BANGOR—The Black Raiders rode roughshod over Lake Region in Friday night, March 2’s Class B State Championship: While a healthy list of Lakers contributed to the South reps’ total take – including standout senior Chandler True, who hashed 12 – Winslow’s defense simply proved overwhelming in the long run.
43-29 the final.
For True, Lake Region had a strong sense, in advance, of what to expect from the Raiders. Lack of preparation, that is, wasn’t the Lakers’ issue vs. Winslow – not surprising, given how ready LRHS tends to be when they take to the court.
Rather, the Lakers suffered some bad luck, missing a few too many shots and giving up a few too many calls.
“We knew what they were about, and their game plan,” True said. “Really we just had an off day. The calls weren’t going our way, and our shots were going in and out. We played our hearts out, but sometimes the ball doesn’t go in the hoop.”
The Raiders outpaced the Lakers in each of the game’s four quarters. Through the first, Winslow put up nine to Lake Region’s six. Brooke Harriman logged LRHS’s only field goal of the stretch, a two; the team’s other four points all came from the line. True earned one of those, and Lauren Jakobs three.
True hashed a pair more frees in the second, but Melissa Bonenfant added the Lakers’ only other points – a lone three. Likewise, the team managed just five in the third, all of them thanks to True, with two twos and one from the line.
Five points per quarter is unlikely to win any team any championship, ever, and the Raiders continued to outstrip Lake Region during the mid-game stretch, putting up 11 in the second and eight in the third. Broghan Gagnon with two, Silver Clukey with eight, Paige Trask with two and Haley Ward with four and Bodhi Littlefield with one combined for Winslow’s output in those 16 minutes.
“Winslow played really great defense,” True said. “I think coming out we were just stuck, and overthinking everything. All of our shots were literally going in and coming out, so that affected us mentally a lot.”
Importantly, Jakobs – one of several capable Lakers scorers – ended up in a bit of foul trouble as the game went on, leaving her with little choice but to check out for a while.
True lamented her teammate and fellow senior’s absence from the action. “Lauren got into foul trouble, and in order to win big games we need her in!”
Among Winslow’s defensive keys in the match was their ability to thwart Lake Region’s outside attempts – LRHS love to shoot the three, and they’re superb at it. The Raiders, though, succeeded at their task, strangling Lake Region beyond the arc and allowing them to sink just one downtowner all evening – Bonenfant’s, in the second. True, meanwhile, went 0-5 from outside, Jakobs 0-1, Rachel Shanks 0-3 and Shauna Hancock 0-6.
For their part, Winslow didn’t exactly set fire to the three-point line, but they nevertheless hit a far higher percentage of their tries than LRHS. Specifically, the Raiders went 4-11, with Clukey notching two of five, Ward one of two and Madison Roy one of two.
“Really, they made their three-point shots,” True said, “and we couldn’t put them in.”
True added that Winslow also caught some desirable breaks in the lane. “When they drove, they got a lot of foul calls that we didn’t,” she said. “They were able to get to the line a lot.”
The Raiders picked up 19 points from the line on 32 shots. Lake Region tallied a mere eight frees on 13 attempts.
In the fourth, LRHS found something of a groove, and more closely matched the Raiders. Jakobs, back in the fray now, hit a pair of twos, as did True; Hancock added five points. Alas, Winslow stepped to the line over and over in those waning minutes, scoring 13 of their 15 on frees.
As mentioned, True finished with 12. Jakobs, despite her hiatus from the court, kicked in seven. Hancock finished with five, Bonenfant three and Harriman two.
Lake Region finishes the year at 16-5. The Lakers entered the tournament ranked fourth in B South. They dispatched No. 5 Oak Hill, No. 1 G-NG, and No. 3 Freeport en route to their contest with the Raiders, the six-seed out of B North. The Lakers have been to the Championship bout seven times since 2006; they claimed the crown in 2014; it’s the Raiders’ first gold ball since 2005.
“Even though we lost, we still are so thankful to have played in the State Final,” True said. “That experience alone is something we’ve all never had and it was great. Our community has been so supportive towards us as well! No one thought we would get there, and I think we even surprised ourselves this season!”
Adam Birt can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @CurrentSportsME.
The Lakers pose together during a reception held in their honor following their appearance in last Friday’s Class B State Final. Consultant to the team Thomas Noble holds their plaque.
Photo courtesy of Kevin Murphy, via Chandler True.
Lakers leaders (from left) Rachel Shanks, Aisley Sturk, Chandler True and Lauren Jakobs accept their 2017-2018 Class B Runners-up Plaque.
Photo courtesy of Kevin Murphy, via Chandler True.