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Round-up: Laconia teams saw playoff action

As the winter sports season wraps up, most Laconia teams should be proud of the accomplishments and improvements achieved this season. The boys' basketball team made the playoffs with an 11-7 record after going 5-13 the previous season. The Sachems fell to Mascoma Valley in the second round last week 59-43.

The Golden Eagles of Gilford were the only Lakes Region boys' team to advance past the second round, falling to Berlin in the quarter-finals last Saturday 59-48. Gilford finished the year with a 14-4 record, good for the sixth seed in the NHIAA Division III tournament.

The Winnisquam Bears were the seventh seed in tournament play and also recorded a 14-4 regular season record. The Bears fell to the tenth seeded Farmington in the second round 58-57.


Girls' basketball

The Winnisquam girls' team finished the season winning five of the last seven games to register a 9-9 mark and the 14th seed in the postseason. Their winning ways continued in the first round, beating Raymond 60-52. Unfortunately, Winnisquam ran into the steamroller that was the Campbell Cougars. The Bears were defeated 50-32 in the second round by Campbell.

Campbell continued their championship season beating the Golden Eagles in the quarter-finals 55-47. Gilford finished the year 10-8 in the regular season. The young squad will have the majority of the starters returning next season.

The Sachems had a 12-6 record for the second season in a row. This postseason did not fare as well as last year's quarter-final team. This season's team could not advance past Franklin in the second round, losing 44-35.


Ice hockey

On the Hockey front, Laconia-Winnisquam put together a 7-11 season and earned a playoff berth. The Wolfpack had trouble keeping up with Souhegan, losing the quarter-final matchup 10-0.

The 15-3 Belmont-Gilford earned the third seed in the playoffs and hosted Kennett last Saturday afternoon. The Bulldogs had not won a home playoff game under coach Jay Londer, until Caleb Drouin scored the game winning goal in overtime to beat the Eagles and avenge last season's playoff loss. The Bulldogs took on Souhegan last night in semi-final play at the Everett Arena last night. The result of the game was too late for this section's deadline.

Last Updated on Thursday, 13 March 2014 09:04

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LHS cheer takes 1st in preliminary competition

Laconia High School's varsity cheer team earned entry to the state cheerleading competition after placing first in a preliminary event held on Sunday. Laconia earned 91.5 points out of a possible 110. Trinity (86) came in second, followed by Winnisquam (83). Also competing in the event were teams from Campbell, Bow, Stevens, Franklin, Newfound, Farmington, Prospect Mountain and Berlin. Laconia cheerleaders shown above are: front four girls left to right, Taylor Percy, Kaitlyn Sasseville (middle back), Taylor Avery (middle front) and Gillian Gorse. In the back:Cierra Pinkney, Rachel Lowe, Jackie Foden, Isabel Gorse, Danielle Angers and Peyton Hughes. The state competition will be held at Southern New Hampshire University. (Courtesy photo)

Last Updated on Monday, 10 March 2014 09:40

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21st Francoeur/Babcock Tournament wraps up

The 21st Annual Francoeur/Babcock Memorial Basketball Tournament was held March 5-9 at Gilford Middle School. The winners have been announced following the final round games, played on Sunday.
Lou Athanas defeated Gilford, 26-24, in the junior division final. Leading scorers for Lou Athanas: Camden Kirker – 8 points, Nolin Stevens – 6 and Jacob Mello, 4. Leading Scorers for Gilford: Riley March, 13, Max Bartlett, 3. Sanbornton earned the third place finish, with Gilmanton finishing 4th.
In the senior girls' division final, Gilford defeated Lou Athanas, 30-15. Leading scorers for Gilford: Erin Hart, 12 points, Abby O'Connor, 6, and Shelby Cole, 4. For Lou Athanas: Isabella Daly scored 6, Sydney Ross, 3 and Sophie George, 3. Franklin took third place in the tournament and Belmont ended in fourth place.

In the senior boys' division final, Belmont defeated Gilford (30-20) to force an extra game. In the first game, Belmont's leading scorers were:
Aaron Simonds, 12 points, Nate Sottak, 10. Leading scorers for Gilford: Connor Sullivan, 9, Jonathan Mitchell, 6 and Andrew Flanders, 3.

Belmont again defeated Gilford in the second game of the senior boys' final. Leading scorers for Belmont: Aaron Simonds, 14 points, Keith Landry, 10. Leading scorers for Gilford: Jonathan Mitchell, 11, Connor Sullivan, 8 and Andrew Flanders, 3. In third place in the senior boys' division was Lou Athanas, Sanbornton ended in fourth place.

The Nathan J. Babcock Volunteer Award was presented to Tom Routhier. Denise Soucy Memorial Coaches Award was presented to Rod Roy of the Lou Athanas Senior Boys Team.

Last Updated on Monday, 10 March 2014 09:36

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Bulldogs top Kennett in OT thriller

LACONIA — The Belmont-Gilford Bulldogs were a minute and thirty five away from repeating last year's unfortunate end to a season, until Brogan Hurst blasted a shot from the point that led to a rebound falling onto the stick of Andrew D'Amour. D'Amour buried the puck past the right pad of Kennett goalie Josh Kondrat (41 saves) to even things up at two goals apiece and eventually force a sudden death overtime period. Junior center Caleb Drouin won a face-off four and a half minutes into overtime, tiptoed through traffic and found the tiniest of openings between Kondrat's legs for the first home playoff victory during coach Jay Londer's tenure.

"I got the puck, felt someone slash me, shot five hole and it went in," said Drouin. "I had an overtime goal before in the regular season, but this is my biggest one yet. I didn't want to see the seniors lose tonight." Prior to the game, Londer was unsure how much ice time he was going to give the imposing junior. "Drouin was ill tonight, but when he is on his game he is so big and hard to stop," Londer said.

The Bulldogs were in the same position last season, playing host to Kennett in the quarter-finals. The Eagles took that game, beating the Bulldogs by the score of 6-3.

On Saturday night, Kennett opened the scoring in the second period with a Brad Canavari goal at the 11 minute mark. The Bulldogs responded less than two minutes later by a power play wrist shot from Hurst.

The game remained tied until Canavari tossed the puck toward the net and Dane Rivera redirected the shot just enough for B-G goalie Calvin Davis (23 saves) to lose sight of the puck until it was behind him for a 2-1 Eagles lead.

Kennett had a golden opportunity early in the overtime, but the goalie's best friend made an appearance and helped out Davis. Kennett controlled a face-off to the left of Davis and quickly shoveled a pass to a streaking Canavari who had the open net on the right side. Canavari took a backhanded shot behind Davis across the crease and off the opposite post. The rebound ricocheted out and play went the other way.

"It's great going to the semi's," Londer added. "I told the kids that we haven't accomplished anything at 15-5. We haven't accomplished anything until we win a playoff game."

The Bulldogs will face off against Souhegan at the Everett Arena in Concord on Wednesday at 5 p.m. The teams split the regular season, each team winning their home game.

Last Updated on Monday, 10 March 2014 09:27

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