Local teams looking good at midway point of regular season-Portland edition

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Cheverus’ Haylee Hinkle collides with Thornton Academy goalie Madison Vachon during the Stags’ 2-0 victory last week.

With Deering sophomore Rebekah Dunn waiting on the doorstep, Portland sophomore goalie Rose Stait stands tall as Rams senior Alyssa Staples battles for possession with Bulldogs senior Nettie Walsh during Deering’s 2-1 win Monday.

(Ed. Note: For the complete Cheverus-Thornton Academy girls’ soccer and Cheverus-Thornton Academy and Deering-Portland field hockey game stories, see theforecaster.net)

The midway point of the fall sports season has come and gone and for local squads, every outing the rest of the way has major stakes.

Here’s a look at the week that was and a glimpse at what’s to come, as Heal Points come into play for the first time.

Football

Portland’s football team got back on track Friday evening in Lewiston, bouncing back from last weekend’s 24-7 loss at Bonny Eagle with a 28-14 victory to improve to 3-1 at the season’s midway point. After a scoreless first quarter, the Bulldogs took control in the second thanks to a 70-yard punt return for a score by Ben Stasium and Zack Elowitch’s first touchdown run. In the third period, Elowitch scored again and in the fourth quarter, Elowitch added another touchdown run. The Blue Devils scored two TDs late, but it wasn’t enough. Elowitch finished with 122 yards and three scores. Portland (first in the Class A North Heals) returns to Fitzpatrick Stadium Friday to welcome 2-2 Edward Little (see theforecaster.net for game story).

Cheverus and Deering met in a countable game Friday for the first time since 2014 and the Stags finished strong to prevail, 31-18. In the first quarter, Sean Tompkins got free for a 64-yard touchdown and Ian Trafford added a five-yard TD scamper for a 14-0 Cheverus lead. A 1-yard touchdown run from Travis Soule pulled the Rams within eight at halftime. In the third period, Soule scored on a 45-yard run, then quarterback James Opio threw a 56-yard scoring pass to Ben Onek for an 18-14 lead, but Vick Marrone scored on a 69-yard pass from Marc Reali to put the Stags back ahead to stay, 21-18, heading for the fourth quarter. There, Cheverus added two points when Deering hiked the ball out of the end zone and a 60-yard Tompkins run iced it as the Stags improved to 3-1 and dropped the Rams to 1-3 in the process.

“We got a feeling for what they were doing,” said Cheverus coach Mike Vance.

“That’s what happens when you have 19 new starters,” Deering first-year coach Rob Susi said. “We’re a young team that played a well-coached program.”

Cheverus (third in Class A North) is home against 3-1 Oxford Hills Saturday (see theforecaster.net for game story).

Deering (fifth in Class A South) goes to 4-0 Bonny Eagle Friday night.

Boys’ soccer

Cheverus boys’ soccer team began the week 5-1-1 and third behind Gorham and Kennebunk in the Class A South Heals at press time following wins last week at Sanford (4-2) and at home over Westbrook (5-2). Jack Mullen scored three goals and Michael Nason added one in the win over the Spartans. Against the Blue Blazes, Mullen scored three more goals and Owen Burke and Ethan Hammond also tickled the twine. The Stags were at Marshwood Tuesday, welcome Deering Thursday and visit South Portland Tuesday of next week.

Portland was in the No. 7 spot in A South at 2-2-3 following a scoreless home tie against Bonny Eagle last Tuesday. The Bulldogs had a 17-1 shots advantage, but couldn’t finish. After playing at Sanford Tuesday, Portland welcomes Westbrook Friday (see theforecaster.net for game story) and travels to Marshwood Tuesday of next week.

Deering was 4-3 and 10th in A South following a 2-0 home win over Kennebunk and a 1-0 setback at Windham last week. In the victory, Carlo DeMucci and Francis Matonga scored the goals. After hosting Falmouth Tuesday (see theforecaster.net for game story), the Rams go to Cheverus Thursday and welcome Bonny Eagle Tuesday of next week.

In Class C South, Waynflete began the week 4-0-2 and fourth in the Heals following a 2-1 home victory over St. Dom’s and a 1-1 tie at Class B South power Cape Elizabeth. In the win, Askar Houssen scored both goals as the Flyers came from behind. Pat Shaw had the goal against the Capers. Waynflete was at Traip Academy Tuesady, hosts North Yarmouth Academy Thursday (see theforecaster.net for game story) and welcomes Wells Tuesday of next week.

