It has been tough sledding for the Searsport boys to open the 2021 high school basketball season.

The Vikings' first game was a lopsided 83-30 loss to Class B Mount View of Thorndike, and Searsport had another tall task on Thursday, Jan. 21, as it faced the other Class B foe from Waldo County in Belfast.

The Lions also had a tough start to their season, as they dropped close affairs against Oceanside of Rockland 67-62 on Jan. 12 and Medomak Valley of Waldoboro 63-53 on Jan. 19.

Despite Thursday's lopsided court match with the Lions, the Vikings hung tough, but, ultimately, were outmuscled by veteran-laden Belfast 86-53.

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Belfast led 31-14, 51-28 and 70-43 at the quarter breaks.

Belfast and Searsport normally do not play regular-season games. The Lions toil in Class B and Vikings Class C. The squads will play a regional schedule this winter due to the pandemic.

On Thursday, 13 players scored for the Lions, led by Jason Bartlett's 28 points, while Tanner Veilleux tallied 14; Ethan Hall, 10; Chris Kelley and LaDerrick Roberts, five; Chase Sanders, Tommy Walker and Drew Abalon, four; Eamon Goscinski and Steve Friel, three; and Matt LeBlanc, Cole Martin and James Ritter, two.

Belfast sank seven 3-pointers led by Veilleux with three, while Friel, Kelley, Walker and Goscinski netted one.

Josh Wright led the offensive charge for Searsport with 15 points, while Tim Smith and Gage Ellis added 10; Gabe Kneeland, seven; Elias Higgins, five; and Cole Ellis and Sean Paige, two.

The Vikings connected on seven treys — Wright four, Gage Ellis two and Higgins one.

Belfast was 7-of-9 (77 percent) from the foul line, while Searsport finished 13-of-24 (54 percent).