As colder weather and an extra hour of darkness become an unpleasant fact of life, another sure sign that the nice part of autumn is winding down is that just a few fall sports teams remain in the playoffs.
Here’s a glimpse:
Brunswick’s football team, the No. 1 seed in Eastern Class B after a 6-2 regular season, had a bye last week, but will host No. 5 Skowhegan (5-4) in a semifinal round contest Friday evening. The Dragons handled visiting Skowhegan, 47-26, back on Sept. 27.
If Brunswick advances, it will host either No. 2 Cony (6-2) or No. 3 Messalonskee (6-3) in the regional final Nov. 15 or 16.
The Class B Final is Friday, Nov. 22 in Orono.
In Western B, Morse and Mt. Ararat were both one-and-done.
The Eagles, ranked seventh after their best season in years (4-4) had the daunting task of going to No. 2 York in the quarterfinals Friday. Mt. Ararat lost at York, 34-0, back on Oct. 4 and despite taking an early lead in the playoff contest, the Eagles went down to a 35-6 defeat to finish 4-5.
The Shipbuilders were 3-5 in the regular season and earned the eighth and final Western B spot, but were no match for undefeated, top-ranked Kennebunk (which romped, 50-7, in Bath Oct. 11) in the quarterfinals, losing, 48-6, to finish 3-6.
Mt. Ararat’s girls’ soccer team, the No. 2 seed in Eastern A, made a trip to top-ranked, three-time defending regional champion Bangor for the regional final Wednesday. The Eagles advanced by virtue of wins over No. 7 Cony (1-0, on Erin Tome’s goal in overtime) and No. 3 Hampden Academy (2-1). In the regular season, Mt. Ararat suffered a 1-0 loss at Bangor Sept. 28.
If the Eagles, advanced, they’d meet either Windham (15-0-1) or Thornton Academy (14-1-1) in the state final Saturday at 10 a.m., at McCann Field in Bath.
Brunswick, the fourth-ranked team in Eastern A, beat No. 5 Oxford Hills, 4-0, in the quarterfinals, but was eliminated Saturday by No. 1 Bangor, 1-0, as its season ended at 10-5-1.
In Western B, Morse wound up with the No. 3 seed, but was quickly ousted by No. 6 York, 5-1, to finish 9-4-2. Sophie Sreden had the goal.
The boys’ soccer season came to a close last week.
Mt. Ararat, the No. 4 seed in Eastern A, downed No. 5 Edward Little, 5-2, in the quarterfinals, but Saturday, the Eagles were eliminated by top-ranked Hampden Academy, 2-0, to finish 10-4-2.
Brunswick, ranked sixth, was ousted, 3-0, by No. 3 Bangor in the quarterfinals to wind up 8-7.
Brunswick’s girls’ cross country team was the only local squad to compete at the state championships Saturday at Twin Brook Recreation Center in Cumberland.
The Dragons tallied 127 points to finish fourth (Bonny Eagle was the champion with 82). Brunswick’s top finisher was Tessa Cassidy (12th on the 5-kilometer course in 20 minutes, 47.04 seconds). Teresa Murphy was right behind in 14th (20:59.16).
Mt. Ararat’s Kelly Lynch ran as an individual and had the 38th-best time (22:08.68). Teammate Amy Segars was 47th (22:30.26).
In the boys’ Class A meet, won by Lewiston, neither Brunswick or Mt. Ararat qualified as a team, but did send individuals. Mt. Ararat’s Sam Wood placed 15th (17:25.61). Teammate Matt Gott was 27th (17:50.17) and Nathan Mackenzie finished 48th (18:20.66). Brunswick’s Christopher Tanner came in 41st (18:15.14) and teammate Jason Higginbotham placed 43rd (18:15.54).
In Class B (where Cape Elizabeth won the boys’ title and Mt. Desert Island took the girls’ championship), Morse had a couple individuals take part. Christopher Walfield came in 21st in the boys’ meet (17:53.51). In the girls’ race, Amy Franklin was 36th (22:13.09) and Kelsea Albertson placed 40th (22:15.99).
The season ends Saturday with the New England championships in Manchester, N.H. Brunswick’s Cassidy qualified as an individual, while Murphy just missed.
Mt. Ararat’s Matt Gott and Brunswick’s Christopher Tanner run as individuals during Saturday’s Class A state cross country meet. Gott finished with the 27th-best time, while Tanner had the 41st.
Morse’s Kelsey Albertson heads toward a 40th-place individual finish in the Class B girls’ state cross country meet.