It's playoff time for southern edition teams

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The 2010 golf season has come to a close. Field hockey’s playoffs are underway, volleyball’s are as well and cross-country’s regional meet will be held Saturday. If that’s not enough, soccer’s postseason is set to begin.

Rest assured, there will be plenty of drama in the weeks to come.

Here’s an overview:

Golf

A week after golf bestowed its team championships, individuals had their turn at Natanis Golf Course in Vassalboro Saturday.

In Class B, won by Ellsworth’s Greg Martin with an 18-hole score of 77, Cape Elizabeth’s Wilson Laprade tied for fourth with an 82.

In Class A, won by Gorham’s Mike Arsenault (72), Scarborough’s Dan Slavin tied for 10th with an 82.

In the girls’ competition, won by Ft. Kent’s Ali Prescott (79), South Portland’s Elizabeth Canarie placed 23rd (115).

Boys’ soccer

The final soccer Heal Points standings are complete and it figures to be a busy couple weeks for local teams.

In Western A, two-time defending state champion Scarborough is once again the top seed. The Red Storm stumbled twice in the regular season (at home to Gorham and at Deering), but rolled in their final two games, 4-0, at Sanford, and 10-0, at home over Thornton Academy (sophomore Kenny Hodgdon scored three times and junior Andrew Jones and sophomore Austin Downing each added a pair in that one), to wind up first behind their usual potent offense and stingy defense.

Scarborough (12-2) will host the winner of Friday’s preliminary round contest between No. 8 Kennebunk (8-4-2) and No. 9 Windham (8-4-2) in the quarterfinals Wednesday. The Red Storm were 3-0 winners at the Rams on Oct. 2 and held off the visiting Eagles, 2-0, five days later. Last year, Scarborough edged Windham, 1-0, in overtime, in the regional final.  The Red Storm have never faced Kennebunk in the playoffs.

South Portland finished the regular year 10-3-1 (its best record since 1988) after a 4-1 loss at Portland and a 3-0 home victory over Cheverus (senior Dillon Leary, junior Dan Grzewski and sophomore Damjan Draskovic had the goals). The Red Riots earned the No. 5 seed in Western A (their best seed since 1988 and will go to No. 4 Gorham (9-3-2) in Wednesday’s quarterfinals. The teams tied, 2-2, Oct. 12 in Gorham and have no playoff history.

Cape Elizabeth was solid and occasionally spectacular in 2010, finishing 9-3-2 after a 1-0 loss at York Tuesday. The Capers finished third in Western A behind Scarborough and Portland and will play host to No. 6 Marshwood (8-4-2) in the quarterfinals Wednesday. The teams didn’t meet in the regular season and have no postseason history.

In Western D, Greater Portland Christian School qualified as the No. 4 seed after a 6-6-1 campaign. The Lions lost, 10-1, at Calvary Chapel last Thursday, then tied host Islesboro, 2-2, in the finale Monday. Matt Hammond and Anthony Simpson scored. Sam Carlson made 12 saves. GPCS will host No. 5 Buckfield (7-4-1) in the quarterfinals Wednesday. The Lions lost twice to the Bucks this year, 6-5 at home Sept. 14 and 3-2 in Buckfield a week later.

Girls’ soccer

On the girls’ side, Scarborough accomplished an amazing feat this fall, not just by going 14-0 for the first time, but by doing it without surrendering a single goal. The Red Storm wrapped up the regular season with shutout wins over host Bonny Eagle (8-0), visiting Sanford (1-0) and host Thornton Academy (1-0), last year’s regional champion. Sophomore Sarah Martens scored twice against the Scots. Junior Jessica Broadhurst had the lone goal against the Redskins on Senior Night. Against the Golden Trojans, senior Cortney Hughes scored (from senior Tori Armishaw) and Scarborough wound up perfect.

