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Falcon championship teams recognized at State House
AUGUSTA -- It proved to be a time of reflection when the Mountain Valley athletic teams were recognized with sentiments for their successful seasons at the state house earlier this month.
The Falcon Class B state championship football and wrestling teams, along with Christian Durland, were honored before the 125th state legislature. They were invited to sit in the gallery by local state Reps. Sheryl Briggs and Matt Peterson. Briggs proclaimed it to be Mountain Valley day during remarks in the vast chamber.
“We’re in the presence of some elite Maine high school athletes,” said Peterson. “I’m honored to be able to recognize a dynasty in the Mountain Valley High School football team, who won another Class B state championship this past fall -- their fourth in the last seven years.”
MV shut out the Leavitt Hornets (20-0) to cap off a perfect, undefeated season. The Falcons shut out eight of their 12 opponents last fall, and surrendered only 30 points all season.
“But talent aside, the Falcon football team played with passion for another reason,” said Peterson. “They did so in honor and memory of their faithful fallen teammate, Danny Garneau, who passed away from leukemia (complications) last April. Ladies and Gentlemen, this wasn’t just a winning team -- this was a winning team with purpose."
The team was full of talent, including standout scholar-athlete and Fitzpatrick Trophy finalist Cam Kaubris at quarterback, running backs Josh Allen, Taylor Bradley, Tyler Mason and Durland.
“Everything they did, they did for Dan,” said Briggs. “Every tackle was for Dan. Every pass was for Dan. Every touchdown was for Dan. You could see it in the players' faces, you could hear it in their voices, you could see it in their actions."
The wrestlers won the Class B State meet with five individual champions -- three-time champion Ryan Burgess (150 career wins), two-time champion Josh Thornton, Josh Allen, Durland and Ryan Glover. But it was the depth, finalists Cody Magoon and Taylor Carey, Joe Provencher (third) and Nicole Burgess (fourth), who is the first Falcon female to place in a state championship.
Coach Gary Dolloff retired after this season.
Durland, a defensive end, was honored for winning the 29th annual Bruce Campbell Award, presented to the MVP in the Class B division of the Campbell Conference. The Mexico resident (13 sacks) was also the runner-up for the inaugural Graziano Award; the best Maine high school lineman.
Durland relies on his strength and leverage greatly when going up against offensive linemen because being stronger makes him feel more confident. The 6-3 tight end had 13 receptions, including five touchdowns.