Unified basketball teams Presque Isle and Houlton play first match of the season

1 year ago

PRESQUE ISLE, Maine — The Presque Isle Unified Basketball team held its first home game and won against Houlton with a final score of 78-55.

The Presque Isle Wildcats Unified players couldn’t contain their excitement to play their first match, Presque Isle Coach Carl Michaud said.

The game tipped off Feb. 28 at the Presque Isle High School gym. Seven players were there for the Wildcats, with Ryley Giliam and Elijah Morningstar absent from the game.

Each of the two halves were played in 20 minutes to give everyone an opportunity to score.

Presque Isle came out strong in the first half with 16 points scored by Destiny Theriault and 14 points netted by Rylee Brown. Braydon Abbott contributing 6 points and Logan Smith draining a single basket.

For the Houlton Shires, Robert Suitter put up 12 points and Ethan Casale contributed 10 points. Mallory Woodie put away 4 points and Charles Clark sank the only 3-pointer of the game for Houlton.

Houlton Shire Charles Clark (middle) attempts a shot at the basket as Presque Isle defenders move in to block during the Unified Basketball game in Presque Isle on Feb. 28. (Paul Bagnall | The Star-Herald)

The halftime show had Houlton players dance to a requested favorite, “Cotton Eye Joe,” with a few Presque Isle players joining in.

In the second half, Presque Isle’s Theriault scored 18 points with Brown netting 12 points. Abbott contributed 10. For the Shires, Casale put up 12 points with Suttier following through at 10 points. Woodie and Clark both scored a single basket for the Unified Houlton team.

“The first game was awesome. It was beyond my expectations with how the players interacted with each other and how they played,” Coach Carl Michaud said.

There will be four more games in the Unified Basketball league. Caribou, Presque Isle and Houlton are northern Maine’s only Unified teams so far.

Michaud hopes the team will grow over time and wants to see around 25 players fill jerseys for Presque Isle as Unified Basketball gains more traction in Maine.