SCARBOROUGH—All eyes on are on defending state champion South Portland and preseason favorite Thornton Academy this winter in Class AA South boys’ basketball, but there might be another team making a run at the big boys.

The Gorham Rams.

Saturday afternoon at Scarborough Alumni Gymnasium, the Rams showed an ability to hit outside shots during a second half surge and that led them to victory over the host Red Storm.

Scarborough came out strong and held a 13-11 lead after one quarter, but Gorham went on top by as much as six in the second period before taking a 26-21 advantage to the break.

The Red Storm then crept within two on a 3-pointer from junior Blake Harris, but Rams junior sharpshooter Caden Smith soon took over, draining three 3s in the period, and Gorham rode an 18-3 run to a commanding 47-30 advantage.

Scarborough never got closer than 16 points from there and the Rams went on to a 65-47 victory.


Smith scored a game-high 15 points, senior Devin Dobson-Jacques added 14 and Gorham won its fifth game without a loss and in the process, dropped the Red Storm to 1-3.

“We’re still young and we’ve been inconsistent up to this point, but it’s nice to get wins,” said Rams coach Mark Karter.

One big run

Scarborough opened by rallying for a 60-53 victory at Sanford, then lost at home to Thornton Academy (71-29) and Monday at home to Bonny Eagle (62-44).

Gorham, meanwhile, rolled out of the gate by beating host Windham (68-58), visiting Sanford (73-48), host Massabesic (76-29) and visiting Greely (66-59) in an interclass showdown Tuesday.

Last year, the Rams took both meetings, 50-42 in Scarborough and 50-35 in Gorham.


Thursday, the Rams took care of business again, but it took awhile for them to hit their stride.

Scarborough junior Blake Harris plays tight defense on Gorham junior Gabe Michaud during the Rams’ 65-47 victory Thursday. Hoffer photos.

The Red Storm opened the scoring, as senior captain Ethan Blanche stole the ball and set up Harris for a layup, but Gorham answered on a 3-point shot from senior Quinn Dillon and a layup from sophomore Wyatt Nadeau, set up by Smith.

Scarborough then got consecutive 3s from junior Liam Jefferds and Blanche to retake the lead before Dillon tied the score, 8-8, with a 3-ball.

After senior D’Angelo Alston scored on a putback, junior Gabe Michaud tied the game for the Rams for the third time on a reverse layup.

Late in the quarter, Freshman Carter Blanche made a 3 for the Red Storm and while junior Ashton Leclerc got a point back at the line for the Rams, Scarborough clung to a 13-11 advantage heading for the second quarter.


There, a 3-ball from junior Nate Glidden gave the Red Storm their biggest lead.

After Nadeau countered with two free throws, Ethan Blanche fed Alston for a layup and an 18-13 edge with 5:45 to go in the half.

And that would be as good as it got for Scarborough.

A layup from Michaud sparked an 11-0 run.

Michaud then converted an old-fashioned three-point play (layup, foul, free throw) to tie the score.

With 2:53 to go before halftime, Smith’s first 3 gave Gorham the lead for good and Smith capped the run with a long 3 to make it 24-18.


With 1:06 left, Alston made a layup for the Red Storm’s first points in 4 minutes, 39 seconds and after Carter Blanche added one free throw, Leclerc was fouled with just 2.8 seconds to go and he hit both attempts for a 26-21 halftime advantage.

Scarborough junior Blake Harris is shadowed by Gorham junior Gabe Michaud.

Scarborough started the second half strong with a 3-ball from Harris just 19 seconds in, but Gorham dominated the rest of the third period and opened up an insurmountable lead.

After Smith got a 3-pointer to rattle in, Glidden made a baseline jumper for the hosts, but Smith made a 3 from the corner, Dillon made a layup after a steal and Smith hit his third 3 of the frame to push the lead into double digits, 37-26.

“I thought Caden really came to play in the third quarter,” Karter said. “He rebounded well and he hit those 3s.”

Ethan Blanche tried to stem the tide with a free throw, but Dobson-Jacques got in on the fun with a 3-pointer, Leclerc got a runner in the lane to rattle in and Leclerc added a jump shot.

In the final minute, Harris made a 3 for the Red Storm, but after sophomore Griffin Gammon kept possession alive with an offensive rebound, Dobson-Jacques buried a dagger 3-pointer just before the horn to make it 47-30 Gorham.


“Credit Gorham,” said Scarborough coach Phil Conley. “They hit some outside shots in the third period. They made a run there and that was the difference.”

Any lingering doubt was extinguished early in the fourth period, as Michaud drove for a layup, then Leclerc scored on a putback to stretch the lead to 21.

Jefferds answered with a 3, but Dobson-Jacques fed sophomore Griffin Gammon for a layup and after a Harris 3, Dobson-Jacques found Gammon for another layup. A three-point play from Jefferds pulled Scarborough within 16, but that’s as close as the hosts would get.

After Dobson-Jacques sank a 3, Gammon made another layup.

A puback from Red Storm freshman Spencer Booth was countered by a pair of free throws from Dobson-Jacques.

After Alston hit a free throw for Scarborough, Dobson-Jacques sank two foul shots, then he made one more for the Rams’ final point.


In the final minute, Red Storm junior Brayden Couture scored on a leaner and freshman Will MacDonald sank a 3, but Gorham went on to prevail, 65-47.

“I think we were just stagnant in the first half, then we were much better in the third quarter and hit some shots,” Karter said. “I thought Scarborough played great. They’re very good on defense. They’re a young team, but they’ll be there by the end of the season.”

Smith scored 15 points, on five 3s, and grabbed eight rebounds. Dobson-Jacques also finished in double figures with 14 points, to go with three assists.

Leclerc and Michaud (six assists, four rebounds) each added nine points, Dillon (five rebounds, three assists) had eight, Gammon (four rebounds) finished with six and Nadeau (four rebounds) contributed four.

The Rams had a 29-28 edge on the glass, only turned the ball over six times and hit 11-of-14 free throws.

For Scarborough, Harris led the way with 11 points, Jefferds had nine, Alston seven (to go with five rebounds), Glidden five (as well as five rebounds), Carter Blanche and Ethan Blanche (five assists) four apiece, MacDonald three and Booth and Couture two each.


The Red Storm committed 14 turnovers and made 4-of-9 free throws.

“I’m happy with my kids’ effort,” said Conley. “I thought their energy for a full 32 minutes was there. I wanted to see how we came out today after the TA and Bonny Eagle games. We had two good days of practice. We talked about energy level and the guys showed it today. If we have that energy all season, practice and games, we’re going to be OK.”

A new year beckons

Gorham goes for its sixth consecutive victory next Wednesday, but it has to do so at Thornton Academy.

“It’s TA, South Portland, Bonny Eagle and I’d like to think we can be right there with them,” Karter said. “I like our ceiling. We can still get better if we work hard.”

Scarborough, meanwhile, hopes to get back on track Wednesday of next week at Bonny Eagle.

“I think the SMAA South is really tough and you have to come ready to play every game,” Conley said. “Everyone makes the tournament and we’ll get better as we go. I love this group and we’re staying together. They don’t act like they’re 1-3.”

Michael Hoffer can be reached at Follow him on Twitter: @foresports.

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