(Ed. Note: For the complete Scarborough-South Portland boys’ soccer and Cape Elizabeth-Falmouth and Scarborough-Marshwood field hockey game stories, please see theforecaster.net)
The fall sports season is still in its infancy, but there are already ample signs that it’s going to be something special.
While football has garnered its share of headlines (please see story), soccer, field hockey, volleyball, cross country and golf teams are also underway.
Here’s a glimpse at the limited action so far.
The boys’ soccer season began with an exciting showdown between two-time defending Class A champion Scarborough and a host South Portland squad which believed the time had come for it to beat the Red Storm.
But as has happened so many times before, Scarborough had the last laugh.
Moments after a sensational defensive play from junior Matt Caron kept the game scoreless, Scarborough went on top courtesy a penalty kick from last year’s state game hero, senior Sam Ware. Back roared the Red Riots, as their junior standout, Ahmed Suja, converted a free kick in highlight reel fashion to tie the score.
But just when it looked like South Portland had momentum, Caron’s intangibles returned, as his ability to throw the ball from the sideline into the box led to a pair of goals in a 3 minute, 10 second span.
With 9:10 to go before halftime, sophomore Garrett King finished a Caron throw to put Scarborough ahead for good. Then, with 6 minutes showing, junior Jake Kacer did the same and the visitors had a 3-1 advantage at the break.
The coup de grace came less than two minutes into the second half when King finished a picturesque cross from sophomore Noah Stracqualursi and the Red Storm’s defense slammed the door from there as they went on to a statement-making 4-1 triumph, stretching their unbeaten streak in season openers to 13.
“We had some younger players who needed to step up and they definitely did their job today,” Caron said. “It was an all-around great effort by the team. We put the pressure on and we carried it from there.”
“It was a good start,” said longtime Red Storm coach Mark Diaz. “You could see my kids were nervous. Once we got through the first 15, 20 minutes, I thought we settled down and played better.”
Scarborough passed another tough road test Tuesday, winning, 1-0, at Portland in a rematch of last year’s Western A Final. Ware scored early and it held up. The Red Storm finally came home Thursday to face Biddeford. Marshwood pays a visit Tuesday of next week.
South Portland did some good things in its loss to Scarborough, but fell to 0-13-1 all-time against the Red Storm.
“(Scarborough’s) a good team, obviously,” Red Riots coach Bryan Hoy said. “I don’t think I saw us connect more than three or four passes at a time. In the preseason, we were connecting 25, 30 passes at a time. We have to work on that a little bit. It’s encouraging that we competed.”
South Portland evened its record at 1-1 Tuesday with a 3-0 home win over Thornton Academy. Kervnes Antoine had two goals and Suja scored the other. The Red Riots were at Gorham Thursday and visit Westbrook Tuesday of next week.
In Western B, Cape Elizabeth eked out a 2-1 win at Freeport in its opener. Connor Thoreck scored the first goal and Wes Parker struck late to break a tie. Tuesday, the Capers improved to 2-0 with a 4-1 home win over York. Cole Caswell had two goals, while R.J. Sarka and Griffin Thoreck each added one. Cape Elizabeth goes to Yarmouth, hoping to avenge last year’s playoff loss, Friday, then hosts Poland Tuesday of next week.
In Western D, Greater Portland Christian School opened with a 1-0 win at Rangeley, then settled for a 4-4 draw at Pine Tree Academy. The Lions were at Chop Point Wednesday, visit Vinalhaven Monday and go to Temple Academy Wednesday.
On the girls’ side, defending Class B state champion Cape Elizabeth started hot with a 5-0 home win over Freeport. Kate Breed and Mariah Deschino both had two goals, while Tori Diaz also tickled the twine. Tuesday, however, the Capers fell at at York, 3-1. Katherine Briggs had the lone goal. Cape Elizabeth goes to Yarmouth Friday, hosts Lake Region Saturday and visits Poland Tuesday of next week.
In Western A, Scarborough opened with a 3-0 win at South Portland. The game was scoreless at halftime, but the Red Storm came to life in the second half behind goals from Katherine Kirk, Ashley Perriello and Sam Sparda. Tuesday, the Red Storm improved to 2-0 with a 2-1 come-from-behind win over Portland in their home opener. Perriello tied the game in the first half and Ashley Gleason won it in the second. Scarborough is at Biddeford Saturday and goes to dangerous Marshwood Wednesday of next week.
South Portland looked to avoid an 0-2 start when it went to powerhouse Thornton Academy Wednesday. The Red Riots host Gorham Saturday and welcome Westbrook Wednesday of next week.
In Western D, GPCS opened with losses at Rangeley (2-0) and Pine Tree (7-0). The Lions were home against Vinalhaven Wednesday, visit Buckfield Friday and go to Vinalhaven Monday.
Scarborough’s field hockey team, the two-time defending Western A champion, has already knocked off two of the teams ostensibly best equipped to knock the Red Storm off.
