Fall sports season commences
(Ed. Note: For the complete versions of the Cape Elizabeth-Falmouth girls' soccer and Cape Elizabeth-Falmouth and Scarborough-Westbrook field hockey games, please visit theforecaster.net)
And we're off.
Another fall sports season began last week and early results suggest that local athletes and teams are in for plenty of triumph.
Not quite every squad had begun play at press time, but most were underway.
Here's a glimpse:
They met on Sept. 1, but the game could have been played at the end of October.
Saturday's regular season opener between the perennial powerhouse Scarborough boys' soccer team and host Red Riots of South Portland was memorable and when 90 minutes had elapsed, nothing had been settled.
Twice the Red Storm took the lead and twice the Red Riots got off the deck and answered. Scarborough went ahead, 1-0, on a goal from senior Austin Downing (from classmate Trevor Sparda), but freshman Ahmed Suja set up senior Damjan Draskovic to make it 1-1 at halftime. With 10 minutes to go, junior Sam Cekada's tally appeared to send the Red Storm on its way to victory, but a minute later, Suja set up senior Dillon Burns, who finished to forge a 2-2 draw, which was how the game ended. South Portland senior goalkeeper Ben Burkey stopped nine shots. Scarborough junior goalkeeper Pat Stanton made four saves.
Since the teams began playing in 2003, this was the first time the Red Riots had achieved a positive result (tie or win) against the Red Storm. The previous 10 meetings (including a playoff contest in 2009) had all gone Scarborough's way to the composite tune of 30-2.
"The game was incredible," said South Portland coach Bryan Hoy. "Our defense really played well. (Senior) Caleb Elsemore controlled the middle of the field and deflected the Scarborough attack time and time again. (Junior) Calvin Cronin was outstanding in the back as well in his first varsity start. Ben Burkey had a few saves down the stretch that kept us in the game. I was shocked that we were able to come back not once, but twice, scoring the game tying goal a minute after they went ahead 2-1. Ahmed Suja assisted two goals and was a huge lift off our bench. I felt we had lost the game three minutes in when Austin Downing scored, but my boys never gave up and kept fighting. It's a huge result for our program, as they are our geographical rivals and historically the best program in our conference. It was huge for our confidence, getting a tie against a top team to start the season. I thought we would struggle out the gate with so many new faces in our lineup, but apparently I was wrong."
The Red Riots didn't suffer a letdown Tuesday as they improved to 2-0 with a 7-1 home victory over Massabesic behind a hat trick from Burns. Suja, sophomore Max Carr, senior Ryan Pelletier and sophomore Andrew Whipple also scored. South Portland was at Biddeford Thursday and visits Westbrook Tuesday of next week.
The Red Storm got their first victory Tuesday, 7-0, over visiting Marshwood. Junior Wyatt Omsberg scored twice. Also scoring were Downing, junior Mike Caryl, senior Chris Cleary, junior Charlie Mader and senior John Wheeler. Sparda added three assists. Scarborough has a home showdown with Gorham Saturday (11 a.m.), visits Portland Tuesday and is back home next Thursday versus Cheverus.
Cape Elizabeth suffered a 1-0 loss at defending Class B state champion Falmouth in its opener. The Capers evened their record at 1-1 Tuesday with a 1-0 home win over Fryeburg on sophomore Cole Caswell's tally. Cape Elizabeth goes to Yarmouth Saturday and plays host to York Tuesday.
Greater Portland Christian School opens Friday at Rangeley. The Lions are at Pine Tree Academy Monday.
On the girls' side, preseason favorite Scarborough had little trouble with visiting South Portland in the teams' mutual opener. The Red Storm prevailed, 4-0, as senior Sarah Martens scored twice and senior Kate Daniels and junior Hadlee Yescott also tickled the twine. Scarborough looked to improve to 2-0 when it went to Marshwood Wednesday. After a Saturday showdown at Gorham, the Red Storm is home with Portland Wednesday.
In the opening loss to Scarborough, the Red Riots did get 12 saves from sophomore goalkeeper Emma Russell. South Portland hoped to get in the win column Wednesday at Massabesic. The Red Riots host Biddeford Saturday.
Cape Elizabeth played a thriller in its opener, but fell at home to two-time defending Class B champion Falmouth, 2-1. The Yachtsmen scored twice in the first half, but the Capers never buckled. They cut the deficit to 2-1 on senior Talley Perkins' goal with 28 minutes to go and had some golden opportunities to draw even, but Falmouth senior goalkeeper Caroline Lucas frustrated them and the Yachtsmen held on to win.
"The first half we probably outpossessed them 60-40, at least and we had three or four good chances in the second half to tie it up," Cape Elizabeth coach Luke Krawczyk said. "I think we outperformed the opposition today, but they got the result. It's a long season, hopefully we get the result next time. They're all tough. Hopefully we'll get better. We wanted a performance today and the performance was very good. We could have easily tied it or won it."
