Playoffs galore in Forecaster Country

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

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

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

Golf

The Maine Principals’ Association held individual golf championships for boys and girls Saturday at Natanis Golf Course in Vassalboro.

In the Class A boys’ competition (won by Deering’s Joe Walp and Sanford’s Ben Bell with a 75), Scarborough’s Dan Slavin shot an 84 to finish in a tie for 15th. Teammate Hunter Sackville placed 35th with a 95. Zach Pelczar was one stroke back in 36th.

In Class B (won by Lincoln Academy’s Oliver Malcom, 73), Cape Elizabeth’s Reese McFarlane shot a 79 to finish in a tie for sixth. Teammate Xander Schonewolf tied for 29th for with a 93. Connor Logan shot a 97 and tied for 35th.

In the girls’ division, won by Ali Prescott (87), South Portland’s Elizabeth Canarie came in 24th (110). Scarborough’s Kathleen Huffines (111) was 25th.

Field hockey

Scarborough’s powerhouse field hockey team earned the top seed in Western Class A for the third year in a row. The Red Storm blanked visiting Kennebunk, 5-0, in the regular season finale last week to wind up 13-0-1. Senior Shauni Cowan, normally a defender, stole the show with the first two goals of her career. Scarborough hosted No. 8 Windham (6-7-2) in the quarterfinals Wednesday. On Oct. 1, the Red Storm won at the Eagles, 2-0. The teams have no playoff history.

A win would send Scarborough to the semifinals Saturday, where they’d host either No. 4 Massabesic (11-3) or No. 5 Marshwood (11-3). The Red Storm won, 2-1, at the Hawks on Sept. 16. They didn’t face the Mustangs in the regular year.

Looking ahead, the regional finals are Tuesday of next week at Thornton Academy. The state games are at Yarmouth High this fall, on Saturday, Oct. 29.

South Portland missed the playoffs with a 2-12 mark, but closed with a 3-2 home win over Noble last week. Elizabeth Albert, Brianna Bower and Jaclyn Salevsky had the goals. 

Cape Elizabeth just missed the playoffs in Western B after closing with a 1-0 win at Wells to wind up 3-10-1. The Capers finished 11th, but only the top 10 teams qualified.

Volleyball

Scarborough’s volleyball team wound up 12-2 and finished third in the Class A standings behind Greely and Mt. Desert Island. The Red Storm wrapped things up with a 3-1 (14-25, 25-20, 25-12, 25-22) home victory over defending state champion Biddeford. Brittany Bona had 15 kills, 14 digs and five aces, Emily Robbins 33 aces, Mary Cleary 11 kills and three blocks and Meghan Bickmore 11 digs and three aces.

Scarborough hosted No. 6 Ellsworth (8-6) in the quarterfinals Wednesday. The teams didn’t meet this year. If victorious, the Red Storm will travel to No. 2 MDI (13-1) Saturday in the semifinals.

Cape Elizabeth closed with a 3-0 home win over Lake Region to finish 5-9. The Capers wound up eighth in Class A, one spot out of the playoffs.

Cross country

Cape Elizabeth’s cross country teams took part in the Western Maine Conference championship meet last weekend. The meet was scheduled for Falmouth’s Community Park Friday, but poor conditions moved it to Saturday and St. Joseph’s College in Standish.

There, the girls (ranked fifth in the latest coaches’ poll) won Division I with 48 points, 10 better than Falmouth. The Capers were paced by Ellen Best (sixth, 22 minutes, 12.98 seconds). Emma Inhorn (eighth, 22:24.21) and Noelle Webster (ninth, 22:25.41) also placed in the top 10.

The boys came in fifth (Falmouth was first). Peter Doane (sixth, 17:51.92) was the fastest Caper.

Scarborough and South Portland, meanwhile wrapped up their regular seasons last weekend.

