Mike Giordano figured his Scarborough High girls’ basketball team would need time to grow this season.

The Red Storm have grown up fast.

Scarborough has been one of the surprise teams in Class AA, ranked second in the South Heal point standings with an 8-3 record going into Thursday’s home game against Noble.

Included in those wins were back-to-back stunners over Gorham (44-39) and Cheverus (45-40), handing each team its first loss of the season.

“The kids have come together and they’re playing for each other,” said Giordano. “And they like each other. Those are the types of teams that have a chance to go all the way if they have any talent, too.”

Scarborough has that. Senior Lindsay Fiorillo is averaging 15.9 points per game and making big plays whenever needed. Sophomore Caroline Hartley is averaging 10 points, 6.0 rebounds and 2.1 steals. And freshman point guard Emerson Flaker has been coming on. She had 15 points in the win against Cheverus and is averaging 3.6 steals and 3.0 assists.

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“The kids are just confident right now,” said Giordano. “Going back to the preseason, we’ve been in every game. And a lot of that goes back to how well we are playing at the defensive end. That gives us a chance every night.”

The biggest obstacle now for the Red Storm is their schedule. Because of COVID-related postponements, Scarborough played three games last week, will play three this week (it faces Edward Little at home on Friday) and has three games scheduled for next week.

“It’s not great, but I’d rather that then not play the games,” said Giordano. “We practiced (Wednesday), but you can’t go hard because of what you’ve got in front of you. And you’re trying to prepare for two games instead of one. Scouting is important. So, what did you see in your future opponents that you can work on Wednesday so you’re somewhat prepared for Thursday and Friday?

“It’s difficult on the kids. A lot of those games, you’re reacting to what you see on the fly. You’d like to think at this point of the season that you might have covered everything you’re going to see pressure-wise or zone versus man (defense). But there may be something they throw at you haven’t seen from them before.”

The Jan. 18 win over Gorham, incidentally, was special for Giordano. It was the 300th of his career, including his time at South Portland.

“When you look back, it’s a long period of succes,s and I’ve felt we’ve always done it the right way,” said Giordano. “But it’s also about the relationships I’ve had, with coaches and opposing coaches and, obviously, the kids. Those are special relationships. You know you’ve left a mark when you hear from people you coached a long time ago.”

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WINDHAM ALSO is playing well. The Eagles are 9-4 and ranked fourth in Class AA North. They had a six-game winning streak snapped Tuesday with a one-point loss to top-ranked Cheverus.

“Our defense has been pretty good,” said Coach Brody Artes. “We’ve definitely improved a lot from last year to this year. We’re playing good team basketball and we’ve been relying on transition offense to get points on the board. But defense has been our mainstay.”

The Eagles, who play at Hampden Academy on Friday, are allowing just 40.5 points per game.

They are led by senior guard Sarah Talon, who’ll take her talents to the University of Maine next year. Talon is averaging 17.9 points, 10 rebounds, 2.5 steals and 2.3 blocks.

Artes said many other players have stepped up at different times, including Carly Morey, Abbey Thornton, Riley Shaw and Stella Jarvais.

The Eagles have a tough remaining schedule, including back-to-back games against Oxford Hills and Cheverus to close the season.

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“Our schedule has been daunting all year,” said Artes. “But it gets us that much more ready for the playoffs, and we’re going to have to get by those teams anyway if we want to make a deep run.”

UNDEFEATED OCEANSIDE returned to competition for the first time since Jan. 11 with a game against Waterville on Thursday.

The Mariners have been in a COVID-19 pause, and Coach Matt Breen said he still doesn’t have his full roster back. But he does have junior guard Audrey Mackie and freshman forward Bailey Breen. They are both averaging about 18 points a game.

“We’ve only been having six or seven at practice, so that makes it difficult,” said Matt Breen. “I’m just hoping we can play well and execute and that the girls I do have are in pretty decent shape.”

Abby Waterman and Anna Kingsbury have been instrumental in the Mariners’ 10-0 start as well. Oceanside is ranked second in Class B South.

“I feel like we’re on the path I was hoping for,” said Matt Breen. “We’re still looking to improve. There are plenty of areas we can continue to get better at.”


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