Freeport caps historic week with win at Yarmouth

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Freeport sophomore Ally Randall, left, is congratulated by senior Natalie Anderson after scoring the first goal of Saturday’s 6-0 victory at Yarmouth.

Mike Strout photos.

More photos below.

YARMOUTH—Another day, another historic performance by the Freeport field hockey team.

Saturday morning, the Falcons, four days removed from a scintillating home win over defending Class C state champion St. Dom’s and two days after being competitive with defending Class B South champion York for the first time, paid a visit to rival Yarmouth on the Clippers’ turf field, where they had never won, or even managed to score a goal.

Until now.

The Falcons were frustrated early by Yarmouth senior goalie Cayte Tillotson, but with 6:17 remaining in the first half, sophomore Ally Randall scored on a rebound to put Freeport on top to stay.

Less than two minutes into the second half, the Falcons got some breathing room, as senior Kerry Lefebvre scored.

While Freeport was holding the Clippers without a shot in the second half, it was just a matter of time until the Falcons’ offense broke it open.

With 11:47 to play, Freeport earned a penalty stroke and senior Alexa Koenig converted it.

Three more goals would follow in less than five minutes, as Lefebvre scored twice on rebounds, giving her a hat trick, and senior Natalie Anderson rattled the cage as well, giving the Falcons a 6-0 victory.

Four different players scored as Freeport improved to 7-2 on the season, won at Yarmouth for the first time this century and dropped the Clippers to 4-5 in the process.

“We were motivated to beat Yarmouth,” Lefebvre said. “They’ve been our rival for so long. It was a high after St. Dom’s, then we may have had too much confidence for York, but we got back to our level today.” 

A week to remember

Freeport entered the week feeling good about its chances and just a few days later, has the look of a team that can legitimately contend for a regional title.

The Falcons won at Greely (5-2) in the opener, then, after a 2-1 home loss to Fryeburg Academy, defeated host Lake Region in a playoff rematch (2-0), downed host Cape Elizabeth (5-0), host Gray-New Gloucester (8-2) and visiting Traip Academy (8-0). Tuesday, Freeport took it to a higher level, edging visiting St. Dom’s, the defending Class C state champion, which beat the Falcons by nine goals a year ago, in a 4-3 thriller. Thursday, at defending Class B South champion York, a team Freeport has had no answers for in recent years, it had an edge in shots and penalty corners, but couldn’t find the goal in a 2-0 loss.

“We weren’t timid at York,” Falcons coach Marcia Wood said. “We out-shot them and had more corners. Their goalie and defense were stellar and we couldn’t put it in.”

Yarmouth, under new coach Tracy Quimby, began with a 3-1 win at Poland, but the Clippers couldn’t score in a 1-0 overtime home loss to defending Class B South champion York, a 3-0 setback at Fryeburg Academy and a 3-0 home loss to Greely. After beating host Gray-New Gloucester, 1-0, Yarmouth fell, 1-0, at home to Lake Region, then rallied for a thrilling 3-2 overtime victory at Cape Elizabeth Tuesday and Thursday, downed visiting North Yarmouth Academy, 3-2, on a goal from sophomore Abby Hill as time expired.

Last year, the teams met in Freeport and the host Falcons held on for a 3-2 win.

Yarmouth had won eight of 10 meetings since the teams started playing regularly in 2010, but Saturday, on a 63-degree and breezy morning, Freeport continued to climb the standings, as it just got better as the game went on.

The Falcons threatened just 34 seconds in, as Koenig shot from the side of the circle, but Tillotson kicked the ball away.

Seconds later, off a penalty corner, Koenig had a shot blocked in the circle.

Freeport earned another corner and produced three shots, but Tillotson saved them all, diving to make one of the stops.

After Anderson’s shot hit the side of the cage, the Clippers transitioned to offense and senior Lydia Guay sent a promising cross through the circle, but it went untouched.

After Tillotson saved a shot by Anderson, Hill was denied by Falcons senior goalie Katelyn Rouleau and a Guay rush was broken up by Freeport junior back Rachel Harmon.

Finally, with 6:17 to play before the half, the Falcons got the jump.

The goal was set up by Koenig, who backhanded a shot from the side. Tillotson stopped the ball, but Randall was there to pounce on the rebound and put Freeport on top, 1-0.

After being shutout by a composite 11-0 margin in five previous games on Yarmouth’s turf, the Falcons finally rattled the cage.

“We’re trying to figure out what our warmup needs to be,” Wood said. “It was a little bit of a slow start. Once we score, it continues, but it took awhile to get it in there.”

Late in the half, Rouleau broke up a Guay rush and the Falcons took their slim lead to the break.

Freeport had a 7-2 shots advantage and a 2-0 edge in corners in the first half, but Tillotson’s six saves kept the game close.

The Falcons would end all doubt in the second half.

With 28:13 to play, Koenig set up Freeport’s second goal, as she had a shot saved by Tillotson, but Lefebvre was there to rebound it home for a 2-0 advantage.

