Basketball: Liberty wins top division at talent-laded MV Rec tourney

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RUMFORD – The annual Mountain Valley Rec basketball tournament raised $3,600 for the Mountain Valley High School Sports Boosters, up from $3,000 last year. Organizer Ed Paterson was very pleased with the team and fan turnout.

Twenty-seven games and three shooting contests were held over three days. The ‘A’ division was very competitive with eight teams involved. Six teams participated in the ‘B’ bracket. Representing the locals in the ‘B’ division were Hillside Builders (Dave Hodgkins, owner and captain). In the ‘A’ division, of area interest were Liberty Mutual (Scot New captain), Laid Back Installers (Rodney Canwell owner, Brian Canwell captain), Minutemen (Justin Staires captain) and Wave Squad (Josh Shaw of Mexico and University of Maine-Presque Isle captain).

Class Acts, led by Hotel Harris owner Bill Simpson, were attempting to win the ‘A’ division for the third straight year. Among its statewide recruits was local legend Andy Bedard. But the champions were knocked out in the semifinals by a fired up Run ‘N’ Gun team captained by former Valley High and Plymouth State University star Nick Pelotte.

Liberty Mutual won the tournament,  fighting off Laid Back in the semis and Run ‘N’ Gun in the finals. Jon Wallingford, who played at both the University of Maine and Central Maine Community College, was tournament MVP.

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All-tourney recognition went to Wallingford, Andy Shorey Jr. of Laid Back, Matt Clement of Class Acts (a former MVP and this year’s slam dunk contest winner),  Pelotte of Run’N’ Gun and Kaleb Violette of Liberty.

In the ‘B’ division, semifinalists were Hillside Builders, Urban Achievers of Kennebunk (led by Mike Wentworth, cousin of Steve Lapointe), Maine Frameworks of Bath (Brian Wagg captain) and Shooters/Ben Alpren Machine of Auburn (Heath Crocker captain).

Maine Frameworks bested Shooters in the finals. Zach Reed was named MVP. Other all-tourney selections were Dan Coleman, Dave Berry and Dane Pomerleau of Shooters and Adam Leclair of Frameworks. Leclair won the  foul shooting contest, beating Kevin Gallant of Liberty.

Class Acts’ Jon Furbush, Bates College men’s basketball coach, won the 3-point shootout over Kevin Bean of Run’N’ Gun, Josh Albee of Hillside Builders and Owen Jones of Laid Back Installers.

All event and all-tourney winners were presented trophies, gift certificates and t-shirts for their efforts.

Matt and Pam Kaubris of the Boosters, Joe Volkernick of the local access channel, league organizers Mark Cyr and Jennie Hutchins, booster Jeremy Myles and referee coordinator Paul Mingo were essential in making the weekend a success. Other volunteers included Bill Southwick of Walmart, Ryan Palmer of GRCC and students McKenzie Paterson, Delaney Paterson and Ryan Laubauskas. Referees also contributed by accepting a reduced fee and officiating many games. Steve Lapointe, Chris Gorham, Mingo, Eddie Paterson, Mark Pare, Dave Verrier and Jim Ladd led that crew. 

Gift certificate and t-shirt sponsors were Pepsi, Hannaford, Subway, Mountain Valley Variety, Adley Auto, Pine Tree Cellular and Rumford House of Pizza. The tournament is always played on the last weekend in March unless Easter falls on that weekend. The organizers wish to thank Hotel Rumford for its hospitality this year.

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