Girls’ soccer

Cheverus’ girls’ team continues to impress. Last week, the Stags improved to 7-1 with wins at Westbrook (8-0) and at home over Thornton Academy (2-1). In the win over the Blue Blazes, Emma Gallant, Julia Kratzer and Mia Kratzer each scored two goals and Helena Bolduc and Caroline Taylor had one goal apiece. Against the Golden Trojans, Zoe Mazur scored a first half goal, when she converted off a Lauren Jordan throw, and in the second half, Gallant scored. Cheverus held off a late Golden Trojans’ rally to extend its win streak to four games. 

“We had to communicate and keep our shape to hold them off,” Mazur said. “We have good team chemistry and work well together.”

“We have to take it game-by-game,” Gallant said. “We just want to go as far as we can.”

“We pushed back and we held them off,” added Cheverus coach Craig Roberts. “We showed some resiliency which is good to see as a coach.”

The Stags (third in the Class A South Heals at press time) go to Bonny Eagle Wednesday and visit Deering Friday.

Deering began the week 1-6 and 15th in A South after its skid hit six games last week with home losses to Scarborough (4-0) and Sanford (3-1). Against the Red Storm, Gianna Charest made 18 saves. Mia Sargent scored in the loss to the Spartans. The Rams are at Massabesic Wednesday and host Cheverus Friday.

Portland dropped a 4-3 decision at Windham, then improved to 3-4 and 11th Saturday with a 2-0 win at South Portland. Against the Eagles, Tori Stevenson had two goals and Isabella More added one. In the victory, Stevenson converted a penalty kick and Samira Doiron also scored. The Bulldogs host Falmouth Wednesday and go to Westbrook Friday.

In Class C South, Waynflete was 1-5 and 15th in the Heals following a 4-2 loss at St. Dom’s, a 5-0 home setback to powerhouse Cape Elizabeth and a 4-0 loss at Greely. Devan Sherry and Sophie Sangster had the goals against the Saints. Jesse Connors made 11 saves against the Capers and stopped nine shots against the Rangers. The Flyers hosted Traip Academy Tuesday, go to NYA Thursday and welcome Gray-New Gloucester Saturday.

Field hockey

Cheverus’ field hockey team was 4-4 and seventh in the Class A South Heals following wins at Falmouth (3-2) and at home over Thornton Academy (2-0) and a 2-1 loss at Sanford. Against the Yachtsmen, Paige DeGeorge, Haylee Hinkle and Sophia Pompeo scored goals. Lucia Pompeo scored twice in the win over the Golden Trojans.

“We were a little frustrated in the first half,” Lucia Pompeo said. “We had all the momentum going our way but we couldn’t finish. We picked it up in the second half and finished.”

“I think we dominated, but it wasn’t our best game,” said Cheverus coach Sally Cloutier. “But it doesn’t matter. A win is a win. It’s coming together. We have great chemistry and the kids are having fun. They’re working hard.” 

Sophia Pompeo had the lone goal in the loss to the Spartans. The Stags hosted Portland Tuesday, go to defending Class A South champion Westbrook Thursday and host Marshwood Monday of next week (see theforecaster.net for game story).

Deering took a 1-7 mark into Monday’s home tilt versus rival Portland (see theforecaster.net for game story). Last week, the Rams sandwiched losses at Westbrook (6-1) and Scarborough (3-0) around a 4-3 home win over Marshwood. Against the Blue Blazes, Liz Drelich had Deering’s goal. In the victory, Alyssa Staple scored twice, while Drelich and Donna Thach had one goal apiece. The Rams (13th in A South) host Noble Thursday and go to Bonny Eagle Monday of next week.

Portland took a 0-5-1 mark and the No. 17 ranking into Monday’ game at Deering. Last week, the Bulldogs dropped 3-1 decisions to visiting Noble and host Bonny Eagle, then settled for a 2-2 home tie against Windham. Emma Harrigan scored against the Knights. In the tie, Jaidyn Appel and Carly Hagelin had first half goals, but Portland couldn’t hold on. The Bulldogs went to Cheverus Tuesday, host Kennebunk Thursday and travel to Massabesic Monday of next week.

