Playoffs galore in Forecaster country

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(Editor’s note: For the complete Falmouth-Yarmouth and Yarmouth-York boys’ soccer and Greely-Falmouth volleyball game/match stories, please see theforecaster.net)

If the postseason is your thing, you’ll have no shortage of excitement over the next couple weeks.

While field hockey’s playoffs are underway and football enters the final week of the regular season (please see stories), volleyball’s postseason has begun, cross country’s regional meets are Saturday, golf’s season has completed and soccer’s playoffs are due to begin this weekend.

Here’s a glimpse at where things stand as we make the turn into the latter half of October.

Golf

The golf season is finished after individual championships were handed out Saturday at Natanis Golf Course in Vassalboro.

The biggest local news came in the girls’ division as Yarmouth’s Monica Austin and Greely’s Edith Aromando and Sarah Hansen tied for second after shooting a 91 (Fort Kent’s Ali Prescott won with an 87). Yarmouth’s Jordan Brown (98) tied for seventh place. Teammate Emily Lunt tied for 23rd with a 109. Grace King qualified, but wasn’t able to take part.

On the boys’ side, in Class A, Will Bucklin, of state champion Falmouth, tied for third with a 77 (Deering’s Joe Walp and Sanford’s Ben Bell were co-champs with a 75). Bucklin’s teammate, Matt Packard, shot an 86 and tied for 18th. Greely’s Kyle Megathlin tied for 15th with an 84.

In Class B, Yarmouth’s Red Desmith and Nick Lainey each shot an 83 to tie for 13th place (Lincoln Academy’s Oliver Malcom was first with a 73). Cal Cooper and Ethan Andrews both shot 90 and wound up in a tie for 22nd.

Two players from North Yarmouth Academy competed in Class C. George Doolan tied for 15th with an 86. Nolan Weston (88) came in 18th. Madison’s Seth Sweet (70) was the winner.

While Falmouth won the Class A team title on Oct. 10, Yarmouth was runner-up in Class B. That day, the Clippers had Desmith shoot 81, Cooper 82, Lainey 86 and Andrews 89. Austin shot from the white tees and shot a 96.

“I’m really proud of the team and the individual players this fall,” said Yarmouth coach Tom McDowell. “Sending eight players to the individual championships and finishing second at the team championships is a testament to the hard work the kids put in this year. We played consistently all year. Nothing flashy, just solid team golf. Finishing as the runner-up in Class B is a significant accomplishment for us and is our best finish since we moved to Class B about 20 years ago.”

Cross Country

The Western Maine Conference cross country championship meet was held last weekend. It was originally scheduled for Friday at Community Park in Falmouth, but poor conditions postponed the meet and it was held Saturday afternoon at St. Joseph’s College in Standish.

The Division I title went to Falmouth (ranked first in the latest coaches’ poll), which had 37 points. Fourth-ranked Greely (77) was runner-up and No. 9 Freeport (79) came in third. Individually, the Yachtsmen placed four runners in the top 10, led by Tim Follo, who was first in 16 minutes, 38.21 seconds. Thomas Edmonds was fifth, Jay Lesser ninth and Henry Briggs 10th.

“The boys were led by a great run from Tim,” said Falmouth co-coach Jorma Kurry. “Thomas was strong as well and Henry ran his best race of the season to date.”

“Our boys ran well, particularly Tim and Henry,” added co-coach Danny Paul. “Overall, we continue to be able to count on our depth from our No. 2 through No. 7 runners, which is a real strength in larger meets. I do not feel through seven runners we ran our best race overall, which gives us something to shoot for the next two weeks.”

The Rangers were led by runner-up Stefan Sandreuter and third-place finisher Nate Madeira. The Falcons had Taylor Saucier come in eighth.

In Division II, NYA (third in the coaches’ poll) was first with 36 points. Merriconeag (96) placed fourth, while Yarmouth (137) came in fifth. Individually, the Panthers were paced by Cam Regan, who was third in 17:20.49. Other top 10 finishers included Rudy Guiliani (fifth), Evan Kendall (seventh) and Alex Coffin (ninth).

“I was very pleased with how well we ran,” said NYA coach Peter Sillin. “The guys executed their race strategies quite well and now that everyone is back to being healthy, we’re really looking forward to the next couple of weeks. Cam, Rudy and Evan provided the kind of leadership the team has relied on for years. Alex is a great talent and his run showed he has guts too. I think we probably have the deepest seven in Class C this year. I’m hopeful that we’re peaking at the right time.”

Merriconeag’s top finisher was Jack Pierce, who was second. The Clippers top finisher was Braden Becker (sixth).

On the girls’ side, in Division I, Falmouth (seventh in the coaches’ poll) had 58 points, but was second by 10 to Cape Elizabeth. Greely (62) came in third and Freeport (125) was fifth. Madeline Roberts (fourth), Jena Mannette (seventh) and Grace Dancoes (10th) had top 10 finishes for the Yachtsmen.

