AUGUSTA — The team roster lists Sage Fortin at 5-foot-5. Her coach says she’s 5-3. Fortin herself says she’s 5-2.

No matter her height, the point guard came up big — on two occasions — for Cony on Friday.

Fortin netted 15 points and added seven rebounds and four fourth-quarter steals as the third-seeded Rams ousted No. 6 Skowhegan 55-44 in the Class A girls basketball quarterfinals at the Augusta Civic Center.

Cony, which won its first playoff game at the Civic Center since 2014, will face either No. 2 Lawrence in the semifinals at 2 p.m. on Wednesday.

Cony led 25-19 at halftime but stretched the lead to 40-23 in the third as Fortin drained three 3-pointers, the second from near NBA length. A third triple was part of a 9-0 run midway through the period.

When not connecting from downtown, the senior was grabbing rebounds left and right, something usually expected of players far taller.


“I’m 5-2, so rebounding for me is kind of a surprise myself when I get the ball,” Fortin said. “But I try to get in there even though there’s a lot of bigs. I was open, so I shot the 3s and I thought it was best for the team that we needed it at that moment.”

Rams coach John Dennett noted that since rebounding is not the Rams’ strength, they need contributions from everybody.


“We try to get our perimeter girls to try crash the boards a lot, and (Fortin) does it really well,” said Dennett, who admitted to adding a few inches to Fortin’s height on the roster. (“I had him bump it a little,” Fortin said.)

Skowhegan clawed back into the game and cut the deficit to 49-44 with 2 minutes, 22 seconds left in the game as senior guard Aryana Lewis scored six of her 10 points in the quarter. But along came Fortin, again: She made four steals and was 4-for-4 from the free throw line down the stretch to help seal the win.

“I think we had to settle down because when they threw the ball at us, we were a little frazzled,” Fortin said. “We had to cam down and find our groove again.”


Added Dennett: “For some reason, they get a little more panicky when we get up later in the game, so we’ll keep working at it.”

Abby Morrill led the Rams with 16 points to go with five rebounds and four steals. Morgan Cunningham added 12 points.

Allie Frey scored 11 points and Lewis 10 for Skowehegan, which won the Class A state title last season but had to overcome the losses of Miss Basketball Jaycie Christopher to graduation and senior forward Callaway LePage to an injury suffered during field hockey season.

“I liked the way our team battled today,” River Hawks coach Mike LeBlanc said. “We have a lot of juniors; we’re still young, especially losing what we lost form last year. I’m very proud of the way they came in and battled. We had a couple letdowns in the first half defensively, but other than that we played very well and we shot the ball well.”

Then there’s Cony’s little matter of ending a nine-year victory drought at the Civic Center; the Rams’ last playoff win at their home away from home was a 67-35 triumph over Brunswick in the Class A North quarters on Feb. 14, 2014.

Cony head girls basketball coach John Dennett speaks with his team during a Class A North girls basketball quarterfinal game Friday at the Augusta Civic Center. Joe Phelan/Kennebec Journal

“It feels great,” Dennett said. My daughter (Alyssah Dennett) is my assistant and she was on that 2014 team. I’m happy for the girls, I’m happy for the program; they deserve everything they get.”

Cony led 10-9 after one quarter despite five points and four rebounds by Skowhegan’s Lewis. The Rams stretched the lead to 24-19 at the half thanks to Morrill’s seven points and a stringent defense that hauled down nine rebounds, including three apiece from Fortin and Kylie Quinn. Skowhegan also had nine rebounds in the frame, three by Natalie Cooke.

Cony swept the regular-season series by scores of 61-48 and 63-46.

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