BANGOR – From the opening tip to the final buzzer, the Winslow girls basketball team fought for every rebound and loose ball.

But Presque Isle simply made too many shots, particularly behind the arc, and it was the Wildcats who walked away from Friday’s Class B North quarterfinal with a 53-46 win at the Cross Insurance Center.

No. 6 Winslowfinished 14-6 while No. 3 Presque Isle (16-3) moves on to the semifinals Wednesday.

The Wildcats jumped out to an 8-0 run, and made three of their 10 3-pointers in the quarter to grab a 16-11 lead. Presque Isle continued its hot shooting into the second quarter, led by sophomore Faith Sjoberg – who scored 11 of her game-high 17 points in the half – and went into halftime with a 32-20 lead.

“We have a lot of confidence the whole game to make shots, that’s what we do best,” Sjoberg said. “Especially in this game. We knew we needed to win, and we just went out there and did what we do best.”

“(Presque Isle) came out and they hit the 3’s,” Winslow coach Brenda Beckwith said. “That was something we were most worried about. We did a really great job moving the ball and making our defense move. Once you do that, you’re going to have good things happen. (Presque Isle) did a really nice job, got a big lead on us, and we just decided to go all out (in the second half).”


Presque Isle’s offensive success in the half was exactly what head coach Jeff Hudson had hoped.

“We live by the three and we have to make a lot of threes,” Hudson said. “That’s our game.”

Despite the Wildcats’ offensive success, the Black Raiders continued to scrap, both on defense and on the boards for rebounds. And despite its offensive struggles, Winslow started gaining ground in the third quarter, leading to its best effort of the contest in the fourth. The Black Raiders outscored the Wildcats 13-8, and brought the game to within four points with a minute remaining. Unfortunately for Winslow, it couldn’t get a key basket within that final minute.

“We had a couple kids that just didn’t connect well on shots that they had made earlier,” Beckwith said. “That’s a part of coming into this tournament, coming into this building. You’ve got to be able to hit those shots. It was fun, it was a great battle.”

“We always practice close-game scenarios at the end of games,” Sjoberg added. “We were prepared to just stay calm and do what we could do to extend the game.”

Silver Clukey and Bodhi Littlefield each led the Black Raiders with 14 points each. Forward Grace Smith was also key for Winslow, scoring nine points and adding 10 rebounds. And guard Jenna Veilleux gave the team an added boost in the fourth quarter, scoring six points to help bring the team within a chance of possibly pulling off the win.

The loss snapped a six-game win streak for the Black Raiders, who earned a spot in the quarterfinal after a 56-35 win over Caribou in the preliminary round Tuesday.

Comments are not available on this story.