Drama, triumph continue for sports teams in Forecaster Country

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(Ed. Note: For the full Yarmouth-Cape Elizabeth boys’ and Falmouth-Greely girls’ soccer stories, please visit theforecaster.net)

As the stretch run of the 2010 fall sports season grows nearer, teams are keeping a closer eye on the standings and will look to make the most of every remaining outing. Here’s a look at where things stand as September gives way to October:

Boys’ soccer

Yarmouth’s boys’ soccer team is still unbeaten, despite a challenging schedule and even an unforeseen power outage. Last Thursday, the Clippers went to unbeaten Cape Elizabeth, put up the first goal the Capers had allowed all year (from senior Luke Pierce in the first half), then, after the hosts rallied to tie the score, the power went out with a couple minutes remaining and the teams agreed to settle for a 1-1 tie.

“It’s rough,” said Pierce. “Toward the end of the game, it got so competitive with both teams playing really hard. It’s unfortunate to end like this, but it’s better than someone being up 1-0 and there being time left and the game being called. Still, it’s tough, but I guess we can settle for this.”

Yarmouth improved to 6-0-1 (good for second behind Maranacook in the latest Western Class B Heal Points standings) Friday with a 1-0 win at Fryeburg. Pierce had the lone goal. The Clippers were home against crosstown rival North Yarmouth Academy Tuesday, go to York Thursday and host Freeport next Tuesday.

Falmouth is still looking to find its stride. After back-to-back losses at Yarmouth and Cape Elizabeth, the Yachtsmen improved to 5-2 (fourth in Western B) with one goal wins at Greely (1-0) and Gray-New Gloucester (2-1, in overtime) last week. Sophomore J.P. White had the lone goal versus the Rangers. Junior Brandon Tuttle scored in regulation against the Patriots and senior Sam White had the winner in the second five-minute overtime.

Falmouth was home with York Tuesday, visits Freeport Thursday and hosts Greely Saturday before going to York next Tuesday.

Freeport entered the week 2-5-1 and 12th in the Heals after a 1-0 home win over Poland and a 5-0 home loss to York last week. In the victory, senior Ryan Farley played the hero with the lone goal. The Falcons were at Greely Tuesday, host Falmouth Thursday and go to Yarmouth next Tuesday.

In Western A, Greely is in need of some big victories if it wants to keep its 10-year postseason streak alive. The Rangers dropped recent showdowns against Heal Points-rich Cape Elizabeth, Falmouth and Yarmouth, but improved to 4-3 on the year Saturday with a 5-1 win at Lake Region. Senior Jon Coyne led the way with a pair of goals.

Greely (12th in the Heals, only the top nine qualify for the playoffs) was home against Freeport Tuesday, visits Falmouth Saturday and goes to Cape Elizabeth next Tuesday.

In Western C, NYA improved to 3-2 last week with wins at A.R. Gould (11-4) and Sacopee (2-0). Junior Matt Michaud had three goals in the win over A.R. Gould. Freshman Jackson Cohan-Smith added a pair. Against the Hawks, Michaud had both goals.

The Panthers (ninth in the Heals) played at Yarmouth Tuesday and host rival Waynflete Saturday.

Girls’ soccer

On the girls’ side, Yarmouth took a perfect 7-0 mark into Tuesday’s game at NYA. The Clippers enjoyed a come-from-behind 3-1 win at Cape Elizabeth last Thursday, then blanked visiting Fryeburg, 5-0, Friday. Against the Capers, senior Devin Simsarian scored twice and senior Courtney Barker added a goal. Senior Jeanna Lowery and sophomore Tess Merrill had assists. Simsarian added three more goals in the win over the Raiders and senior Danielle Torres scored twice.

Yarmouth (second behind Leavitt in the Western B Heals as of Tuesday morning) has a huge home showdown versus defending Class B champion York Thursday at 6 p.m. The Clippers host Freeport Monday.

The Falcons are enjoying their best season since 2005, the last time they made the playoffs. Freeport won, 3-2, at Poland last Wednesday, then fell, 5-0, at York Friday, but is still 5-2-1 on the season (good for eighth in the standings). In the victory over the Knights, senior Katee Poulin, junior Jess Hench and sophomore Aubrey Pennell all scored to help erase a 2-0 deficit.

