Bangor High School's Kaylee True-Magee heads for the basket at the Cross Insurance Arena in Portland on Wednesday during the girls' Class AA North basketball semifinals. Credit: Troy R. Bennett | BDN

Deering High School came into Wednesday afternoon’s Class AA North girls’ semifinal round matchup against Bangor High School with the seventh seed and a losing record. But the Portland team pulled the upset, jumping out to an early lead and hanging on for a 34-17 win and a trip to the regional final.

Credit: Troy R. Bennett | BDN

The win continued something of a Cinderella run for Deering, which entered the tourney with a 4-14 record, but knocked off No. 2 Windham High School, 41-26, in the quarterfinals.

In a battle of Rams, Bangor got sparks from Libby Fleming and Sarah Hollis, who scored five points each. But in a game where offense was hard to come by for both teams, the now 6-14 Deering was able to ride star senior Delaney Haines and her 15 points all the way to victory.

“We didn’t have our best game today,” said Bangor coach Joe Nelson. “I thought Deering played well. They were very patient on offense. They had a very effective zone defense that made us stay a little stationary, and then we hurried our shots a little bit.”

Deering teammate Victoria Garland added another seven points, while Mandy Mastropasqua added another six for the purple.

The Deering girls missed the tournament last season, but reached the Class AA North final in 2017, losing to Oxford Hills Comprehensive High School. They could face the Vikings again this year if the No. 1 Oxford Hills also wins its semifinal game Wednesday.

With the loss, Bangor, which was seeking its first regional final berth since 2015, finishes its season with a 12-8 record.

Credit: Troy R. Bennett | BDN
Credit: Troy R. Bennett | BDN
Credit: Troy R. Bennett | BDN

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Seth Koenig

Seth has nearly a decade of professional journalism experience and writes about the greater Portland region.