Scarborough girls make it 15 straight with win at Yarmouth
SCARBOROUGH—Almost a year to the day of its last defeat, the Scarborough girls' lacrosse team got a small measure of revenge and increased its two-year win streak to 15 games Saturday afternoon.
The two-time defending Class A state champion Red Storm got the better of reigning Class B champ Yarmouth, turning the tables on the Clippers from last season with a 12-5 victory.
Scarborough shot to a quick 3-0 lead and never looked back, riding its prolific, balanced offensive attack led by seniors Kelsey Howard, Mary Scott and Maggie Smith, who combined for 10 goals, along with some timely saves from junior Meg Kirsch, to improve to 3-0 on the year, dropping Yarmouth to 0-3 in the process.
"We're playing really, really well together," Scott said. "We expected that though. The key is to go into every game like it's our first game. Not that we won two championships, but play like we don't know the other team. (Yarmouth) lost a lot of seniors and we kept all of ours. We came in knowing they'd be a good team, but we're pumped to beat them."
Both Scarborough and Yarmouth reached the pinnacle in 2011.
The Red Storm made it two Class A crowns in succession by holding off Brunswick in the state game, 13-11.
The Clippers won their first Class B title since 2007 by holding off Waynflete, 9-8.
The champions are off to very different starts in 2012.
The Red Storm, which returned an abundance of talent, had no trouble with visiting McAuley (13-0) or Bonny Eagle (16-3) in its first two outings.
Saturday, Scarborough was tested by the Clippers, but had too much firepower to be denied.
The Red Storm won the opening draw and just 65 seconds into the game took the lead for good when Smith scored unassisted.
With 22:45 to play in the first half, Smith struck again (this time assisted by Scott) and it was 2-0.
The third goal came a mere 20 seconds later, when, after another draw win, Scott got in the scoring column with an unassisted tally, firing a shot past Clippers first-year sophomore goalie Jordan Brown.
"Having a good start always pumps me up to keep going and do better," Scott said.
Yarmouth got on the board with 19:44 to go in the half when senior Caitlin Crawford, who's been a standout for the Clippers so far this spring, took a pass from senior Mo McNaboe and beat Kirsch.
Yarmouth cut the deficit to 3-2 with 17:08 left when, in transition, sophomore Grace O'Donnell passed to senior Maddy Wood for a goal.
Scarborough would close the half on a 6-0 run to seize full control.
Howard scored unassisted with 14:31 showing to get the surge started. A minute later, Scott took a pass from Smith and finished. With 10:39 to play in the half, junior Jess Meader scored unassisted and it was 6-2, forcing Clippers coach Dorothy Holt to call timeout.
It didn't stem the tide.
Scott scored on a rebound with 10:19 left, Howard set up senior Laura Przybylowicz for a goal with 3:22 to go and with 1:29 remaining, Howard scored on a free position to make it 9-2 Red Storm at the half.
Howard and Przybylowicz combined to win seven of 12 first half draws. Scarborough had a 17-5 edge in shots on goal.
Early in the second half, the Red Storm pushed its lead to 11-2 as Scott and Smith both scored unassisted, but the Clippers hung tough and prevented Scarborough from taking a 10-goal lead, which would have induced a running clock.
With 12:45 to play, Yarmouth senior Claudia Lockwood scored on a free position to cut the deficit to 11-3 and allow the Clippers to score more than twice in a game for the first time this spring.
With 9:59 remaining, Howard scored unassisted for the Red Storm's final tally.
With 3:41 left, Yarmouth senior Ricki Pierce scored unassisted. Lockwood did the same 28 seconds later and that accounted for the 12-5 final score.
"I was excited for the rematch today," Scarborough coach Marcia Wood said. "When you hear the name Yarmouth, you always get excited to come here and play."
Scarborough's offense has so many facets that it's almost impossible to stop.
Scott had four goals, but Howard and Smith did plenty of damage of their own, each scoring three times. Meader and Przybylowicz also tickled the twine.
"There are so many girls on our team who can score," said Scott. "That makes our offense so much better and more developed. We can depend on everyone."
"We have such an explosive offense, between Maggie, Mary, Kelsey and Laura," Wood said. "We have some new ones, (junior) Maiti Kent and Jess Meader, who are attacking the goal more, which is nice."
Howard, Scott and Smith all had one assist apiece. Kirsch stopped seven shots.
"Meg's stepped up the past two years," said Scott. "The defense has been so strong."
"Meg hasn't been challenged," Wood said. "You zone out back there when you don't get pressure. I'm glad she saw some shots and got confident again."
The Red Storm won 12 of 19 draws, as Howard triumphed on 11 of 14 chances, Przybylowicz went 1 for 3 and junior Sam Nable lost both of her opportunities.
Scarborough finished with a 50-35 advantage on ground balls, as Smith led the way with eight and Howard and Scott both grabbed seven. Senior defensive standout Shauni Cowan, junior Sarah Martens and Przybylowicz all finished with four.
The Red Storm had 24 turnovers, but finished with a 30-17 advantage in shots on goal (23-12 on cage).
For Yarmouth, Lockwood scored twice, while Crawford, Pierce and Wood each had one goal. McNaboe and O'Donnell had assists. Brown made 11 saves. Pierce went 6 of 13 on draws. Lockwood finished 1 of 3, O'Donnell 0 of 2 and senior Jeanna Lowery 0 for 1. Crawford led the Clippers with eight ground balls.
"Caitlin is really stepping up as a leader," said Holt. "She's just leading the team to the level we need to be. She, Jeanna and Claudia are really the only returners from last year."
Brown and Lowery each grabbed four ground balls. Yarmouth turned the ball over 23 times.
"We're just turning the ball over way too many times," Holt said. "We finally broke the two goal barrier. The girls are stepping up. They played with a little more confidence going to goal. It's going to get there. The girls are playing so hard. It's awesome to see them work. They're doing the right things."
Yarmouth's quest for its first victory gets no easier.
The Clippers have to go to unbeaten Falmouth Monday. They then visit dangerous Cape Elizabeth Friday as the most difficult opening schedule stretch you'll find finally comes to an end.
"Monday's a big game for us," Holt said. "We just need to be scrappier and get more balls to bounce our way."
Scarborough's good times figure to keep rolling as it goes to South Portland Monday.
The Red Storm will have some challenges down the road.
"We still have Cape, TA, Marshwood, Massabesic and Kennebunk," said Wood. "There will be some games that will give us pressure and make us work harder with passing and accuracy."
"We have to practice as much as we can," Scott said. "Overall, we need to work on everything and make sure we keep working together as a team. It's been going great."