Buckle up, playoffs right around the corner

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(Editor’s note: For the complete Yarmouth-Cape Elizabeth boys’ soccer and Falmouth-Fryeburg and Falmouth-NYA field hockey game stories, please visit theforecaster.net)

Even though we were treated to a delicious taste of summer in recent days, the fall sports season is coming to a close.

Golf is in the process of determining its team and individual champs (please see story). Field hockey’s regular season expired at press time, while soccer, volleyball and cross country will soon follow suit.

Here’s where things stand as we approach the middle of October:

Field hockey

All five local field hockey teams appeared playoff-bound at the start of the week.

Falmouth is suddenly red-hot, thanks to its unrivaled ability to steal games late. Last week, the Yachtsmen eked out a 2-1 home win over Fryeburg, on junior Jillian Rothweiler’s goal with 53 seconds to play, and a 2-1 victory at defending Class C champion North Yarmouth Academy, thanks to a game-tying goal from senior Megan Fortier with 24 seconds to go and Fortier’s winner in double overtime.

Fortier also had the first goal against Fryeburg, but after sophomore goalie Hillary Nash made a huge save on a late penalty stroke, Rothweiler was in the hero’s role at the end.

“Near the end of games, we get excited and fired up and that’s when we do our best,” Rothweiler said. “We were all looking forward to this game. Fryeburg’s a good team and we knew it was worth a lot of points.”

Fortier stole the show against the Panthers, her former team, with her flair for the dramatic.

“I don’t think it gets better than this,” Fortier said. “I talked about it with my team, that this was the game to win. After (Fryeburg), it was kind of like another big game. We were all hyped for it.”

“It’s a tough thing to do, play against your old school and friends,” said Yachtsmen coach Robin Haley. “You want to play well and make a difference. She did. She finished it off and I’m happy for her.”

Falmouth (8-4-1) finished the regular season at Cape Elizabeth Tuesday. The Yachtsmen were sixth in the Western B Heals entering that game and were hoping to move up.

“We’re definitely peaking at the right time,” Fortier said. “We can still get better. We know what we have to do and we’re ready to go into playoffs.”

Greely had its three-game win streak snapped Wednesday at nemesis York, with a 2-0 loss. Friday, the Rangers bounced back with a 2-0 home win over Cape Elizabeth (Eliza Porter and Freyja Victory had the goals) to improve to 9-4 (fifth in the Heals). Greely finished the regular season at Wells Tuesday.

Yarmouth, seeking its first playoff trip since 2006, was 5-6-2 and ninth in the region (the top 10 qualify) entering Tuesday’s finale at Freeport. The Clippers battled visiting Lake Region to a scoreless tie last Wednesday, then fell at home to York Friday, 3-0.

In Western C, it appears NYA will be the No. 2 seed behind Sacopee. The Panthers blanked visiting Poland (8-0) and host Traip (2-0) before the agonizing 2-1 overtime home loss to Falmouth. Against the Knights, Katherine Millett had four goals and Kayla Rose two. Millett had both goals in the win over the Rangers and scored early in the second half against the Yachtsmen, which looked like it would hold up until Fortier tied the game late, then won it in the second overtime to drop the Panthers to 9-4.

“Its very tough,” NYA first-year coach Tracy Quimby said. “I told them this is what (Falmouth) did against Fryeburg. They knew and were ready. I’m extremely proud of how the girls played. They played to their abilities today. Every single player. This is what we need to do all the time.”

The Panthers closed at Waynflete Tuesday. They will get up to two home playoff games and if they get to the regional final, will play on turf at Thornton Academy.

“I’m looking forward to playing teams like Lisbon and Telstar, teams we haven’t played yet,” Quimby said. “This was the peak right here. I hope we can keep this intensity up and take it to the tournament.”

Freeport sandwiched losses at Sacopee Valley (3-2) and at home to Waynflete (4-1) around a 3-2 victory at Old Orchard Beach last week. Korissa Lavers and Abigail Mahoney had the goals against the Hawks. In the win, Katie Turner scored twice and Jenny Breau delivered the winner with two seconds to go in double overtime. Sydney Ambrose scored and Kayla Thurlow had the assist in the loss to the Flyers. The Falcons took an 8-5 mark and the No. 4 ranking in the Heals into Tuesday’s finale at home against Yarmouth.

The preliminary round of the playoffs will be held Saturday. The quarterfinals are next Tuesday and Wednesday.

Boys’ soccer

The defending Class B state champion Yarmouth boys’ soccer team extended its unbeaten streak to 10 last week with wins at Cape Elizabeth (1-0) and at home against NYA (2-0). Against the Capers, in a deluge, senior Sam Torres scored a first half goal and the Clippers held on for the victory.

