Monday, March 10, 2014
Kennebec Journal Staff
Winthrop High School athletic director Chris Moreau is new to the job but not the profession. Moreau was hired last week to replace outgoing AD and Dean of Students Dwayne Conway, who accepted a position as principal at Marancook Community High School.
Moreau, 41, has made several stops at Maine high schools, serving the last two years as AD at Dirigo. He held the same position at Lisbon and similar posts at Livermore Falls, South Portland, Scarborough, Dexter and Sumner. The Winthrop job fits well into Moreau's plans.
"We decided to locate back home," said Moreau, who lives in nearby Jay. "Family means too much."
Moreau coached baseball, softball and boys and girls soccer among other sports at Livermore and was a three-sport athlete himself in high school. He'll serve as dean of students as well as middle school and high school athletic director.
"I'm going to have the ability to follow kids from sixth grade through graduation," he said.
Athletics face the same budget challenges at Winthrop as they do at high schools throughout the state. Moreau hopes to maintain all the sports the school has to offer while streamlining the operation. The Ramblers already play co-operative schedules in golf and ice hockey and this year welcomed Monmouth students into its football program.
"The transition has been seamless," Moreau said. "Class C schools in general are all facing the same battle. We're looking at every conceivable and possible option."
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Winslow senior Jordyn Dorval is hoping to be back on the field before the end of the season. Dorval, a sweeper who has long been a part of the Black Raiders' solid defense, tore her ACL in the spring and had surgery in June.
Dorval is still a regular at practice, but she's instructing rather than playing.
"She's invaluable to me because she's another coach on the field for us," Winslow coach Mary Beth Bourgoin said. "She's stepping into a completely different role than what was expected, but she's awesome at it."
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Speaking of torn ACLs, Nokomis girls soccer coach Gary Sinclair is happy to get two of his top players back this season, both of whom suffered torn ACLs within a week of each other last season.
Strangely enough, they're also sisters.
Kylie and Kelsie Richards were both injured early last season, along with teammate Sierra Fortin, leaving the Warriors without a true scorer. Nokomis finished the regular season with a 7-7 record, losing to Ellsworth in the preliminary round of the Eastern Class B playoffs.
"We lost a lot of 1-0 games," Sinclair said.
Now that all three players return, Sinclair said there should be a better balance with the team and a better chance at putting numbers up on Nokomis' side of the scoreboard.
"How far they go is where we're going to go," Sinclair said.
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Conditioning will be as important to Maranacook as it is to any field hockey team in the state. After not fielding a middle school team last fall, the Black Bears have 12 players in their high school program this year.
Maranacook coach Tanya Evans said during practice last week, the Black Bears ran a distance of nearly three miles as a team.
"The first run, they were gone for 26 minutes, and the last one, they were back in 19," Evans said.
Evans said there will be a feeder program starting this year for girls in kindergarten through sixth grade. Her goal is to get 20 girls the first year.
"You need the feeder program to support the high school program," she said.
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Field hockey teams will be playing short-handed much more often in 2013, thanks to a new rule about green cards.
Like soccer, field hockey has long had a series of cards for violations. In field hockey, green meant a warning, yellow meant the player was out for five minutes and a red card was an ejection.
Now, the green cards have some bite, because the offending player will have to sit out for two minutes while her team makes do with 10 players on the field. College field hockey currently uses the two-minute rule for green cards.
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The Class B soccer schedule in the Kennebec Valley Athletic Conference got a lot tougher this season with the addition of two former Class A schools: Waterville and Erskine Academy. Maranacook, one of the dominant teams in Class B for the past several years, is dropping to Class C but will maintain its KVAC Class B schedule.
Waterville boys coach Kerry Serdjenian believes his team would be good again in Class A this season, but in the long run, sees the drop to class B as beneficial.
"We have lean junior and sophomores classes," he said. "We'll see a couple of lean years."
Carrabec is no longer collaborating with Madison as a cooperative team. The past two yeras, the Cobras have had just one Madison player on their team and the affiliation was dropped this year. The Cobras graduated eight seniors and have just 16 players, including five freshmen. Coach Paul Vicneire said there are plans to set up a travel team for grades 3-5 and added "our junior high program is pretty strong."
After playing co-ed soccer the past two seasons, Valley will go back to single gender teams this year. There are 43 boys in the school and 17 are playing soccer while the girls have put together enough for a team despite a school enrollment of 26.