After two years without, spring sports athletes and teams are relishing the opportunity to play in the postseason.

While outdoor track and field held its championship meets Saturday (see story), tennis, baseball, softball and lacrosse are in the midst of determining their best.

Here’s a look at where things stand with just days to go before tennis crowns its champions and less than two weeks remain until baseball, softball and lacrosse do the same:


Waynflete’s perennial champion boys’ tennis team was just two victories away from a 13th consecutive Class C state title at press time. The Flyers, ranked first in Class C South, swept No. 9 Dirigo (5-0) in the quarterfinal round, then eliminated No. 4 North Yarmouth Academy (5-0) in Saturday’s semifinal round. Next up for Waynflete is No. 2 Maranacook/Winthrop (12-0) in the regional final Wednesday in Lewiston. The teams didn’t meet this season.

Waynflete’s girls made it to the regional finals as well, with a little more difficulty. The Flyers, ranked third in Class C South, blanked No. 6 Boothbay (5-0) in the quarterfinals, then needed nearly four hours to outlast second-seeded Maranacook, 3-2, Friday in the semifinals. Courtney Ford’s victory at third singles was the difference.

“I am exhausted,” a visibly tired but beaming Ford said after finishing her 7-6 (6), 6-7 (4), 6-4 victory. “I’ve never had to go into three sets before. … (It’s a) huge relief. There was a ton of pressure, and then in one shot it was all just gone.”


Morgan Warner at first singles and Lucy Hart at second singles both won in straight sets for Waynflete’s other points.

“It was a lot of pressure,” Ford said. “After Lucy came through in second singles, I had to pick it up and do it for her.”

The Flyers advanced to take on top-ranked Hall-Dale (12-0) in the regional final Wednesday in Lewiston. The teams didn’t play this year.

The Class C state championships are Saturday at 12:30 p.m. in Lewiston.

All other local squads were eliminated.

Portland’s boys, ranked third in Class A South, blanked No. 6 Westbrook (5-0) in the quarterfinals, then lost, 3-0. at No. 2 Thornton Academy Saturday to wind up 12-2.


Cheverus, the No. 5 seed, defeated No. 12 Gorham, 4-1, in the preliminary round, then was eliminated, 3-2, by fourth-seeded Falmouth, the three-time reigning state champion, to finish 8-6.

Deering, ranked 11th, dropped a 3-2 decision to No. 6 Westbrook in the preliminary round to wind up 1-11.

In girls’ Class A South action, Cheverus, seeded sixth, blanked No. 11 South Portland (5-0) in the preliminary round, then was eliminated by third-ranked Kennebunk, 5-0, to finish 8-6.

Portland, ranked ninth, edged No. 8 Gorham, 3-2, in the preliminary round, then lost to top-seeded Falmouth, 4-1, in the quarterfinals to wind up 6-8.

Deering, ranked 12th, was ousted by fifth-seeded Scarborough, 5-0, in the preliminary round to finish the season 2-10.


Portland’s Grant Crosby hits a two-run triple during the Bulldogs’ 11-3 play-in victory over Deering Saturday. Michael Hoffer / The Forecaster

Ancient rivals Deering and Portland kicked off the baseball postseason in a Class A South play-in game Saturday at Hadlock Field.


The Rams, ranked 18th, and the Bulldogs, the No. 15 seed, met in the playoffs for the first time in six years and it would be Portland that prevailed.

In the bottom of the first, after an error kept the inning alive, Grant Crosby ripped a two-out, two-run triple off Deering pitcher Avery Lawrence for a 2-0 lead. Bulldogs pitcher Danny Tocci faced the minimum through three innings, but in the top of the fourth, the Rams responded, as Conner Coleman hit an RBI double and Ethan Berkowitz followed with a two-run single for a 3-2 advantage.

But Portland answered in the bottom half, tying the game on a fielder’s choice, then going up for good when Bennett Berg hit a sacrifice fly. The Bulldogs broke it open in the bottom of the fifth, scoring seven times. James Gignac singled in a run, an error scored another, Reegan Buck brought in a run with a bunt single, then Berg delivered the big blow, a two-run triple. Andrew Brewer plated another run with a single, then Crosby reached on an infield single, bringing in one more to cap the uprising.

