AUGUSTA — The Madison girls couldn’t blame the officials or a lack of effort. They couldn’t blame injuries, because Waynflete had them beat on that.

There weren’t any glaring reasons why Waynflete handled Madison so easily Tuesday afternoon, other than that the Flyers played very well and Madison did not.

Seventh-seeded Waynflete scored the first six points of the game and never led by less than nine points in the second half in a 56-39 Western C girls basketball quarterfinal victory at the Augusta Civic Center.

“We hustled on defense. We worked hard. I thought every aspect of that was there,” Madison coach Al Veneziano said. “We really did want it. Everything seemed to fall for them. For us, the ball just didn’t roll.”

The second-seeded Bulldogs (15-4) did a nice job defensively on Waynflete star Martha Veroneau, who didn’t make a field goal after the first quarter. But Veroneau still had 20 points on 14-of-16 foul shooting, and 5-foot-6 junior guard Rhiannan Jackson added 22 points and 12 rebounds.

Waynflete (13-7) moved on to face No. 3 Boothbay on Thursday in the semifinals. The Flyers were actually quite short-handed, as three players were in dress clothes and Catherine Veroneau, trying to come back from a knee injury, played limited minutes.

“We’ve got four kids that were in our top eight that are out for the year,” Waynflete coach Brandon Salway said. “So to get to the semis is a huge accomplishment for this group.”

Added Jackson: “We’ve felt really down for a while about how many injuries we’ve had. Since we got some people back, it just feels really good. We’re more united as a team.”

Waynflete, which hit seven 3-pointers in the game, led 6-0 right away on 3s by Jackson and Veroneau. Madison did not score six straight points the entire game.

“We got off to a great start, which is key in here, I think,” Salway said. “Anytime you hit your first few shots, I think the kids are able to relax.”

Waynflete led 13-8 after one quarter and pushed that to 27-14 at halftime. Sam Bruce had 10 of those points for Madison and finished with 19. But the Bulldogs also shot 15 for 60 (25 percent) from the floor, and they did not pass as well as they usually do.

Madison finally got a little momentum early in the third quarter, when Cristie Vicneire drilled a 3-pointer. But that was immediately followed by Veroneau dribbling the length of the floor and passing to Jackson, who made a layup and was fouled for a three-point play.

The closest the Bulldogs got in the second half was 48-39 when Bruce hit a 3-pointer with 1 minute, 8 seconds to play, but Waynflete put the game away at the line. The Flyers made 25 of 37 free throws, just three off the Western C girls record of 28.

“We spend a lot of time practicing them,” Salway said. “Close games, it’s going to come down to layups and foul shots most times.”

Matt DiFilippo — 861-9243

[email protected]


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