Wednesday, April 16, 2014
The Madison Area Memorial High School boys basketball team got a boost this week with the return of senior forward Austin Kane from a broken hand. Kane scored 13 points and grabbed 12 rebounds in his first game, a 53-37 win over Monmouth.
An all-Mountain Valley Conference player last season, Kane was one of two starters the Bulldogs lost to injury in the preseason. Senior guard Dylan Price missed the first two games of the season, also with a broken hand.
Thursday’s win over Monmouth improved the Bulldogs to 2-5, but with Kane and Price both in the lineup, Madison could make a run back to the Class C West quarterfinals at the Augusta Civic Center.
“I’ve had more fun coaching this year than I have in a long time. It’s been a great bunch of guys. Most coaches have to make something up about adversity to motivate their kids. I didn’t have to contrive anything,” Madison coach Mike Packard said.
The Bulldogs play at rivals Carrabec and Mt. Abram next week, then host Lisbon on Saturday, Jan. 12. Madison is currently ranked seventh in the region. The top five get byes to the regional quarterfinals.
“We have some winnable games, but some losable games, too. We have some tough games ahead of us,” Packard said.
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Valley earned its biggest win of the season on Wednesday, beating defending regional champion Forest Hills 54-53. There’s no rest for the Cavaliers, (6-1) who face another tough opponent on Friday night at Hyde (4-0) in Bath.
Hyde is a strong defensive team. The Phoenix have yet to allow more than 38 points in a game, and their average margin of victory is 26 points.
Senior center Ryan Cassidy is Hyde’s top scoring threat. Cassidy scored 18 points and had 12 rebounds in a recent 49-25 win over Seacoast Christian.
Led by seniors Carrington Miller, Josh West and Seth Malloy, the Cavaliers are the most talented team Hyde will face so far this season. Miller earned a triple double in a 77-63 win over Vinalhaven last month, scoring 30 points with 11 rebounds and 11 steals. West added 24 points in that game, and had his own triple double against Vinalhaven the previous night, with 16 points, 12 boards and 12 steals.
Travis Lazarczyk has worked at the Morning Sentinel and Kennebec Journal since 2000. He covers football, basketball and baseball. Follow him on Twitter at twitter.com/tlazarmaine