“Even though I was playing left back today, we knew we’d stress playing it on the outside since Cape is strong in the middle,” Torres said. “There’s so much space on those wings. Any chance I’m going to get, I’m just going to put it on frame. On a night like this, it’s all about getting shots on frame since the ball’s so slippery.”

“I thought we came out the first 10, 15 minutes, kept the ball on the carpet and moved it well,” Yarmouth coach Mike Hagerty said. “We had combinations. It paid off hiding Sam in the back. He made the run and was completely free. He’s such a good soccer player. Sam got the ball on frame. On a wet night, good things can happen.”

Against the Panthers, David Murphy (from Wyatt Jackson) and Ryan Maguire (from Torres) scored.

The Clippers (9-2-1) entered the week a narrow second to York in the Western B Heals. They return to action with a showdown at Falmouth Friday. They host York in the regular season finale Monday.

“We won’t let up at all,” Torres said. “We have to keep pressing and keep moving. That’s what we’ve been doing ever since our 0-2 start.”

Falmouth was third in the region after splitting games last week. The Yachtsmen downed visiting Gray-New Gloucester, 2-1, but lost at Greely, 1-0. Andy Murry had both goals against the Patriots. Falmouth improved to 8-2-1 Monday with a 1-0 win at Freeport on J.P. White’s goal in the 69th minute. After going to York Wednesday, the Yachtsmen host Yarmouth Friday and finish the regular year at home with Cape Elizabeth next Tuesday.

Freeport fell to 5-5-1 and sixth in the region after Monday’s loss. The Falcons had several golden opportunities in the first half and hit the post in the second before Falmouth transitioned for the game winner. After hosting Fryeburg Wednesday, Freeport is home with Waynflete Friday and closes at home with Wells Monday.

In Western A, Greely is coming on fast. The Rangers dominated host Lake Region, 9-0, last Thursday, then got a huge vote of confidence with a 1-0 home win over Falmouth. Against the Lakers, Aidan Black and Gavin Collins both scored twice. Mitchel Donovan’s first half goal stood up against the Yachtsmen and Elijah Leverett had a solid game between the pipes. Greely (6-5-1 and eighth in the Heals) hosted NYA Tuesday and closes at Cape Elizabeth Friday.

In Western C, NYA was 5-5-2 and eighth in the Heals after splitting games last week. After pounding visiting Buckfield, 12-2, the Panthers lost at Yarmouth, 2-0. D.J. Nicholas and Ryan Rousseau both scored four goals against the Bucks. After playing at Greely Tuesday, NYA finishes at home versus Lake Region Tuesday.

Girls’ soccer

On the girls’ side, Greely was a close second to Gorham in the Western Class A Heals at the start of the week after recent victories over host Fryeburg (8-0) and visiting Lake Region (5-3). Against the Raiders, Julia Mitiguy had two goals, while Molly Fitzpatrick, Shannon Fitzpatrick, Audrey Parolin, Sara Schad, Libby Thomas and Kristina Volta all struck once. Parolin had three goals against the Lakers, while Schad and Sammi Toorish each had one. The Rangers (11-1) played at NYA Tuesday and finish the regular season at home against Cape Elizabeth Friday in a game that will go a long way toward determining the top seed for the playoffs.

In Western B, Falmouth began the week second to unbeaten Morse in the Heals after home wins last week over Freeport (6-1) and Gray-New Gloucester (2-0). Caitlin Bucksbaum scored twice, while Maggie Bohrmann, Cassie Darrow, Angela Mallis and McKenzie Myers all had one goal against the Falcons. Bucksbaum and Darrow had the goals against the Patriots. The Yachtsmen (8-2-1) had a showdown at rival York Tuesday (a rematch of last year’s regional final), welcome Yarmouth Friday and close at Cape Elizabeth Tuesday of next week.

Yarmouth has climbed to sixth in the region with a 5-7 record after blanking visiting Poland (2-0) and NYA (3-0) last week before falling at Wells Monday, 2-0. Against the Knights, Ricki Pierce scored both goals. Claudia Lockwood, Mo McNaboe and Emma Torres all struck against the Panthers. The Clippers go to Falmouth Friday and York Monday of next week.

Freeport was 4-7 and was clinging to the 11th and final playoff spot in Western B when the week began. The Falcons dropped a 6-1 decision last week at Falmouth. Jocelyn Davee scored for Freeport. After going to Wells Tuesday, Freeport welcomes NYA Thursday and closes Monday at Old Orchard Beach. The Falcons are seeking their first playoff berth since 2005.

