AUGUSTA — Aubrianna Hoose knows Oceanside has plenty to prove following an unbeaten regular season one winter ago.

The Mariners took a big first step in proving any naysayers wrong Tuesday night, starting hot and rolling to a 71-50 win over Cony in a Kennebec Valley Athletic Conference girls basketball game behind a double-double from junior Bailey Breen.

Breen finished with game highs in points (29) and rebounds (11).

“We took preseason really seriously, because we know people weren’t going to think we were the best team again,” said Hoose, who finished with 13 points, one of three Mariners in double-digits. “We have to work for that. It doesn’t come easy. We knew we had to be prepared to come out and prove we’re a better team than we were last year.”

“We just ran into a better team,” Cony coach John Dennett said. “They came out really strong. They were knocking shots down. Bailey Breen is a really good player. (University of Maine head coach) Amy Vachon was here for a reason to watch her.”

Cony head coach John Dennett reacts to a call against Oceanside during a girls basketball game Tuesday in Augusta. Joe Phelan/Kennebec Journal

For long stretches, the game felt nowhere near as close as the scoreboard indicated. At other times, it felt as though the result hinged on a single possession — though after building a 28-9 lead through one quarter, the Mariners (1-0) never let the Rams get any closer than 13 points midway through the second period.


A Morgan Cunningham three followed by a pair of free throws from Morgan Fichthorn brought Cony (1-1) to within 34-21 with 4:06 remaining in the first half, but Oceanside went on an 11-3 run that sent them off into the break with a 45-28 lead.

Breen scored six of her 16 first-half points during the run.

“We have a lot of great players,” Hoose said. “We’re really good at working together, even though we lost three starters (from last year). That made us work even harder.”

“We played well,” Oceanside coach Matt Breen said. “It was a good performance for us to start. We’ve still got some solid players. We’ve got Bailey to build around, and that takes a lot of pressure off everybody else. … I was pleasantly surprised with how well everything seemed to click tonight.”

Oceanside’s Sophia Daggett, left, Cony’s Morgan Fichthorn, center, and Oceanside’s Renee Ripley rebound during a girls basketball game Tuesday in Augusta. Joe Phelan/Kennebec Journal

Renee Ripley added 17 points for Oceanside to go along with nine rebounds.

After outscoring the visitors by a 19-17 count in the second quarter, Cony couldn’t keep pace after halftime. Maci Freeman and Abby Morrill drilled threes in the first two minutes of the third period to make it a 49-34 game, but Oceanside then went on an 18-4 run to put things out of reach.


“We haven’t really gotten into a defensive flow yet,” Dennett said. “We were trying to run some different sets, trying to go to a 1-3-1 to try and keep (Breen) out of the paint. We tried to change it up a little bit, but we’re not very good defensively right now.”

Breen finished with six three-pointers, but it was the point guard Hoose who directed the action on the floor. She pushed the pace throughout, penetrated the lane for buckets or kick-outs to open shooters, and defended the full length of the floor to help generate 24 Cony turnovers.

“(Hoose) sets the tone for us, even in our zone with her quickness and her hands and getting deflections,” Breen said. “She was our other (returning) starter from last year, and we really rely on her and Bailey for their leadership. She did a good job tonight.”

About the only thing Oceanside didn’t like was its fourth quarter. The Mariners mustered only four points in the final period while trying to work on stalling techniques for closing out games later in the season.

Cunningham led Cony with 16 points. Fichthorn chipped in with 10, and Morrill added eight.

Travis Barrett

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