The Red Storm hosted Bonny Eagle, Gorham, Westbrook and Windham. The boys (ranked second by the coaches) came in first with their first five runners in the top six spots. Nick Morris won the race in 16:29.73. The girls were third. Kat Gadbois finished fifth (21:45.70).

The Red Riots took part in the city championships at McAuley, which also featured Cheverus, Deering and Portland. The boys (ranked sixth) took first place as Thomas Salamone wound up fourth individually (17:46). The girls came in second behind Cheverus. Nyajock Pan finished third (20:35).

The regional championships are this Saturday at Twin Brook in Cumberland. Scarborough and South Portland’s girls compete in the Class A meet at 10 a.m. The Class A boys run at 10:35 a.m. Cape Elizabeth’s girls vie for Class B honors at 12:20 p.m. The boys start at 12:55 p.m.

The state championship meet is the following Saturday, Oct. 29, also at Twin Brook.

Boys’ soccer

All four local boys soccer teams have legitimate title aspirations as the playoffs begin.

While Scarborough and Cape Elizabeth have the pedigrees, South Portland has been truly superb in the latter half of the season, never more so than Saturday night. Forty-eight hours after their originally scheduled contest was postponed by rain, the Red Riots hosted defending regional champion Portland and ultimately prevailed in a 2-1 double overtime thriller. Junior Caleb Elsemore tied the game in the second half and senior Jack Lano won it.

Tuesday, South Portland finished the regular season with a 1-1 tie at Marshwood (senior Akiba Davis had the goal), extending its unbeaten streak to eight games and improving to 9-2-3. The Red Riots will be the No. 5 seed for the Western Class A playoffs and will host No. 12 Thornton Academy (5-7-2) in the preliminary round Saturday at 1 p.m. South Portland won, 2-0, at the Golden Trojans on Oct. 11.  The teams have no playoff history.

If the Red Riots win Saturday, they’ll go to No. 4 Gorham (11-3) next week for the quarterfinals. South Portland beat the visiting Rams, 2-1, on Oct. 8. The Red Riots were eliminated from last year’s playoffs by Gorham, 2-1, in the quarterfinals.

Scarborough, meanwhile, capped its ninth straight regular season with 10 or more victories with wins over host Biddeford (11-0), visiting Sanford (4-0, behind two goals from senior Andrew Jones) and host Massabesic (6-0, behind two goals from junior Kenny Hodgdon). The Red Storm (11-1-2) finished first in Western A for the eighth year in a row. They’ll host either No. 8 Greely (7-6-1) or No. 9 Marshwood (9-4-2) in the quarterfinals next week. Scarborough doesn’t play the Rangers in the regular season. They beat the host Hawks, 5-0, back on Sept. 6.

Cape Elizabeth bounced back from last week’s surprising loss at Waynflete with a 3-1 home win over Greely. Senior Tim Lavallee had two goals and junior Charlie Laprade, one. Tuesday, the Capers finished at 7-4-3 after a 2-2 tie at Falmouth. Lavallee scored both goals. Cape Elizabeth will be the No. 7 seed for the playoffs and will host No. 10 Kennebunk (7-4-3) in the preliminary round Saturday. The teams don’t play in the regular season. The last playoff meeting between the teams came in the 2005 preliminary round (a 2-0 Capers’ triumph). If Cape Elizabeth advances, it will go to No. 2 Windham (12-2) in the quarterfinals next week. The teams don’t play during the regular season.

In Western D, Greater Portland Christian School lost to Richmond last week, 5-1, then edged A.R. Gould, 1-0 (on Jordan Peters’ goal) to finish the regular season 8-6. The Lions are sixth and go to No. 3 Pine Tree Academy (13-0) in next week’s quarterfinals. GPCS lost, 7-1, at Pine Tree in the opener on Sept. 2.

The quarterfinals will be played Wednesday, semifinals next Saturday and the regional finals Nov. 2. All rounds will be played on the fields of the highest remaining seeds. The Class A and D state championship games are Saturday, Nov. 5, at Falmouth High School.

