January 2, 2013

COLLEGE NOTEBOOK: Badeen starts strong for Mariners

By Matt DiFilippo mdifilippo@centralmaine.com
Staff Writer

Mary Badeen joined the Maine Maritime Academy women's basketball team for the second semester -- too late to be part of the team picture on the school's website.

But even though Badeen played her first game for MMA on Sunday, she's already making a big impact.

The Mariners played in the Key Largo Classic in Tavernier, Fla. on Sunday and Monday. In their first game, the 5-foot-3 Badeen had 17 points and 11 rebounds in a double-overtime loss to UMass-Boston. Badeen came off the bench in that game, but played 40 minutes in her college debut.

On Monday, Badeen was in the starting lineup against Elmira. She had a team-high 19 points on 7-of-9 shooting and grabbed eight more rebounds. MMA won that game, 60-59. Badeen was the game's higher scorer, even though she played the final 8 1/2 minutes of the game without taking a shot from the field.

Badeen, who began her high school career at Nokomis and graduated from Messalonskee last year, went to Lasell for the fall semester before transferring. MMA is 4-4 overall and 2-1 in the North Atlantic Conference The Mariners play on the road against Colby-Sawyer, New England College and UMaine-Farmington in the next seven days. They also play at Thomas Jan. 17.

* * *

Former Winslow girls ice hockey standout Sarah Fowler now plays for Liberty University of Lynchburg, Va. The Lady Flames are a club team, playing in Division I of the American Collegiate Hockey Association. Division I includes schools as varied as Michigan and Ohio State on one end and Grand Valley State and Adrian College on the other.

Liberty is 14-1-0 and was ranked No. 1 in the most recent ACHA poll. Fowler, a freshman, has one goal and three assists in 15 games this season.

* * *

Greg O'Neill was a good three-sport athlete at Cony High School, excelling in football, basketball and baseball. But he knew he wouldn't be playing any of those sports at the varsity level at Division I Providence College.

Instead, O'Neill immersed himself in intramural sports at Providence, playing 3-on-3 and 5-on-5 basketball, flag football, softball and kickball. He ran into some pretty good former high school athletes, much like himself. Now a senior, he tried rugby for the first time this year, playing on the Providence club team which competes in the Northeast Conference against other New England schools, such as Bentley, Bryant, Holy Cross and St. Anselm.

"It was interesting," O'Neill said. "It's unlike anything I've ever played before."

O'Neill, who said he enjoyed the contact, played hooker and flanker, a couple of inside positions that don't often involve scoring. His Friars won the conference title and he's glad he gave the sport a try.

"I wanted to try something new before I graduated," he said.

Gary Hawkins contributed to this report.

Matt DiFilippo -- 861-9243


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