The snow hasn’t even melted on their old high school diamond, but two graduates of the Lewiston High School softball program have turned up the heat during the annual trip to Florida with their current teams.

Junior shortstop Katie Morin of the University of New England was named Commonwealth Coast Conference Co-Player of the Week for her exploits from March 12-18.

UNE opponents surely grew weary of watching Morin run the bases. She swung the bat at a 16-for-32 clip for a .500 average on the southern swing, nudging the Nor’easters to a 4-6 mark.

Morin led the team with 11 runs scored. She also knocked in four while drawing four walks and stealing two bases.

Not surprisingly, her best games coincided with UNE victories. Morin was perfect in four at-bats Saturday in a 12-0 whitewashing of Knox. She also went 2-for-4 in triumphs over Kenyon (10-6), Lakeland (12-1) and Medaille (17-7).

Ali Coleman‘s team has fared even better in the Sunshine State. Bowdoin College exploded from the starting block with nine straight victories in Fort Myers prior to its 2-0 loss to Plymouth State on Tuesday.

That’s a quantum leap from last season’s spring break, when the Polar Bears fashioned a 5-11 mark on their way to an 18-22 record for the second straight year.

Coleman has been a central figure in the surge, starting at catcher and designated hitter while frequently hitting clean-up. Among the sophomore’s big days were a 2-for-4 showing with a double in a 5-4 win over Transylvania, 2-for-4 in an 8-1 trouncing of SUNY-New Platz, and 2-for-2 with a pair of RBIs in a 4-0 shutout of the College of Wooster.

Morin isn’t the lone local player shining at UNE. Chelsea Cummings of Oxford is beginning her third year at third base for the Biddeford program. Cummings started five games on the Florida tour, notching three hits and three RBIs.

Former Saints stick with it

The University of Southern Maine men’s lacrosse program hopes to make major strides with a new coach and new philosophy after a 2-10 record in 2006. The Huskies won’t hurt for continuity or camaraderie, thanks in part to four players who have reunited in Gorham after shining for St. Dominic Regional High School.

Three of Southern Maine’s nine returning players and one of its top newcomers honed their lacrosse skills with the Saints. Leading the charge is senior co-captain Mark Bubier of Greene, whose nine goals ranked second on the squad last season.

Sophomore Matt Manson is back after emerging as the Huskies’ leading scorer with seven goals and six assists for 13 points last spring. He’s joined by classmate Dylan Nadeau of Greene, who found the net twice as a freshman.

Blending into the fray for his first college campaign is freshman Alex Pleau of Lewiston.

Matt Soule of Denmark (Fryeburg Academy) and Bubier are two of only four seniors for USM.

Southern Maine kicked off its season Wednesday at Mitchell College in New London, Conn.

Nose for the net

Southern Maine shouldn’t be starved for goals in women’s lacrosse, either.

Ashley Dyer of Harrison (Oxford Hills) has been named a co-captain for the Huskies. Dyer delivered 30 goals and 10 assists in her prolific junior year.

Minot’s Anna Geismar (Hebron Academy) returns, as well, after scoring her first collegiate goal in 2006. USM travels to Curry College in Milton, Mass., today for its season-opener.

USM softball also christens its campaign this afternoon in the warmer surroundings of Fort Myers, Fla. Sophomore outfielder Meghan Ford of Mechanic Falls (Poland) and junior utility player Dawn Ross help provide experience. Two freshmen from Sabattus and Oak Hill, Danielle Potvin and Magan Blais, are new to the team.


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