Tocci slammed the door from there and Portland closed out its 11-3 victory, improving to 5-11 in the process.

“Everyone got up (in that fifth) inning and kept it going,” Berg said. “We all can hit.”

“One thing about a Bulldog team is we never quit,” Tocci said. “Even if we’re down 1-0 or 12-0, we give everything we got. We just wanted to take care of business. Deering’s our rival. We wanted to win and win big.”


“We got to win our last game at Hadlock Field under the lights,” added longtime Portland coach Mike Rutherford. “We were down and the kids responded.”

Portland advanced to take on No. 2 Scarborough (14-2) in the Class A South Round of 16 Tuesday. The Bulldogs lost at Scarborough, 10-1, back on April 27. The teams have played twice before in the playoffs with Portland winning both: 5-4 (in nine innings) in the 2008 Western A preliminary round and 5-4 in the 2013 Western A quarterfinals.

“If we come to play, we feel we’re as good as anybody,” Tocci said. “We’ll play our hearts out.”

“We just have to put the ball in play and play good defense,” Berg said.

“I’ve coached a long time and this has been one of my most fun years,” Rutherford added. “I haven’t had any issues at all. We’ve had 20 days off with COVID, but the kids have been great. They honestly believe they’ll show up Tuesday and beat Scarborough. That’s how Portland kids are. They really believe it. We’ll go out and play hard. We’ll throw a couple pitchers who are good one time around the order. We want to get up on them early and then the pressure’s on them.”

Deering wound up 2-13 with its loss to Portland, but made great progress over the course of the season.


“This shows a lot about these guys,” first-year Rams coach Ryan Martin said. “They could have given up early in the year, but they got better every day and it definitely showed at the end when we were in all of our games. We had some tough breaks early in the game tonight and could have given up, but the guys stuck to it one pitch at a time. They had high energy today and they were focused all game long.

“We’re happy we got a playoff game in and it was a winnable game. It was fun to be part of. Guys showed toughness. That’s the biggest thing. When our backs were against the wall, we showed togetherness and that’s the best thing to take out of the season. We have four seniors, but a lot of our pitching is coming back. We should be starting from a better place next year.”

Cheverus closed the regular season with a 6-3 home win over Gorham to wind up 11-5 and seventh in Class A South. The Stags hosted No. 10 Massabesic (8-8) Tuesday in the Round of 16. The teams didn’t play this spring and had no playoff history.

In Class C South, the Waynflete/NYA co-op team beat visiting Lake Region, 9-1, in its finale last week to wind up 11-5, a program-best for regular season victories, which was good for fifth in the region. Waynflete/NYA hosted No. 12 Mountain Valley (4-8) in the preliminary round Monday. The teams didn’t play this year and had no playoff history.

Looking ahead, the quarterfinals are Thursday and the semifinals will be played Saturday. Those games will be played on the fields of the higher seeds.


Cheverus and Deering’s softball teams met in a Class A South play-in game Saturday morning. The 16th-ranked Stags blanked the 17th-seeded Rams, 11-0, behind a two-hit shutout from Mackenzie Turner (who struck out a dozen) and two hits and three RBI from Eadie Nadeau.


Deering finished the year 0-17, while Cheverus improved to 5-12 and advanced to face No. 1 Marshwood (13-3) in the Round of 16 Tuesday. The Stags didn’t meet the Hawks this year. Cheverus won the lone prior playoff encounter, 1-0, in the 2014 Western A quarterfinals.

Portland finished the regular season with a record of 7-9 after closing with a 29-0 (five-inning) victory over Deering. The Bulldogs went to No. 4 Sanford (12-4) Tuesday in the Round of 16. The teams didn’t play this spring. Portland was 4-5 all-time in the postseason versus the Spartans, although they hadn’t met since the 1997 Western A semifinals (a 4-3 Sanford victory).

Looking ahead, the quarterfinals are Thursday and the semifinals will be played Saturday. Those games will be played on the fields of the higher seeds.

Boys’ lacrosse

Waynflete’s boys’ lacrosse team earned the top seed for the Class C state tournament and won’t have to leave the city of Portland in its quest for a second title in four years.

