Falmouth High’s Brady Coyne, left, and Jack Stowell are averaging over 20 points a game for the 6-1 Navigators. Ben McCanna/Staff Photographer

FALMOUTH — In the preseason, Class A South coaches unanimously pointed to Falmouth High as the team to beat. Their reasoning? The Navigators had two of the best, if not the two best, guards in the league in seniors Brady Coyne and Jack Stowell.

To this point, those predictions have been very accurate. And so have Stowell and Coyne with their shooting. Both players are averaging over 20 points a game, and Falmouth is 6-1 and atop the Class A South Heal point standings.

“They’re very competitive and they sort of feed off of each other,” said Falmouth Coach Dave Halligan. “They play against each other in practice. They match up because they want to play the best.”

Other than South Portland High, which beat Falmouth, 58-41, the only thing to slow down Stowell and Coyne has been the ongoing pandemic. Falmouth is in the midst of a 15-day break, which is expected to end Friday with a trip to the Portland Expo to play Class AA Portland.

“This year has been a weird year (with the postponements). Last year was a weird year,” Coyne said, referring to the 2020-21 season when no tournaments were held. “We’re trying to play for something this year.”

Stowell said the loss at South Portland, the top team in Class AA South, motivated Falmouth.

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“We got some fire and started to work a lot harder and I think we’re just coming into our own right now,” he said.

Stowell, a quick 6-foot left-hander who can shoot off the catch or off his own dribble, is leading Class A South scorers with 23 points per game. In the season opener, he hit five 3-pointers before Biddeford scored a point in Falmouth’s 84-40 rout.

“And that’s the way the season’s gone,” Halligan said. “He’s a streak shooter.”

Jack Stowell is a quick 6-foot left-hander who can shoot off the catch or off his own dribble. He leads Class A South scorers with 23 points per game. Ben McCanna/Staff Photographer

Stowell also leads the league by making 4.4 3-pointers per game (on 45 percent shooting). His 90.5 percent free-throw shooting also leads the league.

Coyne, who stands 6-1, is second in the league with 20.3 points per game. He leads Falmouth with 3.3 assists and 2.8 steals per game and makes 2.2 3s per game. Stowell calls his teammate an “elite” shooter.

Halligan, who has over 1,000 combined wins as a basketball and soccer coach, said he has never had two 20-point scorers on the same team in his previous 34 seasons at Falmouth.

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“They’re both serious about the game,” Halligan said. “They come in here and they’re working on their game. They’re the first ones here and you have to kick them out at the end because they’re the last ones here. They put all that extra time in.

“The difference between good and great is that little extra effort, and that’s what they both do,” Halligan added.

Six-foot-1 Brady Coyne leads Falmouth with 3.3 assists and 2.8 steals per game, and is second among Class A South scorers with 20.3 points per game. Ben McCanna/Staff Photographer

It will get tougher for both Stowell and Coyne to continue to score at their current clip. In their six wins, the Navigators have averaged 83.2 points, with three 90-plus games, against teams with a combined record of 19-34.

Three of their next four games (at Portland, at Marshwood, home against Thornton Academy) are against defensive-minded squads. Scoring also typically drops significantly in the playoffs.

Plus, the Navigators are getting increased contributions from the likes of junior center Judd Armstrong, Luke Dilworth and Zach Morrill. Armstrong has scored a total of 37 points in Falmouth’s two most recent games.

“They are as good as advertised,” said Marshwood Coach Bobby Pratt, whose team lost at Falmouth 64-46 in mid-December. “They’ve got the two guards, but their other players are fantastic. You see their scores offensively, but what impressed me is they played really hard on the defensive end, too.”

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Coyne, 17, is the younger brother of Thomas and Colin Coyne, who formed the starting backcourt on Falmouth’s 2016 Class A championship team. He is planning to play basketball at Bates, as Thomas did. Colin Coyne was on the Bates baseball team.

Stowell, also 17, has a younger brother, Henry, who is on the Falmouth varsity. Jack Stowell has committed to play basketball at Worcester Polytechnic Institute.

A big reason for the success of Coyne and Stowell is that they both are effective point guards, even though their skill sets project to being shooting guards in college. Changing roles, sometimes possession-by-possession, make things tougher on opponents.

“We want to push, we want to get up and down and run, so if Jack’s in position to get the ball and on the go and I’m up the court, we’re going to go with that, and vice versa,” Coyne said.

“We’re both good players. We can both score. We can both distribute,” Stowell said. “And if everyone is scoring, if everyone is distributing, it’s just demoralizing for the other team.”


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