There are just two local teams playing in the new Class A realignment this year. Both are hoping to challenge for playoff spots.

Mt. Blue is in A North, while Leavitt is playing in A South.

The Cougars went 11-7 last year before losing in the Eastern A quarterfinals to Edward Little. Mt. Blue is the highest-seeded team from Eastern A in the new A North other than the defending state champs from Lawrence, which were seeded second at 17-1.

Mt. Blue returns five players from last year. The four seniors are Emilee Eustis, Eryn Doiron, MacKenzie Harris and Caitlin Kane. Junior Leah St. Laurent also returns. The Cougars graduated the heart of its inside game and some depth off the bench but still have a strong senior group to lead the way.

Doiron and Kane were the top two leading scorers and catalysts for the Cougars last year. Harris was a presence in the post while Eustis contributed in the backcourt.

“We have four returning players who saw a lot of varsity time last year and have one season of a new system under their belt now,” Mt. Blue coach Gavin Kane said. “This is a very dedicated senior group, who play the game the right way and will provide leadership to our less experienced players. With the reclassification, we will have a very different game schedule from a year ago, but we look forward to the new challenges ahead of us.”

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Mt. Blue’s competition in Class A North will include the defending champs from Lawrence. The Bulldogs return standout center Nia Irving and guard Dominique Lewis. The A North field also includes Skowhegan, Brewer, Cony, Hampden, Messalonskee, Camden, Nokomis Gardiner, Oceanside, Erskine and Medomak.

Hampden and Messalonskee were both playoff teams in Northern A last year. Gardiner, Camden, Oceanside, Nokomis and Medomak all made the tourney last winter in Northern B. Gardiner and Camden each reached the semifinals.

In A South, Leavitt missed the playoffs last year at 7-11, but the Hornets hope to get a little closer to the tourney berth this year.

Leavitt is still young with just one senior. Chantel Eells is a veteran post player and leader for the Hornets. Leavitt has a more seasoned junior class that includes Allie Belaire, Miranda Coombs, Carlee Long, Molly McCormick and Shannon O’Malley. The Hornets hope to improve on last year and earn a few more wins.

“We have gone from a young team with no seniors to a team with one senior,” Leavitt coach Dave Gerrish said. “Our goal is to keep moving forward and improve as the season progresses.”

The rest of A South includes Brunswick, Mt. Ararat, Biddeford, Marshwood, Westbrook, Falmouth, Kennebunk, Greely, York, Morse, Fryeburg and Cape Elizabeth.

Brunswick and Mt. Ararat were among the playoff teams in Northern A last year while Falmouth was sixth in Southern A last year. Teams like Greely and York have been traditional powers in Southern B, while Cape Elizabeth reached the semifinals last year.


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