BRADEN SMITH, Senior – Football

Smith

• Eight-man, large school all-star
• All-Academic
• Captain

Smith was the anchor on both sides of the ball for an absolutely dominant Stags team this fall.

Smith has been a part of the program since his freshman year and after missing out on his junior season due to the season being wiped out by COVID, he served as a captain this fall and played a major role in the squad’s success.

Cheverus joined the eight-man ranks for the first time and behind Smith’s leadership, blocking on offense and ability to disrupt the opposition as part of the “Gold Swarm” defense, ran the table, scoring 380 points and surrendering just 48. The Stags shut out the opposition in their final five games, including all three playoff contests, and capped the year with a 56-0 blanking of Waterville in the eight-man large division state final.

“This means so much,” Smith said. “It’s even sweeter after not having a season last year. Ever since I came in as a freshman, I’ve looked forward to this moment.”

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Cheverus’ program is back on top and the future is bright. The contributions of Braden Smith are a big reason why.

Coach Mike Vance’s comment: “Braden was the most disruptive defensive lineman in the league, even getting a rare Player of the Year vote at that position from one coach because of his impact. He led the league in tackles for loss and devastated opponent blocking schemes with his explosive play. He was also the best center in the league. Not even close. He just dominated much bigger opponents every week. And all at 215 pounds. He’s the epitome of a student-athlete, very intelligent, hard-working, respectful, conscientious, extremely competitive and yet as humble as any player I’ve coached. He’s a throwback to an earlier time. He’s a gentleman and an outstanding leader by example. He was the heartbeat of our team.

File photo

Prior winners:

• 2020 Jesse Cadigan (cross country)
• 2019 Sean Tompkins (football)
• 2018 Teigan Lindstedt (football)
• 2017 Luc Dionne (soccer)
• 2016 Jack Casale (football)
• 2015 Jake Tomkinson (soccer)
2014 Joe Fitzpatrick (football)
• 2013 Joe Fitzpatrick (football)
• 2012 Donald Goodrich (football)
• 2011 Elliot Maker (soccer)
• 2010 Peter Gwilym (football)
• 2009 Peter Gwilym (football)
2008 Jack Terwilliger (cross country)
• 2007 Galen Munroe (soccer)
• 2006 Andrew Pochebit (football)
• 2005 Anthony Ardito (golf)
• 2004 Max Molleo (soccer)

TAYLOR TORY, Junior – Field hockey

Tory

• Northern New England all-region
* All-State
• SMAA All-Conference, first-team
• Captain

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Tory and her teammates enjoyed a history-making season for the ages which culminated with the program’s first championship and her prolific offensive production was the spark.

Tory burst on to the scene as a freshman and was a key contributor during her COVID-shortened sophomore campaign. This fall, Tory was a seasoned veteran on a team that was bursting at the seams with terrific young players and she helped the Stags become an unstoppable force.

Cheverus ran the table winning all 18 games by outscoring the opposition, 99-9. Tory accounted for almost half of the goals, setting a new program record by scoring 38 of them, while assisting on eight others.

Highlights included four goals and an assist in an early confidence-building win over reigning regional champion Biddeford, a hat trick in a victory over Sanford, a goal and an assist in a win over Bonny Eagle, two goals in a victory over Kennebunk, two goals in a win over Thornton Academy, three goals and an assist in a victory over Noble, three goals and two assists in a win over South Portland, four goals in a victory over Portland/Deering and a hat trick in a win over Westbrook.

Tory continued to shine in the playoffs, scoring twice and adding an assist in a quarterfinal round win over Kennebunk, rattling the cage twice, including the go-ahead tally in the fourth quarter, in a regional final victory over Scarborough, then scoring one final goal in a stunningly decisive 4-1 win over perennial champion Skowhegan in the Class A state final, which gave the Stags their first-ever title.

“It’s unbelievable,” Tory said. “It’s well deserved, 100%.”

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The best news for Cheverus is that Tory has one year left and she’d love nothing more than to lead the Stags to the pinnacle one more time. Don’t bet against her.

Coach Theresa Hendrix’s comment: “Taylor worked extremely hard in the offseason on her fitness, skill and mental aspects of the game. Her hard work paid off and shined this year on the field as she led the way with being so strong in the scoring circle. Taylor’s confidence grew, which in turn helped the confidence of the team. We are really proud of Taylor.”

File photo

Prior winners:

• 2020 Lucia Pompeo (field hockey)
• 2019 Emma Gallant (soccer)
• 2018 Sophia Pompeo (field hockey)
• 2017 Michaela Jordan (soccer)
• 2016 Hannah Abbott (field hockey)
• 2015 Becca Archer (field hockey)
• 2014 Abby Goodrich (soccer)
• 2013 Elyse Caiazzo (field hockey)
• 2012 Staci Swallow (field hockey)
• 2011 Sarah LaQuerre (field hockey)
• 2010 Emily Sawchuck (field hockey)
• 2009 Emily Durgin (cross country)
• 2008 Bethany Schleh (field hockey)
• 2007 Elizabeth Somma (soccer)
• 2006 Elise Roux (soccer)
• 2005 Meaghan Mingo (soccer)
• 2004 Lauren Metevier (soccer)

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

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