After Tillotson denied Anderson, sophomore Hannah Groves, Koenig and senior Reilly Lefebvre, the Clippers had their lone chance of the second half, as Guay set up sophomore Lizzie Guertler, but Guertler shot wide.

Then, with 11:47 to play, after a flurry in front of the Yarmouth goal which ended with Tillotson on the ground, the ball got trapped under her prone body, giving Freeport a penalty stroke.

Koenig would do the honors, but she appeared to by denied by Tillotson, who reached out with her left pad and swatted the ball away.

Koenig would get a reprieve, however, as Tillotson was ruled to have moved before the shot.

Koenig left no doubt on her second chance, again firing a low shot, this one to Tillotson’s right, that got past the keeper and rattled the cage to make the score 3-0.

“We’ve practiced strokes and I had a plan to go for the low corner, but the goalie had an amazing save,” Koenig said. “Then I went back out there and I didn’t want to risk it and go up, so I just went the other way.”

“(Alexa) only took one (stroke) last year and she missed it after making everything in practice,” Wood said. “I told her to stick with what you’re good at. It’s a good thing we practiced.”

With 9:08 left in the game, Kerry Lefebvre scored her second goal, on a rebound for a 4-0 advantage.

With 7:37 to go, she did it again, earning a hat trick and making the score 5-0.

“I just wanted to get it in the cage,” Lefebvre said. “I knew we needed more goals.”

“Kerry is amazing,” Koenig said. “She has so much intensity on the field. You can rely on her to work her hardest and stay on top of her game. I love playing with her.”

“Kerry is aggressive and fast on that wing,” Wood added. “She never gives up. I don’t know she moves her feet so fast. Now that she’s scoring, she’s been consistent.”

Finally, with 4:25 remaining, Reilly Lefebvre set up Anderson for the game’s final tally and Freeport went on to a 6-0 victory.

“Making history is always fun,” said Koenig. “St. Dom’s was a great game. York’s a good team and it was tough playing them. Even though we beat St. Dom’s, who is really good, other teams are really good too and they can beat us. I think we needed that game.”

“It’s a confidence-boost,” Wood said. “We need wins like this. The teams below us, I want to beat. The teams we’re close with, I want to beat, and the teams that might be a little better than us, I want to hang with or beat.”

The Falcons finished with a whopping 28-2 shots advantage and took 10 corners to none for the hosts. Rouleau stopped both shots she faced.

Tillotson had yet another huge game in goal, making 22 saves, but she couldn’t hold off Freeport for 60 minutes.

“We were right there,” Quimby said. “I wish it could have been different. We hung in there, then things tipped the other way. They have extremely good players. They’re having a special season. They’ll be there in the end. We just couldn’t get into the circle or shoot as quickly as we needed to.”

No let-up

Yarmouth will be back in action Monday at Wells, then travels to York Friday.

“We’ll come back out on Monday and hopefully get more shots off, then get ready for York on Friday,” Quimby said. “We need more (Heal Points).”

Freeport has another big week upcoming, as it hosts Poland Monday, welcomes Cape Elizabeth Wednesday, then has a Heal Points-rich showdown at Fryeburg Academy Friday.

A showdown with Greely also remains on the schedule.

“I’m so proud of my team,” Koenig said. “We have to keep a level head and go out and play every game like it’s our last. We hope we can keep winning and get Heal Points.”

“We can’t let up at all,” said Kerry Lefebvre. “We need to just push through. I think we have what it takes to make a run. We’re such a good team together. We love each other.”

“It was a big week for us, holy smokes, and next week’s a big week for us too,” Wood added. “We need to keep the intensity and focus up. Mental mistakes cannot happen. We have to be on from start to finish.

“I have a flashback to 2010 (coaching lacrosse) at Scarborough when I had a senior class that couldn’t lose, but they needed the sophomores, who were just great athletes. They were into it, but you don’t get that into it until senior year, when it’s now or never. We talk to this year’s sophomores about the seniors needing them because we have a great opportunity.”

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

Freeport senior Alexa Koenig fires a shot as Yarmouth senior Lydia Guay defends.

Yarmouth senior goalie Cayte Tillotson denies Freeport senior Kerry Lefebvre point blank. Lefebvre did manage to score three times.

Freeport sophomore Autumn Golding knocks the ball away from Yarmouth junior Tessa Piker.

Freeport senior Brooke Toothaker lunges for the ball as Yarmouth sophomore Winifred Leahy defends.

Freeport senior Kerry Lefebvre and Yarmouth sophomore Anna Pires reach for the ball.

Freeport sophomore Amelia Farrin plays the ball as Yarmouth sophomore Winifred Leahy defends.

Recent Freeport-Yarmouth results

2017
@ Freeport 3 Yarmouth 2

2016
Yarmouth 5 @ Freeport 0 
@ Yarmouth 5 Freeport 0

2015
@ Yarmouth 2 Freeport 0 

2014
Yarmouth 2 @ Freeport 0 

2013
@ Freeport 3 Yarmouth 2
@ Yarmouth 2 Freeport 0

2012
@ Yarmouth 1 Freeport 0

2011
Yarmouth 2 @ Freeport 1

2010
@ Yarmouth 1 Freeport 0

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