The Eastern Maine Class C finals were set Friday, with the region's best teams vying for their chance to play on Championship Saturday at the Cross Insurance Center in Bangor.
Orono Stuns Houlton To Advance To EM Finals
The Orono Red Riots upset the defending state champion Houlton Shiretowners Friday night, advancing to Saturday's Eastern Maine finals in a packed Cross Insurance Center.
Orono, who came into the tournament as the seventh seed, took the lead for the first time with less than a minute remaining and came away with a 42-38 win over the No. 3 Shiretowners.
Orono guard Nate Desisto, who had 9 points, was clutch in the final quarter hitting a key three-pointer to tie the game with 1:10 remaining. He also went 4-6 from the foul line in that final period, in which the Red Riots outscored Houlton 21-11.
Jake Koffman, another sophomore, had 9 points. Damien Heeger and Keenan Collett each added 6
Houlton struggled from the line, missing 13 foul shots in the game, going 7 for 20 from the line.
Houlton standout Kyle Bouchard scored 18 points before fouling of the game. Christian Crane added as 16 points for the Shiretowners.
The Orono boys last made the semifinals in 1997.
Calais Holds Off Central To Earn Spot in Finals
The top-seed Calais Blue Devils pulled away from the Central Red Devils on Friday, earning a and a trip to the Eastern Maine finals against No. 7 Orono.
Central led for much of the first half, but the veteran Calais team chipped away until taking a 40-39 lead into the fourth quarter. From there, the Blue Devils hit key shots and outlasted the Red Devils to came away with a 60-52 win.
It was a balanced attack from the Blue Devils. Trevon Rhodes led Calais with 15 points. Tyler Niles and Andre Paul both had 13 points and Kyle Johnson added 8 points.
Both teams struggled from the line, with Calais going 13 for 27 and Central going 12 for 21.
Central ends the season with a 14-6 record.
Calais, a perennial contender in the tournament, improves to 18-2 on the season.
Dexter Tigers Earn Finals Bid With Win Over Mattanawcook
The Dexter Tigers started with a 6-0 run and never trailed in their Eastern Maine semifinal on their way to a 43-37 win over the Mattanawcook Academy Lynx on Friday.
The Lynx cut the lead to four points in the fourth quarter, but Dexter was able to widen it when it counted, pulling away in the final three minutes.
Seniors Michalea White and Tasha Pratt each scored 12 points in the win, which brings the Tigers's record to 18-2 and earns them a spot in the finals against the Houlton Shiretowners.
Sophomore Megan Peach added 9 points for the Tigers.
The Lynx were led by senior Courtney McIntyre with 14 points, 12 of which came in the fourth quarter. Merideth Blessard scored 8 points, all in the second half to help the Lynx keep the game close.
Dexter advanced to the semifinals after ousting the defending champion Calais Blue Devils in an overtime thriller.
Houlton Girls Advance With Win Over PCHS Pirates
The Houlton Shiretowners on Friday earned a trip to the Eastern Maine finals with a 45-29 win over the No. 3 Piscataquis Community High School Pirates at the Cross Insurance Center in Bangor.
Houlton freshman Kolleen Bouchard finished with 14 points in the game despite early foul trouble keeping her on the bench for much of the first half. The Shiretowners led throughout, and hit 9 for 12 free throws down the stretch when PCHS was forced to foul.
Natalie Hill added 11 for the Shiretowners. Katie Condon finished with 9 points.
For the Pirates, junior center Delani Bennett, also in early foul trouble, finished with 9 points before fouling out with 2:50 left to go in the game.
Senior Alex Speed finishes her career with 8 points, and Haylee Patterson added 6.
PCHS finishes the season at 15-5.
Cross Insurance Center, Bangor
Eastern Class C Semifinals
#2-Houlton 45 def. #3-Piscataquis 29 [GIRLS]
#4-Dexter 43 def. #8-Mattanawcook Academy 37 [GIRLS]
#7-Orono 42 def. #3-Houlton 38 [BOYS]
#1-Calais 60 def. #4-Central 52 [BOYS]
Augusta Civic Center
Western Class D Semifinals
#2-Rangeley 39 def. #6-Searsport 35 [GIRLS]
#4-Richmond 35 def. #9-Vinalhaven 28 [GIRLS]
Western Class C Semifinals
#3-Dirigo 58 def. #10-Madison 44 [GIRLS]
#1-Maranacook 64 def. #5-Mountain Valley 29 [GIRLS]
#2-Dirigo 58 def. #3-Waynflete 36 [BOYS]
#8-Maranacook 64 def. #4-Winthrop 39 [BOYS]
Cross Insurance Arena, Portland
Western Class A Semifinals
#1-Portland 59 def. #5-Deering 57 [BOYS]
#3-Falmouth 67 def. #2-South Portland 57 [BOYS]