Girls’ soccer

On the girls’ side, Cape Elizabeth was on track for the top seed in Western A for the first time since 1998 after a 1-0 win at Greely Saturday. Sophomore sensation Melanie Vangel had the goal. Tuesday night, against visiting Falmouth, the Capers had their chances, but couldn’t score and the Yachtsmen broke a scoreless tie with an overtime goal to win, 1-0, dropping Cape Elizabeth to 11-1-2 (its best record since 1999) and second behind Gorham in the Heals.

“If you told me at the beginning of the season we’d have 11 wins, I’d have grabbed it with both hands,” said Capers first-year coach Luke Krawczyk. “The first half, (the Yachtsmen) were better. The second half, we came into the game. A minute before, we could have scored. We didn’t and they did. We look at it like a friendly game before the playoffs. It was a very good game. Not many people expected us to even tie with them the first time. It’s not bad at all.”

Cape Elizabeth will host a quarterfinal Tuesday for the first time since 2002 against either No. 7 Sanford (9-3-2) or No. 10 Deering (6-6-2). The Capers didn’t play either team this year. Last fall, Cape Elizabeth edged the Rams, 1-0, in the preliminary round. The Capers have never faced the Redskins in the postseason.

“We’re happy to be in the playoffs,” Krawczyk said. “We’re even happier to not have to play a prelim. We’ll try to keep winning. There are good teams out there. I know the girls really want to play here and it’s good for the town and it’s good for us, because it’s cheaper on gas.”

Defending Class A champion Scarborough blanked Westbrook (7-0) and Biddeford (4-0) last week. Senior captain Haley Carignan and sophomore Hadlee Yescott both scored twice versus the Blue Blazes. Carignan added two more against the Tigers. Tuesday, the Red Storm capped the regular season with a 3-0 home win over Massabesic (Carignan and seniors Jessica Broadhurst and Meghan Tyson scored) to wind up 11-1-2 and third in the region. Scarborough will host either No. 6 Cheverus (9-2-3) or No. 11 Marshwood (5-7-2) in the quarterfinals Tuesday. The Red Storm blanked the visiting Hawks, 8-0, in the opener back on Sept. 7. Ten days later, they tied the visiting Stags, 1-1.

In last year’s semifinals, Scarborough eliminated Cheverus, 2-1. Two years ago, Marshwood upset the Red Storm in the quarterfinals, 2-1, in overtime.

South Portland made the playoffs for the first time since 2008. The Red Riots dropped a 4-0 home decision to Thornton Academy last Wednesday, but bounced back to blank host Portland, 2-0, Saturday.

Tuesday, South Portland ended the regular season with a 1-1 home tie against Marshwood (sophomore Shae O’Brien scored) to wind up 6-6-2 and ninth in the region. The Red Riots will go to No. 8 Windham (11-3) Saturday at 4 p.m. in the preliminary round. The Eagles won the regular season matchup, 3-2, Sept. 22 at Windham. The only prior playoff meeting between the teams came in the 2000 second round (a 1-0 triple OT victory for the Eagles). If South Portland wins at Windham, it will go to top-ranked Gorham (14-0) in the quarterfinals. The Red Riots lost, 5-1, at the Rams Oct. 5.

In Western D, GPCS lost, 4-2, to Buckfield Monday to drop to 0-13. Elaine Beech had both goals in defeat. The Lions fell short of the playoffs.

Looking ahead, the quarterfinals will be played Tuesday, semifinals next Saturday and the regional finals Nov. 2. All rounds will be played on the fields of the highest remaining seeds. The Class A state championship game is Saturday, Nov. 5, at Falmouth High School.

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

Sidebar Elements


Scarborough senior John Blaisdell goes up for a header during Saturday’s 4-0 home win over Sanford.

Scarborough senior Andrew Jones blows past a Sanford defender during Saturday’s win, the Red Storm’s 10th of the year.

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