornaro place second.

1) Cheverus swimming makes it eight in a row

Eight apparently isn’t enough.

Because all Cheverus does is win no matter what.

“We wanted to end it with a bang,” Stags’ standout Quinton Hastings said. “Eight straight years. It’s pretty special.”

“It wasn’t easy, but we’ve got a bunch of talented, young kids,” said Cheverus coach Kevin Haley.

Another championship in 2021 is distinctly possible.

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

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