Scarborough opened at home against highly touted Marshwood. After several close calls, the Red Storm got second half goals from Lily Nygren, Gabby Farino and Kristen Murray and went on to a 3-0 triumph in a game they could have won by even more.
“It’s a great way to jump-start the season,” said Murray. “We showed we could bring it out there in the first game.”
“Talk about hitting the ground running,” said longtime Scarborough coach Kerry Mariello. “It’s a good momentum shift for us. The final 10 minutes we looked good. We came to the ball and we were more patient.”
The Red Storm then went to Massabesic Monday and prevailed, 3-0. Murray, Maddy Dobecki and Abby Walker had the goals.
Scarborough hosted Noble Wednesday and plays at improved Portland Monday.
“We’re meshing well together, but we have to keep learning how each other plays and how we can work better together,” Nygren said.
“We’ll keep growing from game to game,” Mariello said. “We need to keep making adjustments and we will. Everything still needs work. It’s a matter of jelling together. We’ll get there.”
South Portland lost its first two games: 4-1 at home to Gorham and 5-0 at Marshwood. Sophia Cummings had the goal against the Rams. The Red Riots hosted Massabesic Wednesday and visit Noble Tuesday of next week.
Cape Elizabeth got off to a hot start by holding off visiting Gray-New Gloucester (1-0) and host Falmouth (2-1). Hannah Bosworth had the winning goal against the Patriots and after Taylor Herrera tied the score against the Yachtsmen, Bosworth again delivered the go-ahead tally, courtesy a nice pass from Caroline Garfield.
“I got in front of Caroline and screamed, ‘Through, through, through’ and she just tapped it and I just had to put it in,” Bosworth said. “It was a beautiful sound.”
A late save from goalie Mary DiPietro kept the Capers on top and they held on.
“We all pulled together,” DiPietro said. “Falmouth’s always an amazing team. Coming to their home turf and beating them is an amazing feeling. Our team chemistry has grown a lot. All the girls are extremely close. It’s a group effort. We don’t have just one outstanding player.”
“It’s an awesome sign,” Holland added. “Gray the other day was a little rough, we were working out the kinks. Everything we’ve worked on in practice, we capitalized on here today. I was pretty psyched about that. We have eight seniors with experience. They’re our mainstay. We have confident players. They played awesome today.”
Monday, Cape Elizabeth fell to 2-1 after losing, 2-1, to visiting Poland. Bosworth had the goal. The Capers were at Fryeburg Thursday, host Lake Region Saturday and welcome Greely Monday.
Scarborough’s volleyball team, a state finalist in 2013, opened its new season last Friday with a 3-0 (25-18, 25-14, 25-14) home win over Gorham. Tuesday, the Red Storm improved to 2-0 with a 3-0 (25-6, 25-11, 25-10) victory at Cheverus. Scarborough took a 16-match regular season win streak into Thursday’s showdown at Falmouth (see theforecaster.net), which, oh by the way, was a rematch of last year’s Class A Final. Saturday, the Red Storm travel to Ellsworth and Mt. Desert Island. Tuesday of next week, they host Windham.
Cape Elizabeth, a state semifinalist a year ago, began its title quest Tuesday with a 3-0 (29-27, 25-18, 25-18) victory at South Portland. The Capers had a showdown at Greely Thursday and visit Cony Tuesday of next week.
South Portland opened with a 3-0 loss at Thornton Academy. Tuesday, the Red Riots fell to 0-2 after a 3-0 (27-29, 18-25, 18-25) home loss to Cape Elizabeth. South Portland was home against Gorham Thursday and visits Biddeford Tuesday of next week.
Cape Elizabeth’s cross country team joined Kennebunk, Traip and York at Wells in its season opener. The two-time defending Class B state champion boys were second to the Wildcats, despite Kyle Kennedy finishing first individually in 17 minutes, 34 seconds. The girls were first as Rhoen Fiutak (21:27) and Sam Feenstra (22:14) went 1-2.
After opening with the SMAA Relays last week, Scarborough and South Portland will take part in their first countable meets Friday.
The Red Riots host Cheverus, Marshwood and Windham.
The Red Storm join Massabesic and Portland at Biddeford.
Cape Elizabeth’s powerhouse golf team rolled at Lake Region in the opener, 6-1 and played at Freeport Tuesday. After hosting York Wednesday and visiting Wells Thursday, the Capers go to Gray-New Gloucester Tuesday of next week.
Scarborough opened with wins over Cheverus (8.5-4.5) and South Portland (12.5-0.5). The Red Storm were home against Deering Wednesday, go to Portland Monday and visit defending Class A champion Falmouth Wednesday of next week.
South Portland started with losses to Portland (8-5) and Scarborough (12.5-0.5). The Red Riots were home with Cheverus Wednesday and welcome Deering next Wednesday.