In Western C, NYA began the week 2-9 and 12th, which is one spot short of a postseason berth. The Panthers earned their second win of the year last Tuesday, 3-1, over visiting Buckfield (Chloe Leishman scored twice, Ally Morrison once). They then lost at Yarmouth, 3-0, despite a stellar effort in goal from Scout Fischman. NYA hosted Greely Tuesday, visits Freeport Thursday and finishes at home with Lake Region Tuesday of next week.

Volleyball

Greely’s volleyball team defeated Mt. Desert Island in a pivotal battle of unbeatens Monday afternoon to improve to 12-0 and essentially clinch the top spot in the Class A Heals. The Rangers won in three games (25-11, 25-13, 25-19). Greely was coming off a 3-0 home win over defending state champion Biddeford last week (25-17, 25-11, 25-19). The Rangers hosted Gorham Tuesday and finish the regular season at Falmouth Friday.

The Yachtsmen, state finalists each of the past two years, improved to 8-4 with a 3-0 win at Cony Friday. Falmouth (fourth in Class A) hosted Lake Region Tuesday and closes at home with Greely Friday.

In Class B, Yarmouth began the week 9-3 and third behind Bucksport and Calais in the Heals. The Clippers beat Cony in three games (25-15, 25-19, 25-8) last Tuesday for their seventh straight match victory. Gina Robertson had 10 straight service points to break open the first game. She finished with six aces and 16 service points. Morgan Cahill had eight kills and 11 service points. Grace Mallett added 12 assists and 12 service points. Sophia Siddall was superb defensively with five digs. Yarmouth hosted Scarborough in a pivotal match Tuesday and closes at home with NYA Friday.

The Panthers were 2-11 and ninth in the standings when the week began. NYA dropped 3-0 decisions to visiting Kennebunk last Wednesday and host Biddeford Thursday. The Panthers finish the year at Yarmouth Friday.

Cross country

The curtain came down on the cross country regular season last weekend.

Greely hosted Cape Elizabeth, Falmouth, Waynflete and Yarmouth. The Yachtsmen boys (first in the latest coaches’ poll) and girls (fifth) were both first. The Rangers boys (tied for third in the coaches’ poll) were second and the girls were third. The Clippers came in fourth on the girls’ side and fifth in the boys’ race.

Individually, Falmouth’s Tim Follo won the boys’ meet in 16 minutes, 53 seconds. Greely was paced by runner-up Nate Madeira (17:08). Yarmouth’s top finisher was Braden Becker (10th, 17:59). Falmouth’s Madeline Roberts won the girls’ race in 20:47. Greely’s Kirstin Sandreuter came in third (21:17). Yarmouth was paced by Sarah Becker (fourth, 21:23).

NYA hosted Freeport, Merriconeag and Sacopee Valley. The eighth-ranked Falcons were first in the boys’ race, with the Panthers second and Merriconeag third. On the girls’ side, Merriconeag won, with Freeport the runner-up and NYA third.

Individually, Merriconeag’s Jack Pierce won the boys’ race in 16 minutes. NYA’s Rudy Guiliani was runner-up (16:57). Taylor Saucier came in third (17:06). In the girls’ meet, Hillary Detert of NYA was first (20:26). Freeport’s Nina Davenport (20:43) came in second. Merriconeag was led by Jesse Saffeir (third, 21:01).

Friday, Falmouth’s Community Park will be the site of the Western Maine Conference championship meet.

The regional championships are scheduled for Saturday, Oct. 22, at Twin Brook in Cumberland. The state championships are Saturday, Sept. 29, also at Twin Brook.

 Sports Editor Michael Hoffer can be reached at mhoffer@theforecaster.net. Follow him on Twitter: @foresports.

Sidebar Elements


Greely senior Will McAdoo soars over Falmouth junior Connor Murphy during the teams’ battle Saturday night. The Rangers earned a Heal Points-rich 1-0 win, their third in a row.

Three of the conference’s best runners (from left), Falmouth’s Thomas Edmonds and Greely’s Stefan Sandreuter and Nate Madeira, lead the way during Friday’s meet at Twin Brook. Madira wound up second individually, Sandreuter was third and Edmonds fifth. The Yachtsmen were first as a team and the Rangers came in second.

Greely’s Allie Day tries to fend off Cape Elizabeth’s Emma Inhorn during Friday’s meet. Day wound up seventh and Inhorn placed 11th. The Rangers were third as a team. Falmouth came in first.

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Sports Editor of The Forecaster since 2001. Find detailed game stories at theforecaster.net. I tweet prodigiously at @foresports.