The Falcons were home against Greely Tuesday and go to Yarmouth Monday.

Falmouth has continued to win despite its in-season coaching change. Last Wednesday, the Yachtsmen went to Greely and held on for a hard-fought 1-0 win behind a first half from senior Jessie L’Heureux. Coach Jon Meek, who replaced Jon Shardlow the week before had also stepped down the day prior to the game (he returned by week’s end and is expected to finish the season), so the team was led against the Rangers by longtime assistant Cooper Higgins.

“For me it’s a thrill,” said Higgins, the one-time Falmouth High athletic director. “I can’t thank the girls enough. It was a great effort in a hard situation. I’m really pleased how they rose to the challenge. All things considered, it’s a great storyline for a team that’s been down and out.”

“We needed to prove to everyone that we can still do this,” L’Heureux added. “It was frustrating not scoring more, but one goal was enough.”

The win was the third in a row for the Yachtsmen, who improved to 6-1 (fifth in the Heals). Falmouth faced a huge test Tuesday at York, in a rematch of last year’s regional final (a 2-0 Wildcats win).

“We want to win states,” said L’Heureux. “York’s our biggest rival. We want to beat them bad.”

The Yachtsmen open their new turf field Friday night against Greely. Tuesday of next week, they host York.

The loss was the third in a row for the Rangers, but they bounced back with wins over visiting Lake Region (2-1) and host Gray-New Gloucester (3-1) to improve to 4-3 (13th in Western A). Junior Libby Thomas and freshman Teal Otley scored to help Greely rally against the Lakers. In the win over the Patriots, Thomas, senior Kelly Burrell and junior Audrey Parolin scored, while sophomore Sammi Toorish and freshman Allie Morrill added assists.

The Rangers were at Freeport Tuesday, play at Falmouth Friday and host Cape Elizabeth Tuesday. Greely needs some big wins and fast.

“Fortunately, because we do have such a tough schedule, the good side is we can get (Heal Points) quickly,” Rangers coach Michael Kennedy said. “The down side is that it’s tough to get those points. Games against York (Oct. 7 and 12) will be pivotal. We have to try and beat (Falmouth) there. 

“Last year, it was such a veteran group. It was like coaching a college team. This is a talented team. They’re getting it. We’re just really young. The big thing for us is shots on goal. We haven’t had enough shots on goal to beat a quality team. We have the players who can do it. We still need some quality wins.”

In Western C, NYA continues to struggle for wins, putting the Panthers’ 12-year postseason streak in jeopardy. Last week, fell to 1-4-1 after a 2-1 home loss to Old Orchard Beach and a 1-1 tie against visiting Sacopee. Against the Seagulls, sophomore Molly Strabley had the lone goal. In the tie, NYA benefited from an “own goal” by the Hawks.

The Panthers (13th in the Heals) hosted Yarmouth Tuesday, welcome Waynflete Saturday and play host to Poland next Tuesday.

Field hockey

NYA’s field hockey juggernaut has bounced back quite nicely from its first regular season loss since 2008. As of Tuesday, the Panthers were second to Telstar in the Western C Heals with a 9-1 mark after recent victories over visiting Waynflete (11-0), Sacopee (4-0), Old Orchard Beach (10-1) and host Freeport (5-0).

Against the Flyers, junior Megan Fortier scored three goals and added three assists. Classmate Kylie Dalbec had two goals and two assists and senior Frances Leslie and junior Katherine Millett both scored twice. Fortier scored twice more and Dalbec and Millett added a goal and an assist against Sacopee. In the win over the Seagulls, Millett had four goals and two assists, Fortier added a pair of goals and assists and sophomore Jen Brown scored twice. Against the Falcons, Fortier scored twice.

NYA hosted Traip Wednesday, welcomes Poland Saturday and closes the regular season next week with games at Falmouth (Tuesday) and Waynflete (Thursday).