“We had a solid finish despite missing Abby Payson due to injury,” Kurry said. We’ll be looking to challenge Cape next week at regionals. Madeline and Jena raced well again and Grace really stepped up to the next level with that race.”

“The girls lost to a strong Cape team,” added Paul. “We were hit with the injury bug. Madeline ran a great race up front. Lizzie Cattell (19th) and Hayley Simmons (18th) kept us in the mix with good performances.”

For the Rangers, Kirstin Sandreuter came in third. The Falcons were paced by Nina Davenport (12th).

In Division II, Yarmouth was tops with 42 points, six better than Merriconeag. NYA (85) placed fourth. The Clippers were paced by runner-up Sarah Becker and third-place finisher Gabrielle Beaulieu.

“The girls had a very good day,” said Yarmouth coach Bob Morse. “Our top five girls (Sarah, Gabby, Emma Pidden, Madison Hynes and Ihilia Lesnikova) ran a great race over a very hard last mile.”

Merriconeag was led by Teagan Wu (fourth). The fastest Panther was Hillary Detert (fifth).

The regional championships will be held Saturday at Twin Brook in Cumberland. Class C girls race at 11:10 a.m. The boys start at 11:45. Class B girls run at 12:20 p.m., while Class B boys start at 12:55.

The state championships are Saturday, Oct. 29, also at Twin Brook.

Volleyball

The volleyball playoffs started Wednesday.

Greely, winner of seven of the past eight state championships, wound up first in Class A with a 14-0 mark, following 3-0 wins last week over Gorham and Falmouth. The Rangers earned a bye into Saturday’s semifinals.

“We set out the goal for the season to play together and play well at it,” said Greely coach Kelvin Hasch. “Now, our goal, obviously, is to get better yet. We can still get better. That’s what we’ll focus on the next two weeks.”

Falmouth wound up 9-5 and fifth in Class A.

“We let some (wins) slip away,” said coach Gary Powers. “The young kids held their own. It’s a learning experience. We’ll move on and see how it goes.”

The Yachtsmen went to No. 4 Biddeford (9-5) in Wednesday’s quarterfinals. It was a rematch of last year’s state final, won by the Tigers. In the regular season, Biddeford took both meetings, 3-0 at Falmouth and 3-2 at home. The winner goes to Greely Saturday.

“We owe (Biddeford),” Powers said. “It’ll be interesting. We’re battling. We’re working on staying positive on the court and it shows.”

In Class B, Yarmouth beat NYA, 3-0, in its finale to wind up 10-4, good for third. The Clippers hosted No. 6 Machias (5-9) in the quarterfinals Wednesday. Yarmouth beat Machias, 3-0, earlier in the season.

“Like many of the teams Downeast, Machias plays a more defensive style of volleyball than we’re accustomed to,” said Yarmouth coach Jim Senecal. “We were able to beat them 3-0 earlier in the year, but you never know what can happen come playoff time.

“Our girls are confident as they approach the playoffs. Our losses this hear have all come from the top four teams in Class A. In all of those matches, we played each of those teams very tough. Our girls have never been in the position of favorite and there are some that feel we may be in that position this year. How our girls deal with that may determine how far we actually go.”

A win would send the Clippers to No. 2 Calais (10-4) Saturday in the semifinals. The teams didn’t meet this year.

NYA finished 2-12 and ninth in Class B. Only the top seven teams advanced to the playoffs.

Boys’ soccer

The soccer regular season was wrapping up at press time and as usual, local teams will play a big postseason role.

Falmouth’s boys’ team ran the gamut of emotions last week, falling, 4-0, at York, before bouncing back Saturday with a 1-0 home win over rival Yarmouth, which had won the past four meetings in the best rivalry in Southern Maine high school sports. The Yachtsmen got an opportunistic goal from junior Grant Burfeind in the 38th minute, then, thanks to a pair of spectacular saves from sophomore goalkeeper Will D’Agostino in the second half, held on for the victory.

“We got this chapter,” said longtime Falmouth coach Dave Halligan. “There are a lot of chapters to be played out. In this game here, you play until the final second. They don’t give up and we don’t give up. It usually comes down to the final minute.”

The Yachtsmen took a 9-3-1 mark into the finale Tuesday at home versus Cape Elizabeth. Falmouth appears locked into the No. 2 spot in the Western B playoff picture.

Yarmouth dropped another 1-0 decision Monday, at home to York, on a breakaway goal early in the second half. The Clippers had their chances, but couldn’t score and wound up 9-4-1 and will be third for the postseason.

“Even in the last two games, I think in three of the four halves, we’ve played pretty well,” said Yarmouth coach Mike Hagerty. “Just like against Falmouth, if you make a mistake against a good team, they make you pay.”