“With a lot of tough defending and some luck, we ended up finishing the season undefeated and without giving up a goal,” said Scarborough coach Mike Farely. “Our backs once again played a really good game because Thornton came out very motivated and really did a good job pressuring us. They hit the crossbar twice, one that hit the underside of the bar and bounced down on the goal line and (senior goalkeeper) Jill Deering just turned around and grabbed the ball. They also had two chances at the end of the game on that their forward hit high from the right side of the box all the way across to the left side of the goal and Jill just got her fingertips on the ball and defected it wide. Then, with 20 seconds left, Thornton crossed a ball from the left side all the way to the right and their outside midfielder got a head on it and directed it low to the left-hand corner and Jill dove and made another fingertip save and (senior) Nicollette Caron cleared the ball wide. It really was a passion-filled, hard-fought game. Very much like a playoff game.

“To go through a season allowing no goals is a very impressive result. We played three of the top four SMAA teams on the road against teams that don’t lose very often at home. Our backs, led by Nicollette and (junior) Emily Tolman have done a fantastic job keeping some very talented forwards off the scoreboard, but this kind of accomplishment is really a team effort. From our senior goalkeepers, Jill (eight shutouts) and Abby Van Note (six shutouts), making timely saves and really giving our players confidence that when we had a breakdown they were there to make the saves, to our forwards who really pressured the other teams’ backs to deny free driven balls out of the back, to our midfielders, who consistently won individual battles in the middle of the field, making it easier on our backs to do their jobs. This team really committed themselves to not allowing goals. We’ve done well offensively scoring timely goals as well. We’ve had 14 different players score goals and we have had a balanced attack out of the midfield as well.

“All that being said, we now start a new season, the playoff season, where what you’ve done in the regular season doesn’t matter much. We have focus on being strong defensively and really committing ourselves to playing for 80 minutes or longer if necessary and taking the playoffs one game at a time and hopefully that will lead to success.”

Scarborough is the top seed in Western A for the second year in a row and will open with the quarterfinals Tuesday against either No. 8 Cape Elizabeth (7-5-2) or No. 9 Deering (8-6). The Red Storm didn’t face the Capers this year. They won, 3-0, at the Rams on Oct. 6. Scarborough has no playoff history with Deering, but does have plenty with Cape Elizabeth. Twice in the past six years, the lower-seeded Capers eliminated the Red Storm, including a 2-1 preliminary round decision two years ago. All-time, Scarborough is 0-4 against Cape Elizabeth in the postseason.

The Capers played defending Class B champion York to a scoreless tie in their finale Tuesday to earn a home prelim. After a year away from the playoffs, Cape Elizabeth hosts Deering Friday at 3:30 p.m. for the first time since a 2-0 preliminary round win in the 2004 playoffs. The Capers are 5-1 all-time versus the Rams in the postseason.

South Portland did not qualify. The Red Riots did finish strong with road victories over Portland (2-1) and Marshwood. Sophomore Jenacee Bradbury and senior Amanda Linscott had goals against the Bulldogs. Sophomore Jenna Wing had the winner versus the Hawks. South Portland’s 6-7-1 mark left it 13th in the 19-team region, but only 10 teams made the playoffs.

In Western D, GPCS fell short after finishing 4-6-1, good for fifth in the seven-team region (where only four teams made the cut).

Cross country

The cross country regular season came to a close last week. Scarborough hosted Bonny Eagle, Gorham, Westbrook and Windham. The Red Storm’s boys’ team, ranked first in the latest coaches’ poll was first, while the girls came in third.

South Portland joined Deering, McAuley and Portland at Cheverus. The Red Riots came in second in the girls’ race and third on the boys’ side.

Next up is the regional championships Saturday at Twin Brook in Cumberland. Teams in the top half of each region qualify for the state meet. The Western B boys’ race, featuring fifth-ranked Cape Elizabeth, starts at 10 a.m. The Western B girls (Cape Elizabeth is second to Cheverus in the coaches’ poll) go at 10:35 a.m. Scarborough and South Portland’s boys take part in the Western A meet at 12:20 p.m. The girls begin at 12:55 p.m.

The state meets are Saturday, Oct. 30, in Belfast.

Volleyball

Scarborough’s volleyball team went 7-7 in the regular season and wound up sixth in Class A, going to No. 3 Falmouth (a state finalist a year ago) for Wednesday night’s quarterfinal round. The Red Storm’s season came to a close at 7-8 after a 3-0 (19-25, 17-25, 20-25) setback.

Cape Elizabeth finished 1-13 and did not qualify for the playoffs.

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

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