AUGUSTA — When each was in sixth grade, Patricia Lessard and Caitlin Logston moved to Jackman, Lessard from Canada and Logston from Arizona.

“Kind of a melting pot. We’re glad they moved here,” Forest Hills girls basketball coach Anthony Amero said.

Throughout the week in the Class D South girls basketball tournament, Logston and Lessard have led the Tigers to a pair of wins. Saturday afternoon, Forest Hills will face Vinalhaven in the regional championship game. If the Tigers advance to their first state championship game since 2014, the senior duo will play a huge part.

In two regional tournament games, Logston and Lessard have combined to score 66 of the Tigers’ 75 points (88 percent). In a 42-40 quarterfinal win over Pine Tree Academy, the 5-foot-8 Logston scored 25 and the 5-6 Lessard contributed 15. In Thursday’s 33-29 win over defending state champion Rangeley, Logston had 17 points, while Lessard added 9.

“Those two have just been automatic. They’re strong. They go up hard. They’ve got nice post moves. They do a little up and under, drop step baseline. Their skill sets have really improved over the four years. Now it’s starting to shine for them. They’re great kids,” Amero said.

Amero is the longtime boys basketball coach at Forest Hills, and didn’t take over the girls program until the end of the regular season when head coach Jill Demanski had to move when her husband was transferred to a border patrol post in Texas. Still, Amero had been an assistant coach with the Tigers. He, Lessard and Logston were familiar with each other.

“He was the assistant coach, so we already knew what he was like. Of course, I miss Jill, our old coach, but I wasn’t scared with Amero. I was glad for him to step up and take over,” Lessard said.

Amero didn’t change anything when he took over the Tigers, but did focus on some fundamentals.

“We’ve definitely found some kinks that we needed to work on throughout the season. He noticed those right off and we’ve been working on them since. It was reversing the ball and post entry passes. We’ve been doing really good with those,” Logston said.

Added Amero: “The biggest thing for me, I really focused on, we’re not going to make foolish fouls. We’re not going to let teams beat us with fouling. Rangeley was averaging 14.2 points per game at the foul line. That’s a big part of their offense. Each round, we’re not going to bail people out. Give up the layup before you give up the foul.”

With Logston and Lessard doing most of the scoring, Amero stressed that the Tigers tournament success is very much a team effort.

“There’s not a selfish kid in that locker room. They stick to the game plan, which is get it to the big girls until somebody takes it away,” Amero said. “People set those screens that don’t get a lot of credit, and that’s not easy to do. They’re not just getting open by themselves.”

Travis Lazarczyk — 861-9242

[email protected]

Twitter: @TLazarczykMTM

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