Yarmouth’s regular season record is pretty amazing considering graduation losses, injury and a slow start this fall.

“I’m so proud of them, how they responded,” Hagerty said. “We’ve asked kids to do so many things out of their comfort zones and they didn’t blink. A lot of the kids did a nice job. If you told me after an 0-2 start, we’d be 9-4-1, I would have taken that. York’s the No. 1 team, but after York, it could be any one of five teams clumped behind them. Anyone can take advantage. It’s going to be an interesting playoffs.”

Freeport will qualify for the playoffs for the first time since 2008. The Falcons lost last week to visiting Fryeburg (4-0) and Waynflete (5-1), but bounced back Monday with an 8-1 home win over Wells (senior Jack Dawe and juniors Zach Greene and Parker Matheson all had two goals) to finish 6-7-1 (eighth in Western B). Freeport will likely host Gray-New Gloucester in a preliminary round game Saturday.

In Western A, Greely is back in the playoffs after falling short last year. The Rangers romped at home over NYA (5-1, behind two goals from senior Gavin Collins) and lost at Cape Elizabeth (3-1, despite a goal from sophomore Teddy Hart) last week to wind up 7-6-1. Greely will likely go in eighth and host a prelim Saturday.

In Western C, NYA took a 5-6-2 mark into Tuesday’s home finale against Lake Region. The Panthers had been idle for a week since falling, 5-1, at Greely. NYA was clinging to the ninth and final playoff spot in the region, but projected to hold on and qualify for the 16th year in a row. The Panthers will take part in a prelim Saturday.

The boys’ quarterfinal round is Wednesday of next week. The semifinals are Saturday, Oct. 29. The regional finals are Wednesday, Nov. 2. All of those rounds will be played on the fields of the highest remaining seeds. The state championships are Saturday, Nov. 5. Class A will be held at Falmouth High School. Classes B and C at Hampden Academy.

Girls’ soccer

On the girls’ side, Greely’s hopes for the top seed in Western A were dashed by Saturday’s 1-0 home loss to Cape Elizabeth. The Rangers were coming off a 9-0 win at NYA, as seniors Shannon Fitzpatrick and Audrey Parolin, junior Sammi Toorish and sophomore Allie Morrill all had two goals. Greely was third in the Heals as of Tuesday morning, but could wind up as low as sixth. If the Rangers stay third, they’ll have a bye into Tuesday’s quarterfinal round. If not, they’ll host a preliminary round game Friday.

In Western B, Freeport ended on a three-game win streak, downing host Wells (2-0), visiting NYA (4-0) and host Old Orchard Beach (3-2, in OT) to wind up 7-7. Monday night, at Old Orchard Beach, junior Jocelyn Davee scored her second goal of the game to force overtime and sophomore Ashley Richardson scored the winner. The Falcons (seventh in the standings) will end their five-year playoff drought and could host a prelim Friday.

Yarmouth has come on strong at the end of the year. The Clippers upset host Falmouth, 1-0, Saturday, behind junior Julie Kameisha’s first half goal (from freshman Lane Simsarian).

“We played our best game of the year as the defense and our freshman goalie Shannon Fallon were outstanding,” said Yarmouth coach Rich Smith. “We got a great goal. The game was pretty even, but we had better scoring chances. We had a great team effort and the team really stepped up to the challenge of beating a great team on their Senior Night.”

Monday, the Clippers battled host York to the wire before falling, 1-0, to end up 6-8 and sixth in the region. Yarmouth will host a prelim Friday.

Defending Class B state champion Falmouth entered its finale Tuesday at Cape Elizabeth at 8-4-1 and third. The Yachtsmen had lost two in a row, at York (2-0), and at home to Yarmouth (1-0). Falmouth needed a win to stay third and avoid a prelim.

In Western C, NYA will miss the playoffs for the second year in a row. The Panthers fell at home to Greely (9-0), at Freeport (4-0) and at home to Lake Region (2-1, despite a goal from sophomore Chloe Leishman) to finish the year 2-12.

The girls’ quarterfinal round is Tuesday of next week. The semifinals are Saturday, Oct. 29. The regional finals are Wednesday, Nov. 2. All of those rounds will be played on the fields of the highest remaining seeds. The state championships are Saturday, Nov. 5. Class A will be held at Falmouth High School. Class B at Hampden Academy.

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

Sidebar Elements


Falmouth senior Laney Evers tries to challenge Greely junior Danielle Cimino at the net during the teams’ regular season ending showdown Friday night in Falmouth. The Rangers capped an undefeated year with a 3-0 victory.

Yarmouth sophomore David Murphy and Falmouth senior Cam Bell fight for possession during their showdown Saturday afternoon. The Yachtsmen snapped a four-game losing streak to the Clippers with a 1-0 victory.

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