Smith’s torrid shooting leads Ponies to win at Presque Isle
Hunter Smith exploded for 38 points to lead the Foxcroft Academy boys’ basketball team to a 71-50 win at Presque Isle on Saturday. The win improves the Ponies, who fell to PCHS and MDI earlier in the week, to 4-6.
Smith connected on 16-30 shots and was 5-7 from the line to establish a new career high in scoring. The junior, who scored 26 of his 38 after the break, also pulled down seven rebounds and had four assists. Sean Cody added 11 points and five rebounds while Dylan Harmon-Weeks stuffed the box score with four points, eight rebounds, six steals, and four assists. Drew Dankert, Nick Clawson, Isaiah Kennell, and Riley Richard chipped in with four points a piece.
In the 59-43 loss at PCHS on Wednesday, Dankert led the team with 14 points and four rebounds, Smith had 12 points and three assists, and Cody had 10 points and nine rebounds.
In the 78-63 loss to MDI on Thursday, Smith poured in 28 points and grabbed six rebounds; Harmon-Weeks had nine points, six rebounds, five steals, and four assists; Dankert had 10 points; and Cody had seven points and five rebounds.
Coach Dave Carey’s team travels to 3-6 MDI on Wednesday and will be back at home against 6-3 Caribou on Saturday for a 4:30 tip.
Photo taken by Holly Ly ’15. Click here to see more of her excellent work from the MDI game.
Wrestlers proving that they belong among Class B’s best
Coach Luis Ayala’s wrestling team outlasted defending Class B state champion Camden Hills and eight other teams to emerge victorious at Foxcroft Academy on Saturday. Ten Ponies reached the finals and six won their brackets at the 10-team meet, which also included Washington Academy, Mattanawcook Academy, Calais, PCHS, PVHS, Bucksport, Caribou, and Woodland.
Antonio Ayala was champion at 120, Conner Johnson emerged from a very tough 132-pound bracket for his first high school tournament win, Brooks Law took care of business at 152, Billy Brock won at 170, Brandon Brock won at 182, and Conner Holmes became a first-time tournament winner when he defeated Camden Hills’ Bryan Clement (avenging a loss earlier this season) in the 285-pound final. Eli Olson came up just short at 126, but not before upsetting state champion Nick Hallowell of Calais.
The Ponies also swept Dexter, PVHS, and PCHS in Guilford on Wednesday. The highlight of the evening came when 195-pound Michael Pendriss upset Matt Mower, a state champion from Dexter.
“Michael has never beaten him before,” said Coach Ayala. “He has seen him since youth wrestling, middle school wrestling, and last year at PVCs. Michael has come a long way. He has worked hard at practice and improved his skills throughout the years. The match was intense from start to finish. Nobody was giving an inch. The first period ended at 0-0. Michael chose bottom and was able to escape for a 1-0 lead going into the third period. Michael knew he had keep him down the next two minutes to win, and that’s exactly what he did. He rode him out and countered everything he was doing for a 1-0 win. Those are the moments as a coach that you love. Seeing a kid believe in himself and believing in what you are telling him. Then he goes out on the mat and executes the game plan. After that match the entire team was just so pumped up that they went out the rest of the night and dominated the meet.”
The Ponies will compete at Mattanawcook Academy on Wednesday and at rival Ellsworth on Saturday.
Photo taken by Elizabeth Rumery ’16 at Saturday’s home meet (more coming later this week).
Swimming teams sweep Presque Isle and Caribou
Both the Foxcroft Academy boys’ and girls’ swimming teams cruised to victories over Presque Isle and Caribou at a three-team meet in Caribou on Saturday. The boys outpaced Presque Isle 39-22 and Caribou 41-32 while the girls defeated Presque Isle 77-40 and Caribou 78-45.
Clay Carroll, who became an Eagle Scout last week, led the boys with a win in the 100-yard backstroke while Zachary Johnson, Luiz Lyu, Hunter Giacomuzzi, and Dexter Canning won the 200-yard freestyle relay.
