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JOHN O’CONNOR, Senior—Soccer
Class B South regional all-star
WMC all-star, first-team
O’Connor was one of the most gifted players in the conference and led the Capers on their deepest playoff run in 16 years.
O’Connor has long been a soccer aficionado, even dressing up as a soccer player for Halloween as a youngster. He started playing premier soccer at the age of 10 and joined Cape Elizabeth’s varsity team as a freshman midfielder. By his junior year, he was an all-conference and all-state selection and despite always being the focal point of the opposition, he had a superb senior campaign, scoring nine goals and adding 11 assists, but those numbers only began to tell his story.
“(John) ran our midfield, which was the strength of our team,” said longtime Capers coach Ben Raymond. “He was key to our ability to attack, possess and win the ball back in. In each and every game we played, he was probably the most skilled player on the field.”
Highlights included a memorable goal in an early-season loss to four-time defending state champion Yarmouth, a goal and two assists in a win over Wells, a goal in a victory over eventual regional champion Freeport and two goals in a win over Poland.
In the playoffs, the fourth-seeded Capers beat No. 5 Lincoln Academy, 5-0, in the quarterfinals, as O’Connor had a goal and two assists. That win sent Cape Elizabeth to top-ranked Yarmouth for the semifinals and while O’Connor was held off the score sheet and was injured during the contest, his presence was a huge factor as the Capers took an early lead and stunned the nemesis Clippers, 2-1. O’Connor tried to play through pain during the regional final and while Cape Elizabeth erased a two-goal deficit, it lost at Freeport, 3-2.
O’Connor earned many accolades for his play, but isn’t satisfied.
“I think there’s always something I can do better,” O’Connor said. “There’s always something to improve and I always want to get better.”
Off the pitch, O’Connor belongs to the math team, helps out the Unified basketball team and is a member of the adaptive skate program. He plans to play tennis this spring, then he hopes to play soccer in college and has some promising options.
John O’Connor, Cape Elizabeth’s Fall Male Athlete of the Year, will be remembered as one of the finest players to grace one of the state’s most storied programs, as he came up clutch so many times and elevated his team with his skill and his desire to succeed.
Coach Ben Raymond’s comment: “John has been extremely important to our program. He set the tone for us in practice each and every day and he has the ability to make players around him better. He was an outstanding leader for us and had a huge impact on his teammates on a daily basis. He plays with a passion and competitiveness that inspires those around him to do the same. He holds himself and his teammates to high standards. He was the heart of our team and will be missed a great deal. Not only has he made a positive impact on the program, he also leaves the program in a much better place than when he arrived as a freshman.”
2017 Austin Legge (golf)
2016 Ben Ekedahl (football)
2015 Jack O’Rourke (football)
2014 Jack Drinan (football)
2013 Liam Simpson (cross country)
2012 Reese McFarlane (golf)
2011 Tim Lavallee (soccer)
2010 Jack Queeney (soccer)
2009 Ezra Wolfinger (football)
2008 Nate Lavallee (football)
2007 Jim Bump (football)
2006 Graham Egan (cross country)
2005 Mike Kertes (football)
2004 Ron Kelton (golf)
2003 Elliot Cohen (football)
2002 David Croft (soccer)
2001 Jeff Hodge (soccer)
PREZLI PISCOPO, Senior-Soccer
Senior Bowl MVP
Class B South regional all-star
WMC all-star, first team
Piscopo produced yet another superb season, leading her team to a state title before departing for even greener pastures.
Piscopo started playing soccer at the age of nine and immediately fell in love with the sport.
“I like that (soccer) isn’t a one-person sport,” Piscopo said. “If you score, it’s because everyone put in the work to get the goal. I’m very competitive, but I try to have fun too.”
Piscopo made the Capers varsity team as a freshman and made a quick impact. By her junior season, she was scoring clutch goals from ridiculous angles and she was named a regional all-star. This season, Cape Elizabeth was favored to win the state title and Piscopo helped ensure that it happened, scoring 18 of the team’s 59 goals and adding 15 assists.
Highlights included both goals in a season-opening win over Greely, an assist on Karli Chapin’s overtime goal in a victory over two-time defending champion Yarmouth, two goals in a win over York, three assists in a victory over Gray-New Gloucester, a goal (on a penalty kick) and an assist in a win over Freeport, two goals and an assist in a victory over Waynflete, two goals in a win over Lake Region and two more goals in a victory over Poland.
In the playoffs, Piscopo scored the tying goal in a 2-1 semifinal round victory over Yarmouth and had a goal and an assist in a regional final victory over York. Piscopo didn’t score in the state game, but two Chapin goals rallied the Capers to a 2-1 win over Presque Isle and the program’s first state title since 2013.
“That was a perfect way to end the season,” Piscopo said. “It was stressful, but it was a really great year.”
Piscopo, who has long played for the Global Premier Soccer travel team, has committed to attending and playing soccer next year at Southern New Hampshire University in Manchester, New Hampshire.
And there, her excellence figures to continue. Prezli Piscopo, Cape Elizabeth’s Fall Female Athlete of the Year, leaves quite a legacy with the Capers. One of scoring many big goals and one ultimately of triumph.
Coach Graham Forsyth’s comment: “Prezli was a huge part of our success and could conjure up a moment of magic, from nothing. Her pace and athleticism, combined with her strength and technical ability, made her a huge asset in the way we wanted to play and she had a phenomenal season. I have no doubt she’ll succeed in college.”
2017 Maggie Dadmun (volleyball)
2016 Mariah Deschino (soccer)
2015 Maddie Bowe (volleyball)
2014 Tess Haller (volleyball)
2013 Kate Breed (soccer)
2012 Kathryn Clark (soccer)
2011 Melanie Vangel (soccer)
2010 Karyn Barrett (soccer)
2009 Karyn Barrett (soccer)
2008 Emily Attwood (cross country)
2007 Emily Attwood (cross country)
2006 Marla Houghton (soccer)
2005 Dana Riker (soccer)
2004 Elise Moody-Roberts (cross country)
2003 Elise Moody-Roberts (cross country)
2002 Clare Egan (cross country)
2001 Addie Rintel (field hockey)