LEWISTON — Blue Devils don’t cheer for Saints, and Saints most certainly do not applaud the blue and white.

Neither have the time for the Red Eddies.

What is a Red Eddie, anyway?

But Saturday, when for the 12th time in 13 seasons at least one of the three schools bearing those nicknames played in the Class A state final at the Androscoggin Bank Colisee, there were as many people with blue-and-white diplomas yelling and screaming every time a St. Dom’s skater touched the puck as there were those whose cars were decked out in black and white streamers.

And those crazy Eddies? Of course they were in the Saints’ corner.

Rivalries run deep in this community that has been blessed with 46 state titles, but the sense of community pride digs even deeper.

Many of those professing to be among the “impartial” Twin Cities fans in attendance Saturday were quick to point out that it has now been 10 years since one of their Class A schools has hoisted a championship trophy. Perhaps even more unthinkable is the fact that the most recent to do so drapes its hallways in maroon and white during spirit week.

St. Dominic Academy, which has more state hockey titles (24) than any other school, has gone 14 years without. Lewiston, which sits at 20 overall, has run dry since 2002. The Eddies won their only two in 2003 and 2004.

Since then, a parade of schools from Cumberland and York Counties has skated onto the ice at the Colisee — home for many years to all three programs — and skated off with a trophy so many in the Twin Cities believes to be their by birthright.

Cheverus went back to back in 2005-06, while Biddeford hoisted the hardware in 2007 and 2008. All four of those wins came at Lewiston’s expense.

Waterville topped St. Dom’s in 2009. Biddeford made it 3-for-4 in 2010, and the Tigers’ rivals from Saco, Thornton Academy, went back to back on Lewiston and St. Dom’s in 2011 and 2012.

Falmouth etched its name on the trophy for the first time a year ago, and with the resounding “ping” off the post of Jake Grade’s laser in overtime Saturday, added to the trend of two-timing champions with a second consecutive title.

All the while, the majority of the 3,450 fans in attendance, whether wearing blue, maroon or black, joined in unison — even if only silently — in their support of “anyone but Falmouth.”

It’s certainly no slight to the Yachtsmen. They’ve earned everything they’ve achieved, and then some. The foundation of that program has been rock solid, and it has knocked on the door many other times, only to just miss out on the big game.

Now the Yachtsmen are 2-for-2, with six goals for and two against in six-plus periods of hockey.

Collectively, teams from Cumberland and York Counties are 10 for their past 10 against Twin Cities teams in state finals, which is likely why there were so many Devils and Eddies dressed in Saints clothing Saturday. (And why, if Lewiston had been fortunate enough to advance this far, many in black and white would have traded in their halos for horns, at least for one night.)

Yes, there is a rivalry among the teams in the Twin Cities, but there is also a sense of community pride. For one night a year, a black-and-maroon-and-blue-striped sweater is in vogue, and it ultimately makes the community, the schools, and the hockey programs that much stronger.

Now, the slate is clean. Falmouth is the back-to-back defending state champion, and will again wear a target on its back. The maroon, blue and black will mull over what happened this season as they retool this summer. They’ll go back to being rivals, with the ultimate hope that one of them will trade places with the Yachtsmen.

Each school’s fan base will wear its colors proudly. But somewhere, in the back of the bottom drawer, or behind the old shirts in the closet, those black, blue and maroon shirts and jackets will be stashed, just in case.


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