Volleyball

Deering’s volleyball team was 5-2 and fifth in the Class A Heals at press time following a five-set (18-25, 25-7, 25-18, 20-25, 15-11) home win over Windham and a straight-set (21-25, 22-25, 22-25) loss at Gorham. Maddy Broda had 36 assists and Victoria Garand added nine saves against the Eagles. The Rams went to Cheverus Tuesday, host Bonny Eagle Thursday and welcome Massabesic Tuesday of next week.

Cheverus was 3-4 and eighth in Class A following a five-set (21-25, 20-25, 25-16, 25-21, 15-5) home win over Marshwood, a straight-set (23-25, 23-25, 16-25) loss at South Portland and a four-set (25-23, 17-25, 25-13, 25-20) victory at Thornton Academy last week. Maddie Geiger had nine kills in the win over the Golden Trojans. The Stags hosted Deering Tuesday, welcome Yarmouth Thursday and go to Bonny Eagle Tuesday of next week.

Portland fell to 1-5 and 12th in Class A after a four-set (18-25, 25-23, 19-25, 21-25) home loss to Bonny Eagle and a three-set (9-25, 9-25, 20-25) home loss to Biddeford last week. Elsa DiGiovanni had 16 digs and Kiera Eubanks added six kills against the Scots. The Bulldogs hosted Thornton Academy Tuesday, visit South Portland Thursday and defending Class B champion Cape Elizabeth Saturday, then return home Tuesday of next week to meet Marshwood.

Cross Country

Deering’s boys’ cross country team took part at the Manchester (New Hampshire) Invitational Saturday. The Rams were 29th out of 40 scoring schools in the large division (Bishop Hendricken High School of Rhode Island placed first). Deering was led, as usual, by standout Alec Troxell, who had the 29th-best time on the 5,000-meter course, 16 minutes, 49 seconds.

Deering also took part in a league meet at Bonny Eagle Friday, joining Falmouth and Westbrook. The Rams boys were second to the Yachtsmen and were led by Jerry Mixangelo (third, 17:16). Deering’s girls placed third and were paced by Olivia Pfaff (ninth, 22:48).

Cheverus ran with Scarborough, Thornton Academy and Windham at Kennebunk. The Stags girls finished third. Rosie Train was fifth individually (21:23.24). Cheverus’ boys were fourth, as William Herman (12th, 18:00.17) led the way. The Red Storm placed first as a team in both genders.

Portland joined Gorham, Massabesic and South Portland at Biddeford. The Bulldogs boys were first, as Liam Niles had the second-best individual time (17:37). Portland’s girls finished second to the Rams. Inez Braceras was second individually (22:13).

Waynflete ran with Old Orchard Beach, Poland and Sacopee Valley at St. Dom’s. The Flyers boys were first and were led by Henry Spritz (second individually in 17:34.32). Waynflete’s girls also placed first and were led by individual runner-up Anna Wildes (21:50.67).

Friday, Deering joins Biddeford and Kennebunk at Noble and Waynflete runs with Poland, Traip Academy and Wells at Lake Region. The Festival of Champions meet is Saturday in Belfast.

Golf

Portland’s golf team lost last week to Falmouth (7.5-5.5) and Cheverus (12.5-0.5), then improved to 2-6 after a 13-0 win over South Portland. In the match against the Yachtsmen, Jake Luce had a team-best, nine-hole round of 41. Jacob Loranger’s 39 was the team low against the Stags. In the victory, Luce (41) was the medalist. After hosting Deering Tuesday, the Bulldogs close the regular season at Falmouth Thursday.

Cheverus defeated Portland (12.5-0.5) and South Portland (11-2), before falling, 11.5-1.5 to defending Class A champion last week to fall to 4-3. Against the Bulldogs, Tom Higgins (35) was the medalist. Higgins (39) was also the medalist versus the Red Riots. In the loss, Higgins shot a team-best round of 38. The Stags had a makeup match at Deering Monday, were at Falmouth Tuesday and close the regular season Thursday at home versus South Portland.

Deering’s “Fighting Four” dropped a 10-3 decision to Falmouth last week to fall to 2-4. Nick McGonagle’s round of 48 was the best on the team. The Rams hosted Cheverus in a makeup match Monday, visit Portland Tuesday, host South Portland in a makeup match Wednesday, then close at home versus Scarborough Thursday.

The girls’ state meet qualifier was Monday. The team state qualifier is Monday, Oct. 1.

Press Herald staff writer Kevin Thomas contributed to this story.

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

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