LTC football features parity in first two weeks

Posted Sept. 14, 2010, at 4:54 p.m.
Last modified Sept. 16, 2010, at 10:29 p.m.

Unpredictability has been the byword of the LTC football world through the first two weeks of the regular season.

Nine of the 12 teams in the Eastern Maine Class C conference already have at least one win, and upsets have been nearly as much the rule through two weekends as they have been the exception.

“I think it’s great to be in the LTC because week to week anything can happen,” said John Bapst coach Dan O’Connell. “It makes you stay on your toes as a coach and as a player, because you’ve got to come out and you’ve got to be prepared and you’ve got to play hard for four quarters because on any given night in this league anybody can beat anybody and it’s as true this year as it’s been since I’ve been in the league. It’s going to be exciting.”

John Bapst, which is seeking to reach the conference championship game for the fourth consecutive season, is one of just three undefeated teams in the LTC, along with Stearns of Millinocket and Calais-Woodland, which pulled of one of the most noteworthy victories of the early schedule with its 36-14 win at defending regional champion Foxcroft Academy last Friday night.

“I think there’s a lot of parity in the league this year,” said Silverados coach Ian Pratt. “I think the teams that have the fewest injuries or have the best depth will be in good shape. From top to bottom there’s not a bad team in the league.”

Six teams — Foxcroft, Maine Central Institute of Pittsfield, Mount View of Thorndike, Old Town and Orono — are 1-1 in the early going, and the competitive nature of the league is expected to continue this weekend with matchups featuring John Bapst at MCI and Mount View at Rockland on Friday night and Orono at Calais-Woodland on Saturday afternoon.

“This is a wide-open league,” said Rockland coach Woody Moore. “There are some teams playing well early, but if you play well on any given night, you’re in the game. It looks like everybody’s down in numbers quite a bit, so you’ve just got to stay healthy and execute.”

Orono to honor Berthiaume

Orono High School will honor longtime boys soccer coach Larry Berthiaume with a brief ceremony at approximately 3:45 p.m. Wednesday before the Red Riots’ home game against Dexter.

Berthiaume died June 5 after a brief battle with pancreatic cancer.

Members of Berthiaume’s family are expected to attend the ceremony, which will be held at the soccer field just in front of a tribute garden dedicated to the veteran coach. Senior players on this year’s team will plant maroon and white mums in the tribute garden in honor of Berthiaume after Wednesday’s game.

Berthiaume coached and taught for 33 years, the last 29 in Orono where he also coached hockey and baseball. Berthiaume also served for many years as a soccer official.

MacPhee to coach at GPCS

Len MacPhee, the longtime former men’s basketball coach at the University of Maine-Farmington, is coming out of retirement this winter to coach the boys varsity basketball team at Greater Portland Christian School.

MacPhee spent 36 years at UMF in numerous posts. He spent 24 years as the men’s basketball coach, posting 322 wins and earning numerous coach of the year awards. He later coached the women’s basketball team for seven years, guiding the Beavers to back-to-back appearances in the NAIA national tournament in 1995 and 1996,

MacPhee also coached baseball for seven seasons and served as athletic director for seven years before retiring from the university in 2001.

MacPhee went on to become pastor of the Rangeley Free Baptist Church, and also coached the Rangeley boys basketball team for five seasons.

MacPhee, a 2002 inductee of the UMF Hall of Fame, has a lifetime coaching record of 528-324.

MacPhee grew up in South Portland, where he was a Bangor Daily News All-Maine basketball third-team player for the Red Riots in 1958.

He went on to play baseball and basketball at the University of Maine, and holds a masters degree in physical education from Springfield College.

MacPhee began his coaching career at age 22 at Maine Central Institute in Pittsfield, and later spent a year as an assistant coach at Springfield before moving on to UMF.

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