For the girls’ side, Avery Carroll won the 200-yard freestyle and the 100-yard butterfly, Julia Annis won the 200-yard IM and the 100-yard breaststroke, Jenna Clukey won the 50-yard freestyle and the 100-yard backstroke, and Jil Annis won the 100-yard freestyle. Carroll, Julia Annis, Clukey, and Jil Annis won the 200-yard medley relay, and Carroll, Jil Annis, Chloe Waugh, and Julia Annis won the 200-yard freestyle relay.
Coach Jody Annis’s swimmers will next compete in Ellsworth on January 23.
Photo of Clay Carroll was taken by Jing Guo ’16 earlier this season.
Track team continues steady improvement in season’s third meet
The Foxcroft Academy boys’ indoor track team scored 28 points to finish fourth at the season’s third PVC-Eastern Maine Indoor Track League Meet at New Balance Field House in Orono on Saturday.
Cooper Nelson captured the two-mile run with a time of 10:53.37 (5:10 in the second mile) while teammate Gabe Piquette took fifth in the event. Pete Boyer won the shot put with a throw of 42-11.25, a foot better than his previous season best; Paul Birtwistle finished third in the 800-meter run; and Justin Diamond and Jason Eubanks took fourth and fifth in the 200-meter dash. Nelson, Nathnael Feleke, Peter Xue, and Piquette placed third in the 4×800 meter relay.
The girls’ team scored 17 points to finish in fifth place. Fern Morrison accounted for eight of the points with a wire-to-wire win in the 800-meter run, Desirae Brawn captured six points with a runner-up showing in the shot put, and Virginia Macomber and Anna Sedlackova earned points with fourth- and fifth-place finishes in the mile run.
“A lot of credit is due to the athletes that lead the team, but sometimes it overshadows many of the good things happening elsewhere on the team,” said Coach Graham Pearsall. “We had some very significant personal improvements this weekend–including Virginia Macomber’s 21-second drop in the mile; Ethan Poland, Jordan Thomas, and Taylor Smith cutting 15, 10, and nine seconds, respectively, off their 800-meter times; Blaine Robinson shaving a significant two seconds off his previous best in the 200-meter over the last two weeks; and our trio of girl shot putters–Emily Brawn, Sam Higgins, and Desirae Brawn–improving by 19, 11, and five inches, respectively.”
The track team will be back in action at UMaine on Saturday at 4 pm.
Ponies come up just short against very good Dexter squad
The girls’ basketball team dropped a tough 36-33 contest to 10-2 Dexter at Foxcroft Academy on Tuesday and was overwhelmed by 10-1 Presque Isle on the road Saturday.
Coach Blake Smith’s young team played inspired basketball in jumping out to a 10-0 lead early in the first quarter against the Tigers, but the veteran Dexter squad weathered the storm and crawled back into the game behind an impressive performance from center Megan Peach, who finished with 16 points, 13 rebounds, and five blocks.
Abby Simpson led the Ponies in scoring with nine points and also collected seven rebounds and three assists. Madison Chadbourne had eight points and 11 rebounds, Grace Bickford had four points and 10 rebounds, and Liz Richard and Abbi Bourget scored six points each. (For a more-detailed recap of this game, check out Marc Calnan’s article on the Eastern Maine Sports blog.)
Bickford (12 points) and Richard (11 points) were the leading Pony scorers in the 85-34 loss at Presque Isle on Saturday.
The Ponies, who are now 2-9, will host MDI Tuesday at 7 pm and Caribou Saturday at 1:30.
Photo taken by Daniil Grishko ’16. Click here to see more of his great work from the Dexter game.
Cheerleaders open competition circuit in Ellsworth
The Foxcroft Academy cheerleading team finished eighth at the Big East Competition in Ellsworth on Saturday. “The girls hit a solid routine with great energy,” said Chelsey Curtis, who coaches the team along with Shari Sage. “I am very impressed and proud of them.”
The Ponies, who are hoping to earn a berth in the state meet on February 7, will compete in the PVC tournament at MDI on Saturday and in the Regionals at the Cross Insurance Center in Bangor on January 24.
Photo taken by Daniil Grishko ’16 at the Dexter basketball game.