After realizing strong success during the preseason, and gaining important confidence in the process, the Belfast girls basketball squad carried that solid play into the regular season with an impressive all-around home-opening 43-25 victory over Maine Central Institute of Pittsfield Friday night, Dec. 7.

The Lions (1-0) received contributions from several players to help solidify a victory in first-year coach Stan Sturgis' first official game.

BAHS used strong defense, something coach Sturgis said his club would focus on this season, in the early going Friday night against the Huskies to grab the momentum. And the hosts never relinquished it.

Belfast led 13-5, 24-11 and 30-19 at the quarter breaks.

Keying the hosts were Lexi Nelligan (16 points, 6 rebounds), Katrina Lapham (11 points, 4 assists, 4 steals), Courtney Drinkwater (2 points, 5 rebounds, 2 assists, 8 steals), McKenzie Thibodeau (10 points, 3 rebounds, steal, blocked shot), Ashley Littlefield (2 points, 3 rebounds, assist, 4 steals) and Brianna Flagg (2 points, rebounds). The Lions netted 7-of-21 foul shots (33 percent).

For the Huskies, Hannah Emery tallied seven points; Rheanna Lawn, six; Kat Smedberg, five; Katie Cronkite, four; Ashley Alton, two; and Cassie Miller, one. MCI made 10-of-16 free throws (63 percent).

Click for photos from the MCI at Belfast varsity game.

Click for photos from the MCI at Belfast jayvee game.

Courier Publications sports staff can be reached by phone at 207-594-4401 or by email at sports@courierpublicationsllc.com.