The Monmouth girls basketball team has seen this script before.

The Mustangs — the defending Class C champions — enter the playoffs as the No. 2 seed after finishing the regular season with a 17-1 record. That record is even better than the 15-3 record they posted during the regular season a year ago. They also won the Mountain Valley Conference championship. And Monmouth is hitting those marks with nearly the same roster as a season ago.

“I think this year’s team — as opposed to last year’s team — is just more consistent,” Monmouth head coach Scott Wing said. “We’re more confident in what we’re doing, and I think a lot of that comes down to being battle-tested. I think the kids just have a different type of confidence now. We expect to win every time we step on the court.”

The success certainly hasn’t come without its share of hurdles as far as opponents. That’s especially true when it comes to Boothbay, the No. 1 seed who enters the tournament with an 18-0 regular-season record.

The Mustangs, however, gave the Seahawks their first blemish of the season, beating Boothbay 47-41 in the MVC title game. Boothbay boasts a rare combination of size and speed not often seen at the Class C level, particularly from 6-foot forward Page Brown and 6-1 forward Faith Blethen.

Where Monmouth may have the advantage over Boothbay, Wing said, is with depth.


“They’re very good, and they’re very big,” Wing said. “The advantage that we have over them is that when we play them, I’ll play nine or 10 kids. They play six. We love to run just as much as anybody does. When you get that game going up and down the court, it becomes a tiring thing, eventually.”

The tournament is anything but a two-team race, however. Richmond — in its second season in Class C — finished the regular season with a 13-5 record and already has a jump on postseason play after beating Waynflete 49-25 in a prelim game last week. The Bobcats have been led by the inside play of senior forward Sydney Tilton. Richmond enters as the No. 6 seed and will have an early test in No. 3 Old Orchard Beach. The Bobcats and Seagulls did not meet during the regular season, and Old Orchard has caught same late season fire, winning the last seven straight games. That includes a 50-38 victory over No. 14 Winthrop in a prelim game last week.

The most interesting matchup — and what has the potential to be one of the better games of the tournament so far — may be when No. 12 Mt. Abram meets No. 4 Madison for a 7 p.m. tip-off Tuesday at the Augusta Civic Center. The Roadrunners and Bulldogs are no strangers to each other. In fact, Mt. Abram (11-8) beat Madison (16-3) by a score of 57-51 on the road in the only regular-season matchup between the schools on Jan. 29.

On that night, the Roadrunners were led offensively by their two best players, guard Lindsay Huff and forward Megan Sorel.

“Sorel and Huff, they had 18 points a piece,” Mt. Abram head coach Larry Donald said. “That was probably their best games each.”

Donald described his team as a scrappy group. While not very big, they play tough defensively. Numbers have also hurt the Roadrunners.


“I’m down to seven or eight girls now,” Donald said. “It’s been tough, but they’ve got a lot of heart.”

It will be no easy feat to beat the Bulldogs again. With a strong contingent of players that returned from last year’s group — which includes senior guard Sydney LeBlanc — the Bulldogs have been on a recent hot streak, winning their last four games in a row, including a 54-27 win over No. 13 Carrabec last week in a prelim game.

But Donald said his players are looking forward to the rematch.

“We’re not going in like we’d be facing Boothbay or Monmouth, a little intimidated,” Donald said. “They know we’ve got to play again, and have a good game again. It should be a game. It shouldn’t be a blowout either way.”

Dave Dyer — 621-5640

[email protected]

Twitter: @Dave_Dyer

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