Freeport had a two-game win streak snapped by NYA. Last week, the Falcons won, 3-1, at Traip (as Sydney Ambrose scored two goals and Mia Thomas had one with two assists. Kayla Thurlow also had an assist, while Emily Daniel made 17 saves) and 6-0 over visiting Poland behind three goals from Katie Turner, two from Ambrose and one from Thurlow. Thurlow and Korissa Lavers each had one assist. Megan Peacock made three saves. Daniel made 25 saves in the loss to NYA.

Freeport (6-4 and fifth in Western C) played at Waynflete Wednesday, visits Sacopee Friday and closes the regular year next week at Old Orchard Beach (Tuesday) and Yarmouth (Thursday).

In Western B, Greely is 7-3 and second to York in Western B. Last week, the Rangers sandwiched wins at Gray-New Gloucester (2-0) and at home over Yarmouth (5-1) around a 2-1 double overtime home loss to Falmouth.

Senior Jackie Andrews had a goal and an assist and sophomore Jessica Wilson also scored against the Patriots. Andrews scored twice in the win over the Clippers. Junior CeCi Hodgkins had the goal against the Yachtsmen. Monday, Greely fell to 7-3 on the season after a 2-1 loss at Cape Elizabeth. The Rangers fell behind 2-0 at halftime, but got back in it when sophomore Rachel Hanson scored with 25:12 to play. Despite several chances, Greely could get no closer and went down to defeat.

“I don’t think we’ve down by two goals this year,” said Rangers coach Kristina Prescott. “That’s tough mentally to get past. As the second-ranked team, everyone’s gunning for us.”

Greely played at Lake Region Wednesday, has a huge home test against defending regional champion York Friday and closes the regular season next week at home against Cape Elizabeth (Tuesday) and Wells (Thursday).

“It’s a tough schedule,” Prescott said. “We’ll see what we can do. There’s no standout team this year. It’ll make for interesting playoffs, that’s for sure. We just want to get there. The kids want states this year.”

Falmouth also hopes to make it to the playoffs (the Yachtsmen have gone 13 straight seasons), but has work to do. It was ninth in the Western B Heals as of Tuesday and only seven teams qualify. Falmouth got a big lift from its win over Greely (senior Stephanie Gramse had both goals in the 2-1 victory, including the OT winner). However, the Yachtsmen sandwiched losses to visiting Fryeburg (3-0) and host Gray-New Gloucester (1-0, in double OT) around the win and are now 3-6.

Falmouth was scheduled to host York in the first game on its new turf field Monday, but the newly painted lines were washed away by rain and the game had to be postponed (a rescheduled date was not released by deadline). The Yachtsmen were at Wells Wednesday, visit Fryeburg Friday, host NYA Tuesday, then close the regular season at home against Cape Elizabeth Oct. 8.

Yarmouth has been much more competitive of late, but hasn’t been able to crack the win column. Last Thursday, the Clippers battled visiting playoff-bound Cape Elizabeth before falling, 2-1. Senior Lindsey Purpura scored and senior Cassidy Cleaves made 16 saves. Cleaves made 27 stops in a 5-1 home loss to Greely Saturday (junior Rachel Nixon scored). Monday, Yarmouth fell to 0-9-1 after a 2-1 home loss to Fryeburg. Purpura had the goal, Cleaves made 18 saves.

The Clippers (12th in Western B) go to Lake Region Friday, visit York Tuesday and close with home games against Freeport next Thursday and Gray-New Gloucester Oct. 9.

Cross-country

Area runners competed at the Southwestern Classic, a joint Western Maine Conference-Southern Maine Activities Association meet, Saturday in Cumberland. The meet was contested amid 80-plus degree temperatures and not all of the elite locals took part, but there were still many impressive performances.

On the boys’ side, Greely (third in the latest coaches’ poll) finished a close second to Gorham (125-126). NYA (193) came in sixth and Falmouth, second to Gorham in the coaches’ poll (262), placed seventh. Freeport (270) was eighth. Merriconeag (422) finished 17th. Yarmouth did not participate.

The top local individual was NYA junior Cam Regan, who placed sixth in 17 minutes, 37 seconds. Merriconeag was paced by Jack Pierce (eighth, 17:38.14). Greely’s Sam Johnston came in 10th (17:47.57). Falmouth’s top finisher was Henry Briggs (37th, 18:52.9). Freeport was led by Griffin Day (34th, 18:45.81).