The Flyers capped a tremendous 11-1 regular season with home wins last week over Class A contender Portland (11-3) and Class B contender (7-6, in a double-overtime thriller). Against the Bulldogs, Sam Whipple scored three goals, while Harry Millspaugh and Roan Hopkins each added two goals and three assists. In the OT victory, Waynflete had to kill a penalty in the first extra session, then Millspaugh set up Whipple for the winner in the second overtime.

The Flyers will host either No. 8 Fryeburg Academy (6-6) or No. 9 Winslow (6-5) in the state quarterfinals Saturday at a time to be announced. Waynflete didn’t play either team this season. The Flyers have no postseason history with Winslow. They’re 2-0 all-time versus the Raiders, with a 17-11 victory in the 2016 Class B South quarterfinals the most recent.


“We want to go all the way,” said Waynflete senior defenseman Ben Adey. “That’s our goal. We’re feeling good.”

“It’s a special group and we’re doing special things,” said Flyers first-year coach Andrew Leach.

In Class A North, Portland earned the No. 3 seed after an 8-4 regular season, capped by an 11-8 win at Cheverus and an 11-3 loss at Waynflete. Johnny Sylvain made 18 saves against the Flyers. The Bulldogs will host No. 6 Windham (5-7) in the quarterfinals, likely on Wednesday. The teams didn’t play this spring. They did meet once before in the playoffs, a 12-6 Portland win in the 2018 Class A North semifinals.

Cheverus ended up 5-7 and ninth in the region after closing with an 11-8 home loss to Portland. The Stags were at No. 8 Maine Central Institute (3-7) Monday in the state preliminary round. The teams didn’t play this year and had no postseason history.

Deering wound up 3-9 and 10th in the region after closing with a 20-4 loss to Bonny Eagle last week. The Rams were at No. 7 Edward Little (3-9) Monday in the preliminary round. The teams didn’t play this year and had no postseason history.

The lacrosse semifinals will be held Friday and Saturday on the fields of the higher seeds.


Girls’ lacrosse

Waynflete’s Jess Connors plays defense against Cape Elizabeth during the Flyers’ 10-4 loss last week. Ben McCanna / Portland Press Herald

On the girls’ side, Waynflete finished 7-5 and third in Class C. The Flyers closed with a 10-4 loss at two-time reigning Class B champion Cape Elizabeth. Cece Bliss, Jess Connors, Laney Friedland and Tilsley Kelly scored the goals.

“We struggled early and had some turnovers,” Flyers coach Cathie Connors said. “We made some changes, moved some things around and we played as a team, and I saw some things that worked. Playing a tough team like that at the end will only help us.”

Waynflete will host No. 6 Wells (5-6) in the Class C state quarterfinals Saturday at a time to be announced. The Flyers beat the host Warriors, 10-2, back on May 14. Waynflete won the only previous playoff encounter between the schools, 18-7, way back in the 2010 Class B quarterfinals.

“It’s been an exciting season and I love that,” Connors said. “I feel like every game, we capitalized on things we worked on. In the tight games, we were able to pull it out in the last few minutes. Our defense is stepping up, our goalie is stepping up, we’re working on our transition. I like where we’re seeded. I think we have it in us to make a run. We’re psyched. Let the fun begin.”

In Class A North, Portland finished 6-6 and fifth in the region. The Bulldogs are at No. 4 Lewiston (7-5) Wednesday in the regional quarterfinals. The teams didn’t meet in the regular season. Two years ago, in the teams’ lone prior playoff encounter, Portland prevailed, 15-5.

Cheverus wound up 2-10 and seventh in Class A North and goes to No. 2 Windham (10-2) for a quarterfinal round game Wednesday. On May 24, the Stags lost at the Eagles, 16-5. Cheverus won both prior playoff meetings, 15-8 in the 2013 Eastern A semifinals and 14-8 in the 2014 Eastern A semifinal round.

Deering finished 3-5 after a 14-3 home win over Westbrook and a 20-9 home loss to Bonny Eagle. The Rams opted out of taking part in the postseason.

The lacrosse semifinals will be held Friday and Saturday on the fields of the higher seeds.

Kennebec Journal staff writer Drew Bonifant contributed to this story.

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

Comments are not available on this story.