Panthers Basketball Achieves Historic Title Sweep
March 19, 2019
For the first time in history, the Thetford Academy boys and girls basketball teams have won state titles in the same year, and celebrating the first title sweep along with TA’s 200th birthday only makes the occasion sweeter.
Saturday’s boys basketball Division III championship saw the No. 3 seed Panthers pull out a thrilling 73-64 victory over No. 1 seed Williamstown. It was a come-from-behind effort, with Jake Colby (22 points), Alex Emerson (20), Eli Dunnet (14), Owen Deffner (10), and Carter Blain (7) contributing the Panthers’ points, while collectively making 21 of 23 from the free throw line. This was Jason Gray’s first state championship as head coach, and the boys’ first since 2004. TA will graduate seniors Tony Pippin, Ethan Steingas, Seth Boyce, Jake, Owen, and Carter this June.
Exactly a week prior, Coach Eric Ward’s girls defeated No. 8 Oxbow 42-36 to take the girls basketball Division III state title—the Panthers’ third win out of six consecutive championship games they have played in the Barre Auditorium. Casey MacVeagh (13 points) and Kiana Johnson (8) led the 20-2 Panthers, who defeated Windsor, last year’s Division III champion, 55-48 in the semifinals. TA will graduate seniors Lily Brown, Abby Berard, and Kiana this June.
(Girls photos courtesy Kelly Smith, boys photo courtesy Deb Metcalf.)