AUGUSTA, Maine — When Mountain Valley Conference rival Dirigo High School of Dixfield was announced as the Class C cheering state runner-up Saturday, the Lisbon Greyhounds couldn’t predict who had defeated the Cougars.
Certainly it wouldn’t be them, fourth-place finishers at the Western Maine Class C championships two weeks earlier.
So it was more than a modest surprise when the Greyhounds heard their name called, as Lisbon won its first-ever state title in the sport in a tightly contested competition at the Augusta Civic Center.
“This is amazing,” said Lisbon coach Nicole Adams. “Obviously I did not know who was first. This is very exciting.”
The Greyhounds finished with 119.3 points to become the first Western Maine team to win the Class C state crown since Saint Dominic of Auburn won it all in 2009.
Dirigo finished with 118.1 points and Madison was next with 117.8 as Western Maine schools swept the top three places.
Orono, which finished fourth at the Eastern C regional, was the top Eastern Maine team and fourth overall at states with 117.5 points, followed by Bucksport (115.4), Monmouth Academy (113.7), Houlton (110.8) and Eastern C champion Dexter (107.2).
Rounding out the 12-team field were 2014 state champion Central of Corinth (106.4), Mountain Valley of Rumford (104.7), Mattanawcook Academy of Lincoln (100.5) and Sacopee Valley of South Hiram (88.4).
Like its rival programs, Lisbon had to rely on only intermittent practices since competing in the regionals to prepare for states, with snow days eliminating some opportunities.
“This is amazing with the lack of practices we’ve had,” said Adams, whose team finished second at last year’s state meet. “We were able to have three or four practices, but we had to juggle them with some of the basketball games that were rescheduled. I’m sure most of the teams had to do that.”
But after finishing behind Dirigo, Madison and Monmouth Academy at regionals, the Greyhounds took to the mat at an under-the-radar midway point of the state meet — during which Class C and Class B teams alternated.
“We had nothing to lose, so we said to just have fun,” said Adams. “Our goal was to beat what we did at regionals and we beat our score.”
The Greyhounds totaled 117.8 points at the Western C competition.
Lisbon bettered that score at states with a clean display of tumbling and stunts, but Adams suggested the difference between victory and a second straight second-place finish may have been a more subtle aspect of the routine.
“The girls sold it with their facials, the facials were there today,” said Adams.
Team members for the Greyhounds are Abby Curtis, Savannah Czechalski, Erin Davenport, Sydney Douglass, Loren Grant, Alyssa Hall, Emma Houle, Taylor Martin, Alexis McBride, Kaylan Pacheco, Kayla Roberts, Nikki Rodriguez, Molly Ryder, Mataia Shane, Melissa Wood and Antigone Woodbury.