Three Venues

I hit up the Bangor/Augusta/Portland trifecta

Three Venues

One thing you hear a lot after a loss is, "well, you're not going to win very many games when you shoot like that." It's a way to justify a bad game, because bad games are painful.

But sometime, you do win when you shoot that badly.

Let's go to Bangor. Or, to be more precise, I went to Bangor for the B North Boys semifinals.

The Old Town boys shot 0/19 from 3 for the game. Zero for Nineteen. In fact, no one made a three until MDI's Spencer Laurendeau hit one with under a minute to play. What Old Town did get was 20 rebounds from Emmitt Byther (to go with 11 points).

They'll play Orono in the B North Regional Final.

The defending champs came out swinging, including this play to end the first quarter.

I was court-side for that and oh man was it nice from 30 feet away.

For all the talk of B North being wide-open, Orono certainly came out and made a statement. They held Chance Mercier to 8 points and led the entire way, eventually pushing the lead to double digits in the second half before Ellsworth went with the unusual strategy of burning through their fouls to get to the bonus with over 4 minutes to go.

It didn't work.

One thing that's become apparent as this season goes by is that it's harder to to execute the strategy of fouling to get back into the game without the possibility of your opponent missing the front end of a one-and-one. Especially if there's no shot clock to force them to give up the ball. Maybe someone will figure out some novel strategy that'll work better.

After that, I headed south, but apparently I missed a good one.

Tyler's got the video in there of Mikayla Emerson's game winner against MDI. Old Town will face Ellsworth in the Regional Final.

I got to Augusta in time for most of the second half of the Hampden/Cony girls game.

But I'd been following the games in Augusta, thanks to my LIVE stats partnership with the MPA. They've been doing stats for the games from the ACC, while I get (most of) Portland.

LIVE Stats
Live stats of selected games

It's going well and I'm hoping it can be expanded eventually to cover every game in the tournament. It's pretty nice to check on the score from other venue.

Plus, you can see the play-by-play of each game, box scores, visuals, and more.

I'm working on uploading game reports.

So I knew Jonathan Tangilamesu put up a double-double for St. Dom's and Valley Harry Louis had just missed a triple-double with 27 points, 12 assists, and 9 rebounds as Valley rolled.

Anyway, Hampden had been up by double-digits in the first half, but Cony had slowly chipped away. The Rams took the lead for good in the third quarter and never looked back, pulling away down the stretch to win by 12. Abby Morrill led the way with 15.

In the other Girls A North semifinal, Lawrence raced out to a 21-3 lead and that's around the time I packed up my stuff and left. Lily Gray led the Bulldogs with 20 & 12.

Down in Portland, the Girls AA semifinals were underway at the hockey rink formerly known as the Portland Civic Center. And we got some free basketball!

Oxford Hills would win this in OT. They'll face Cheverus in the final.

I'll be there today for the Boys Semis, as the Expo is dark on Thursday (it's a built-in buffer in case of blizzard).

I made it down to the Expo for the Boys A South Semis, which drew 2,050 fans for the session.

In the first game, Noble put together a 22-6 second quarter to take control of a tight game against Westbrook. Jamier Rose was everywhere for the Knights and we were on triple-double watch in the second half. He finished with 22/9a/8s/5r and, man, he's fun to watch.

As for Noble, they earn their first-ever spot in a Regional Final.

What a great story.

Meanwhile, back in Augusta...

So in my podcast episode where I pick a Cinderella in each region, I picked Messo. They beat Hampden by 30+ at the end of the regular season and a couple people there told me that they would have won even if Zach McLaughlin had been available. So I wasn't surprised they won. I was surprised they held Evans Sterling to only 7 points.

We spend a lot of time during basketball season complaining about the worst of basketball parents, whether they're freaking out about a student section turning around or spending 32 minutes proving they don't know the rules or undermining the coach at every turn, so it's good to see there's some who are just living their best life.

If we're not having fun with this, then what are we even doing?

Anyway, this was a battle, but Hampden was able to pull away later. JJ Wolfington had 18 points and 13 rebounds for the Broncos. Will Duke had 18 for the Windjammers.

Hampden will face Messalonskee in the final, a team they lost to by 33 at the end of the year. That was without Zach McLaughlin, but also part of what now is a 9 game winning streak.

The Eagles dominated Mount Blue last night, holding Evans Sterling to 7 points on 3/10 shooting in a game that wasn't nearly as close as the score. Merrick Smith had 14 points and 19 rebounds

The semifinals were rather rough for our Mr. Basketball front-runners. Evans Sterling scored 7 in a loss. Chance Mercier scored 8 in a loss. Carter Galley won, but was held without a FG. The door might be open for a dark horse.

The final game of the night was GNG and Freeport and it was electric.

Freeport kept up their hot shooting from the quarterfinals, going 11/23 from 3. JT Pound was 4/6 from distance as part of his 18 points. But GNG matched them, going 10/21 from 3.

But the real issue for GNG wasn't Freeport's shooting. It was foul trouble. Nate and Aidan Hebert each had 3 in the first half (Aidan would eventually foul out).

The teams matched big shot after big shot and Freeport had a chance to tie with under a minute to go, but it rimmed out and GNG made their free throws to advance.

The A South Regional Final is going to be a lot of fun.

This LSU game-winner is awesome.

You want to see a wide-open semifinal?

Mattanawcook is the only team to beat Dexter this year and nearly beat them in the second game, so Dexter can't be happy to see them in the semifinals.

The Model's picks for the rest of today's games are after the jump.