On the girls’ side, Cheverus came in first with 62 points. Greely  (241) was eighth, Falmouth, eighth in the coaches’ poll (325), finished 11th, Merriconeag (337) was 13th, NYA (398) came in 16th and Freeport (459) was 17th.

Greely freshman Kirstin Sandreuter came in fourth (20:35). NYA junior Hillary Detert had the 16th-best time (22:01.50). Merriconeag was paced by Zoe Chace (23rd, 22:29). Falmouth’s top finisher was sophomore Cassie Darrow (45th, 23:43, who recently returned to cross-country from soccer. Freeport was led by senior Lauren Easler (49th, 23:54).

This week, Freeport hosts Merriconeag, Cape Elizabeth and Poland Friday, while Falmouth, Greely, NYA and Yarmouth (the Clippers girls are 10th in the coaches’ poll) run at the Maine cross-country Festival of Champions in Belfast Saturday.

Golf

The golf postseason is right around the corner. The qualifier for the girls’ state tournament is Thursday at Willowdale Golf Club in Scarborough. The Western Maine Conference qualifier is Friday at Natanis Golf Course in Vassalboro, site of the team state championships (Oct. 9) and individual championships (Oct. 16).

Falmouth improved to 7-1 Monday with a 6-1 win over Yarmouth, which dropped to 3-5. Greely improved to 6-3 Monday after downing Cape Elizabeth, 5-2. Freeport is 3-6 and NYA 6-4.

Volleyball

Falmouth’s volleyball team entered the week with a 7-0 mark, second to Mt. Desert Island in the Class A Heals. The Yachtsmen held off visiting Scarborough 3-1 (25-22, 25-23, 15-25, 25-23) last Thursday. Falmouth hoped to stay unbeaten Tuesday when it hosted Gorham. Monday of next week, the Yachtsmen are home against Kennebunk.

One other note on Falmouth: Its two showdowns with Greely (which will be a rematch of last year’s state final) have been rescheduled. The Rangers visit the Yachtsmen Oct. 12. Falmouth goes to Greely two nights later.

Greely is third in the Class A Heals with a 6-1 mark after rolling at Cony Monday, 3-0, in its first countable match in 11 days. The Rangers were at Scarborough Tuesday, visit Biddeford Thursday as they look to avenge their lone loss and Friday visit MDI.

Yarmouth was a 3-0 winner at Cape Elizabeth Friday to improve to 3-4. Senior Abbie Hutchinson had 12 kills. Junior Cathy Agro had six service points, two aces and three blocks. Freshman Grace Mallett had three aces and. Sophomore Lindsay Tyler had seven digs.

“After playing our last four matches against the top four teams in the league, this match came at a good time for us as our spirits were a little down after losing four in a row,” said Yarmouth coach Jim Senecal.

The Clippers were eighth in Class A going into a showdown against visiting Biddeford Tuesday. Thursday, Yarmouth goes to NYA. Monday, the Clippers host Cony.

“We definitely need a win against a top team to solidify our playoff chances,” Senecal said. “We’ve been in our games, but haven’t been able to finish in close games against the top teams.”

In Class B, NYA is 2-6 and eighth in the standings. The Panthers were 3-0 winners at Sumner Friday, then fell 3-1 to Jonesport-Beals and 3-0 to Machias Saturday. NYA is home against Yarmouth Thursday and Cony Friday.

Sports Editor Michael Hoffer can be reached at mhoffer@theforecaster.net

Sidebar Elements


NYA senior Frances Leslie rockets a shot past the Waynflete goalie during the Panthers’ 11-0 home win over the Flyers last Wednesday.

NYA senior Tim Millett shows his putting form during last week’s win over Waynflete. Millett is gearing up to try lead the Panthers to next month’s state tournament, while making a run at a repeat individual Class C crown.

Yarmouth sophomore Gina Robertson unleashes a blast during the Clippers’ 3-0 volleyball win at Cape Elizabeth Friday.

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