December 31, 2013

TOP 10 SPORTS STORIES: Skowhegan field hockey dominates

Indians' continued run of excellence tops list of Sports stories.

By Matt Difilippo And Travis Lazarczyk
Staff Writers

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Gabe Souza/Staff Photographer Skowhegan's Mikayla Toh, left, receives a hug from Rylie Blanchet, as the Indians celebrate their win over Scarborough in the Class A field hockey championship at Yarmouth High School Saturday, November 2, 2013.

As a senior at Waterville, Brown was dominant in both indoor and outdoor track and field. At the indoor state championships in February, she set the Class B record in the mile and the 2-mile, then finished second at the New England meet in the 2-mile. In the spring, she won three individual titles, a relay title and set the Class B state record in the 800. After that, she placed third in the 5,000 and eighth in the 2-mile at the New Balance Nationals.

Brown planned to go to the University of Connecticut, but when UConn coach Andrea Grove-McDonough resigned and took the head job at Iowa State, Brown followed her to the midwest. As a freshman, Brown finished fifth as Iowa State won the Big 12 Cross Country Championship, and took 37th at nationals to earn All-American honors.

McClintock placed 20th in the World Junior Cross Country Championships in March, which was the best finish by an American in four years. He set a goal of winning the Big Ten Cross Country title as a sophomore, and nearly achieved it.

McClintock came in second at the Big Ten meet, just one second behind Wisconsin’s Malachy Schrobilgen. At the NCAA championships three weeks later, McClintock came in 37th in a field of 254 runners, becoming Purdue’s first All-American in cross country since 1987.


5. Forest Hills boys basketball wins Class D state title

When they arrived back in Jackman after the Class D state championship game, the Forest Hills High School boys basketball team was greeted with fireworks and quite possibly the biggest party the school has ever seen.

That happens when you win the first boys basketball title in school history.

The Tigers defeated Central Aroostook 55-48 in the last Class D state championship game played at the Bangor Auditorium. Forest Hills never trailed in the game, but led just 43-40 when Mr. Basketball semifinalist Evan Worster fouled out with just under four minutes to play. The undermanned and young Tigers rallied without their leader, pulling away for the win.

Sophomore Matt Turner scored 16 points and senior Derick Ouellette added 13. When the game was over, head coach Anthony Amero sprinted across the court to celebrate with the Forest Hills fans.

Forest Hills went 20-2 in 2012-13, and beat rival Valley in the Western D final.


6. Kristy Bernatchez contributes as a freshman at the University of North Carolina

Messalonskee graduate Kristy Bernatchez was named Most Valuable Player of the McNally East-West Senior All-Star Field hockey Game this summer. As a college freshman, she joined the University of North Carolina field hockey team, one of the top programs in the country.

The Tar Heels won their first eight games and were ranked No. 1 in the nation. They finished 18-6 and made the final four of the NCAA tournament, losing to eventual national champion Connecticut in double overtime.

As a true freshman, Bernatchez was a key part of the team. She played in all 24 games and started six. When she didn’t start, Bernatchez was often the first player off the bench for North Carolina, finishing the season with five goals and one assist.


7. Waterville sweeps boys and girls outdoor track titles

No one was really surprised that the Waterville girls won the Class B outdoor track title — it was the seventh consecutive state championship for the Purple Panthers, and they had won the indoor title in the winter. But when the Waterville boys edged out Falmouth for the Class B boys title, it became a great day to be a Panther, no matter what the gender.

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