Tuesday, the Capers got in the win column with a 4-0 victory at Fryeburg. Sophomore Kathryn Clark scored twice, while juniors Sydney Wight and Addison Wood also had goals. Perkins assisted on two of the goals. Cape Elizabeth hosts Yarmouth Friday and goes to York Tuesday of next week.
GPCS opens at Rangeley Friday and goes to Pine Tree Academy Tuesday.
Scarborough's field hockey is, as expected, leading the way in the early going in Western Class A. The Red Storm had no trouble with visiting McAuley in the opener, rolling, 10-0, behind two goals from senior Ellen Walker and one apiece from seniors Emily Bunting, Karli-An Gilbert, Ali Pelczar and Grace Whalen, juniors Maggie Carbin, Sarah Huber and Rachael Wallace and sophomore Abby Walker. After a 7-0 victory at Bonny Eagle, Scarborough hosted perennial contender Westbrook in its first test Wednesday night.
The Red Storm passed, thanks to jumping to an early lead on sophomore Maddie Dobecki's goal just 80 seconds in. Later in the first half, Abby Walker scored and the Scarborough defense did the rest, allowing just three shots, as it went on to a 2-0 win to improve to 3-0.
"The past two games we did really good, so the energy of those games carried through to this one," said Dobecki. "It was a scramble in front of the net. (The ball) came to me and I just shot it. It's really good to start out your best."
"It's always nice to get (the other team) on their heels," said Red Storm coach Kerry Mariello. "We wanted to take it to them and make them play catch up. We were in a good situation. Westbrook always comes ready to play and we knew that. We knew we had to play our 'A' game."
Scarborough (which has already produced 12 different goal scorers) hosts Portland Tuesday in its next outing.
"We still need work, but who doesn't?" Mariello added. "We 're doing a lot of good things. It's a matter of building and continuing to grow. We're a true team. There's no outstanding one player."
South Portland fell in its opener, 3-0, at Westbrook. Senior goalie Lani Edwards made nine saves. The Red Riots balanced their record at 1-1 Wednesday with a 2-0 home win over Portland. Junior Kristina Salafia (on a penalty corner) and sophomore Courtney Pelkey (from senior Kailey Hannigan) scored the goals.
"It's nice to come out with a win early," said South Portland coach Leslie Dyer. "We played out strong against Westbrook. Our goal is to finish the ball. We did today and that felt good. We had good spacing. The girls came out and wanted it. This year, the girls are prepared. They want to be in the playoffs. I have a nice, solid defense. Thanks to sophomore Michelle Medici's two defensive saves, they didn't score. We have a much smaller group this season. It's confidence and drive. We've come out stronger."
The Red Riots welcome Massabesic Friday and go to defending regional champion Marshwood Tuesday.
"If we can put the ball in the net, we can certainly be right there," Dyer said.
Cape Elizabeth romped in its opener, 8-0, at Gray-New Gloucester, as senior Lauren Steidl and sophomore Aubrey O'Meara both had two goals. The Capers had their home opener versus Falmouth Friday and despite eight penalty corner opportunities, were shutout, 3-0.
"We had plenty of chances," said Cape Elizabeth coach Darci Holland. "We didn't take hard enough shots on goal. We need to finish. It didn't happen today. I thought it was an evenly matched game. We didn't mark as well as we should have. It's a lesson learned."
The Capers were stymied again Tuesday in a 1-0 home loss to reigning Western B champion York. Cape Elizabeth was at Wells Thursday, then is idle until next Wednesday when it hosts Traip.
The cross country season began last weekend as Cape Elizabeth joined Gray-New Gloucester at Sacopee. The Capers were the only girls' team to score and they won the meet. Senior Ellen Best was the top individual with a time of 22 minutes, 21 seconds. The boys were second to Gray-New Gloucester. Junior Liam Simpson finished second in 17:55.
Cape Elizabeth hosts Freeport, Lake Region, Traip and Wells Friday.
Scarborough and South Portland partook in the SMAA Relays. The Red Storm took first in the boys' team competition.
The regular season opens Friday when South Portland (joined by Massabesic) goes to Scarborough.
Cape Elizabeth's golf team defeated Fryeburg and Poland by 7-0 scores to start the year, then suffered a 4-3 loss at the hands of rival Yarmouth.
Scarborough opened with an 8-5 loss to defending Class A champion Falmouth.
South Portland's first match resulted in a 10.5-2.5 loss to Deering. The next time out, the Red Riots fell to Portland, 11-2.
Scarborough's volleyball team, a state finalist a year ago, opened its 2012 season Friday with a 3-0 (25-12, 25-11, 25-13) victory at Windham. Tuesday, the Red Storm made it two in a row with a 3-0 (25-5, 25-6, 25-9) home win over Kennebunk. Scarborough was at Biddeford (coming off a win over defending state champion Greely) Thursday and hosts first-year program Cheverus Monday.
Cape Elizabeth opened with a 3-0 loss at Biddeford (9-25, 15-25, 12-25) and fell, 3-0, to visiting Gorham (20-25, 11-25, 17-25). The Capers sought their first win Thursday at Yarmouth. Monday, they host Lake Region.