WINSLOW — The Winslow boys hockey team is vastly improved from the previous two seasons.

The Black Raiders are quicker, stronger and a even a little deeper than what they’ve been.

But, as they showed Saturday night in a tough 4-3 loss to John Bapst, at Sukee Arena, finishing games is still a work in progress.

The Crusaders (1-1-0) scored three third-period goals to erase a 2-1 deficit and sank the Raiders 4-3 in an Eastern B game.

“It’s tough,” said Winslow first-year coach Andy Dube. “They had a deeper bench and our (defensemen) just got worn down in the end. Had we popped a few more in early, it would’ve been a different game. But it’s a long season and we will learn from this.”

Jacob Trask scored two goals and an assist for Winslow (1-1-0), which led 1-0 and 2-1 before the Crusaders rallied late. Alex Berard had a goal and two assists for the Raiders as well.

Hunter Pate scored two goals to lead John Bapst. His second came with 7 minutes, 52 seconds left in the third period and proved to be the game-winner.

“We played well in the third period,” said John Bapst coach Gene Fadrigon, whose team reached the Eastern B title game last season. “We caught a few breaks to get back in the game. Winslow gave us everything they had. They gave us more than what we wanted.”

Matt Spear scored a goal and an assist and Jonathan Cheff had a goal and two assists for the Crusaders.

Spear tied the game just 50 seconds into the third with a power play goal. Then, with 11:12 left in regulation, John Bapst went ahead for good Cheff banged home a loose puck from in front of the net.

Pate made it 4-2 when he beat Winslow goalie Andrew Beals with a low shot to the near post a little more than three minutes later.

Trask pulled Winslow to within 4-3 when he buried a shot from the right point with 5:10 left.

“We were talking about shooting low so that is what I did,” he said. “It just wasn’t enough. We played well but we didn’t finish.”

Both teams came out strong and generated ample scoring chances, but it would be Winslow that grabbed the early lead.

Berard took a pass from David Selwood at the offensive blue line and skated down to the left faceoff circle. With Bapst defenseman Ethan Handley late to arrive, Berard had a clean shooting lane to the net, and he made the most of it. The junior forward ripped the puck past Crusaders goalie Sam Lander to the stick side with 4:37 left in the first period.

John Bapst had several opportunities to tie the game, particularly in the final two minutes of the period when it had a five-on-three power play for 1:32.

However, Beals stood tall and thwarted a few shots to keep it a 1-0 game.

The Crusaders pulled even just 14 seconds into the second period when Pate took a cross-ice pass from Spear and beat Beals with a high shot to the near post from inside the left faceoff circle.

“We played hard,” Dube said. “We had a lot of chances. We just couldn’t get a few more in.”

GIRLS BASKETBALL

MCI 44, BELFAST 37: Brianna Losee had 23 points as Huskies beat the Lions in a Kennebec Valley Athletic Conference Class B game.

Ashley Altobn had 13 points for MCI (1-3), while Cassie Miller scored three points and had 14 rebounds and two blocks.

Belfast (0-4) was led by Ashley Littlefield with 13 points.

Boys basketball

MARANACOOK 87, NOKOMIS 81: Cam Brochu had 23 points, 16 rebounds and five steals as the Black Bears beat the Warriors in a KVAC B game in Readfield.

Taylor Wilbur added 30 points, including five 3-pointers for Maranacook (3-1). Caleb Jackson chipped in with 14, including four 3-pointers.

Jake Winslow had 33 points and Andrew Cartwright had 32 for Nokomis (0-3).

COLLEGE WOMEN’S BASKETBALL

WENTWORTH 66, UM-FARMINGTON 61: Rachael Camara scored 19 points as the Leopards beat the Beavers in a non-conference game in Boston.

Kendra Kerr added 19 points for WIT (3-5), while Carly Rogers had 11 points and 15 rebounds.

Lindsay Ranquist had 19 points, while Kennadi Grover had 14 points. Holly Oliver chipped in 11 points, 12 rebounds and six assists.

Also Saturday: Madison graduate Dylan Price had 10 points in the Maine Maritime Academy men’s basketball team’s 74-58 loss to Green Mountain College in Poultney, Vt. . . . Skowhegan graduate Cheyenne Malloy scored 17 points as the MMA women’s basketball team beat Green Mountain 87-34 in Poultney, Vt. . . . Cony graduate and St. Joseph’s College senior Mackenzie Dufour scored 15 points and had three assists in a 69-57 win against Framingham State.

Bill Stewart — 621-5640[email protected]Twitter: @billstewartkj