Players to Watch: Jr. F Jeromey Rancourt, Lewiston; Sr. F Kyle Morin, Lewiston; Fr. F Alex Robert, Lewiston; Sr. F Austin Roy, St. Dom’s; Fr. F Reese Farrell, St. Dom’s; Soph. D Gavin Bates, St. Dom’s; Sr. D Ben Steele, Edward Little; Sr. F Liam Benson, Edward Little; Sr. F Trevor DeLaite, Bangor; Jr. G Derek Fournier, Bangor; Sr. F Tyler Johnson, Windham/Westbrook; Sr. F Zack Callahan, Windham/Westbrook; Sr. F Riley Boivon, Cony/Hall-Dale/Monmouth.

Favorite: Lewiston

The Blue Devils have had the target on their back all season, and 18 regular-season games only strengthened their claim as the team to beat. Lewiston started off the season with a bang, out-scoring its first five opponents 42-3 before a bump in the road against Falmouth. The Blue Devils didn’t lose again until the regul-season finale.

The Blue Devils are a deep team, rolling out four forward lines without skipping a beat. Kyle Morin and Jeromey Rancourt are both No. 1 centers, and Lewiston has two of them. Morin, a Travis Roy Award semifinalist, plays with a pair of freshmen, Alex Robert and Sam Frechette, who combined for nearly 50 points.

Lewiston is just as deep on the blue line, and Jacob Strout has emerged as a No. 1 goaltender.

Darkhorse: Bangor


The Rams toiled near the cut-off line for making the playoffs all season, but were able to move up to the No. 4 seed, and a home game in the quarterfinals, by the end of the regular season. A lot of teams probably wish Bangor had been bounced from the postseason, because the Rams have played many teams tough, despite finishing with just a 9-7-2 record.

The team to deliver Lewiston’s second loss: Yes, that would be Bangor. The Rams shut out the Blue Devils (the only goose egg for the favorites) in Bangor, 1-0 in overtime. That was the second time Bangor took Lewiston to OT.

Fournier is able to steal a game in net for the Rams, which he did with 40 saves in the win over Lewiston. DeLaite is a Travis Roy Award semifinalist.

Fun Facts: Lewiston had a lot of blowout wins, but played in five one-goal games (going 4-1) and four overtime games (1-1-2). … The Blue Devils out-scored opponents 106-30. … Steele tallied a Class A leading 27 assists, helping out on nearly half of the Red Eddies’ 60 goals. … Edward Little averaged 3.33 goals per game, a pace that was aided by scoring four goals seven times, including four games in a row in the middle of the season. … St. Dom’s didn’t face a non-playoff team after the New Year, going 6-5-1 in those games. … Farrell and Robert both finished in the top 10 in points in Class A North, despite being freshmen. Farrell led the region with 35 points.

Overview: Despite both St. Dom’s and Bangor playing Lewiston tough, the Blue Devils finished the regular season in a class of their own, with more than 60 Heal points seperating them from the second-place Saints. The Nos. 2-6 seeds in the playoffs were seperated by 25 points. The Saints played their best hockey down the stretch, beating Scarborough, Bangor and Biddeford to end the season. St. Dom’s could very well face crosstown rival EL in the semifinals. The two teams split a pair of regular-season games. A rubber match would take place at Androscoggin Bank Colisee, rather than Norway Savings Bank Arena. The Colisee would also host a potential Lewiston-Bangor semifinal in a rematch of the Blue Devils’ 2-1 overtime win during the regular season. No. 5 Windham/Westbrook (13) and No. 6 Cony/Hall-Dale/Monmouth (12) had the second- and third-most wins, respectively, in the region, but didn’t play the same grueling schedules as the top four. A quarterfinal win by either team would be an upset.

Prediction: Lewiston

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