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Falmouth senior Camden Carrier is congratulated by freshman Kayla Sarazin (3) and sophomore Abi Lebel after one of her three goals in the Yachtsmen’s 11-4 win over the Yarmouth/Freeport/Gray-New Gloucester co-op team Wednesday night.
Mike Strout photos.
More photos below.
FALMOUTH—Last winter, Falmouth’s girls’ hockey team, en route to a berth in the state final, was shut out on home ice by the Yarmouth/Freeport/Gray-New Gloucester co-op team.
Wednesday evening, the balanced and potent Yachtsmen got another opportunity and this time around, the offense was in midseason form and it wasn’t long until another impressive victory ensued.
After going scoreless for 45 minutes last year, Falmouth tallied a pair of goals in the game’s first 94 seconds, as sophomore Abi Lebel and senior Sarah Hutcheon tickled the twine, but the Yachtsmen didn’t score again the rest of the first period and only held on to a two-goal lead thanks to a pair of nice saves from junior goalie Ally Hurdman.
Then, in the second period, Falmouth erupted for seven goals, sparked by a natural hat trick from senior Camden Carrier. The Yachtsmen scored twice more in the third period and while Yarmouth/Freeport/Gray-New Gloucester discovered its offense it was too little, too late and Falmouth went on to a decisive 11-4 victory.
Carrier scored three times, the Yachtsmen had eight different girls light the lamp and they improved to 4-0-2, dropping Yarmouth/Freeport/Gray-New Gloucester to 2-5 in the process.
“We’re a better team than we were the first week,” said Falmouth coach Rob Carrier. “Getting some game experience and conditioning has benefited us. We’re moving in the right direction.”
Falmouth won the first eight meetings between the program (see sidebar, below), including a 5-1 decision in Yarmouth early last winter, but in the rematch on New Year’s Eve Day, Yarmouth/Freeport/Gray-New Gloucester sprung a 3-0 upset.
So far this season, the Yachtsmen have consistently impressed while Yarmouth/Freeport/Gray-New Gloucester has been up and down.
Falmouth opened with 3-3 ties against Scarborough and Edward Little/Leavitt, then downed York (6-1), Lewiston (4-0) and Cheverus (5-2).
Yarmouth/Freeport/Gray-New Gloucester was a 9-5 winner over Cape Elizabeth/Waynflete/South Portland in its first game and blanked Mt. Ararat, 8-0, then lost to St. Dom’s (12-1), Lewiston (11-0), Edward Little/Leavitt (5-2) and Brunswick (6-5, in overtime).
Wednesday, Falmouth immediately got the jump.
Just 28 seconds in, Lebel scored unassisted for a 1-0 lead.
With 13:26 to go in the first period, Hutcheon (from senior Marcy Kittredge) beat Yarmouth/Freeport/Gray-New Gloucester senior goalie Miranda O’Shea for a 2-0 advantage.
The Yachtsmen then went stagnant offensively and the visitors threatened to rally, but twice in the late stage of the first period, Hurdman denied Yarmouth/Freeport/Gray-New Gloucester junior standout Katie Clemmer in close to keep the score 2-0.
As was the case in the first period, Falmouth had a fast start in the second and this time, the Yachtsmen kept on scoring.
Just 54 seconds in, Hutcheon set up Kittredge for a 3-0 lead.
Next up, senior Caroline Samaras fed sophomore Stone Carmichael for a 4-0 advantage with 12:41 to go.
With 10:44 left, Camden Carrier scored for the first time, on an assist from junior Evie Clement for a 5-0 lead.
Carrier scored again 53 seconds later, from Lebel, to make it 6-0.
Late in the second period, freshman Reade Carmichael (from Stone Carmichael), Samaras (on a rebound of Reade Carmichael’s shot) and Carrier (unassisted) lit the lamp to stretch the lead to 9-0 after two periods.
“Our energy level dipped after we got the second goal and the effort really wasn’t there for most of the rest of the first period,” Rob Carrier said. “It took a regrouped effort after the first period to get refocused. We simplified the game a little bit and came out with a better effort the result yielded that.”
The third period again featured a quick goal, but this time it was the visitors striking, as Clemmer scored unassisted to cut the deficit to 9-1.
Falmouth then got goals from freshman Sarah Noyes (assisted by Clement) and Reade Carmichael (assisted by junior Caroline Proctor) to go up, 11-1, and induce a mercy rule running clock.
That lasted until 5:03 remained, when Yarmouth/Freeport/Gray-New Gloucester senior Keeley Arnold scored on a rebound of a shot from junior Kelsey Meyer.
In the final minute, senior Jenny Holmquist (senior Madison McCallum had the assist) and Clemmer again scored, but that only made the final margin 11-4.
Yarmouth/Freeport/Gray-New Gloucester had a 24-20 shots advantage, but Falmouth made the most of its chances and showed its balance is unrivaled.
“Balance is something we’re looking for this year,” Rob Carrier said. “All the forwards pretty much return from last year’s team and they’re a year older, so they have a better grasp of the offense. They know where to be. We can get scoring from any of them.”
Hurdman stopped 16 shots and freshman Julia Bonnvie, who came on in the third period, made four saves for the Yachtsmen. O’Shea stopped nine shots for Yarmouth/Freeport-Gray-New Gloucester.
Yarmouth/Freeport/Gray-New Gloucester will hope to snap its five-game skid Saturday when Biddeford pays a visit.
Falmouth is also back in action Saturday when improved Portland/Deering comes to town. The Yachtsmen go to Gorham Wednesday and Cape Elizabeth the following Saturday.
“We’re obviously not where we need to be, but we still have seven weeks until playoffs,” Rob Carrier said. “Cape gives us trouble. Gorham is always a team that hangs around with us. Then we have Greely and Scarborough in January.”
Falmouth junior Evie Clement skates in on goal.
Falmouth freshman Sarah Noyes carries the puck up the ice.
Dynamic Yarmouth/Freeport/Gray-New Gloucester junior Katie Clemmer, who scored twice, splits Falmouth junior Devon Sarazin (10) and senior Sarah Hutcheon.
Yarmouth/Freeport/Gray-New Gloucester senior Jenny Holmquist fires a shot on goal.
Falmouth senior Sarah Hutcheon shoots the puck.
Falmouth 5 @ Yarmouth/Freeport/Gray-New Gloucester 1
Yarmouth/Freeport/Gray-New Gloucester 3 @ Falmouth 0
@ Falmouth 5 Yarmouth 0
Falmouth 6 @ Yarmouth 1
Falmouth 4 @ Yarmouth 3 (OT)
@ Falmouth 4 Yarmouth 2
Falmouth 7 @ Yarmouth 0
@ Falmouth 7 Yarmouth 0
Falmouth 4 @ Yarmouth 0