Time to think postseason

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(Ed. Note: For the complete Portland-South Portland girls’ soccer and Portland-Biddeford and Waynflete-Yarmouth field hockey game stories, see theforecaster.net)

The football season is hitting its stretch run (see story), but the postseason is either near or here in other fall sports.

Golf’s state match will be contested Saturday. Field hockey’s regular season comes to a close next week, with soccer and volleyball scheduled to end the next week. The regional cross country championships are drawing near as well.

Here’s a glimpse at what happened last week and what’s to come:

Boys’ soccer

Deering’s boys’ soccer team was gearing up for its biggest game of the season Tuesday night when it went to two-time defending Class A champion Scarborough (see theforecaster.net for game story). Last week, the Rams held off visiting Westbrook, 1-0, to improve to 8-0-1. Deering (third behind Falmouth and Gorham in the Western Class A Heal Points standings) hosts Thornton Academy Thursday.

While Deering is a lock for the playoffs, Cheverus and Portland still have work to do.

The Bulldogs enjoyed a 3-1 win at Massabesic last Tuesday, behind goals from Matthew Alvarez, Haron Habibzai and a third tally on an “own goal.” Thursday, Portland fell at home to South Portland, 1-0, despite carrying play most of the game. The Bulldogs (4-4-1 and 11th in Western A, where 12 teams qualify) were at powerhouse Gorham Tuesday, go to Cheverus Saturday and welcome Westbrook Tuesday of next week.

The Stags sat 12th at 5-3 at the start of the week after a 2-0 loss at Thornton Academy and a 6-0 win at Massabesic last week. In the victory, Brady Levesque scored three times, Andrei Vile added a pair of goals and Ben Peterson had one. Cheverus was home against South Portland Tuesday, goes to Bonny Eagle Thursday, hosts Portland Saturday and welcomes Noble Tuesday of next week.

In Western C, Waynflete extended its unbeaten streak to four games last Tuesday with a 2-0 home win over Poland, as Harry Baker-Connick scored both goals. After hosting Gray-New Gloucester Monday, the Flyers (5-1-1 and sixth in the Heals) visit Sacopee Valley Wednesday, go to rival North Yarmouth Academy Saturday and welcome Sacopee Tuesday of next week.

Girls’ soccer

On the girls’ side, Portland continued its surge last week when it extended its win streak to five Saturday by holding off visiting South Portland, 1-0, on Kate Johnson’s goal in the 14th minute. The Bulldogs had ample opportunities to score more, but couldn’t do so. Still, they managed to beat the Red Riots for the first time since 2009.

“It feels really good,” Johnson said. “In practice all week, we’ve talked about how we’ve had bad luck with this team for a couple years. It wasn’t pretty, but we came out with it and that’s all that really matters.”

“It was a close call,” Portland coach Arthur Mosen said. “I thought we were organized and we battled hard. I thought we deserved it.”

The Bulldogs (6-3 and ninth in the Western A Heals) had a pivotal home test versus Gorham Tuesday and go to McAuley Friday.

“We have to be ready to compete,” Johnson said. “We’d like to get a home playoff game. Getting up to fifth or sixth place is our goal. Hopefully we have time to do that.”

Deering fell to 6-2 and eighth after a 1-0 loss at Westbrook last week. The Rams have a big home tilt with Scarborough Wednesday (see theforecaster.net for game story), visit powerhouse Thornton Academy Friday, then host dangerous Marshwood Monday.

Cheverus was 2-5-2 and 10th (12 teams make the playoffs) after losses at home to Thornton Academy (6-0) and at Massabesic (3-1). Against the Mustangs, the Stags had a 22-5 edge in shots and got a goal from Olivia Mull, but it wasn’t enough. Cheverus goes to South Portland Wednesday and hosts Bonny Eagle Friday.

McAuley was 2-5-2 and tied with Biddeford for the 12th spot at press time after a 2-1 home loss to Noble and a 1-1 draw at Bonny Eagle. Allison Tardiff scored against the Knights, while Ayla Tartre had the goal versus the Scots. The Lions host Thornton Academy Wednesday and welcome Portland Friday.

Two-time defending Class C champion Waynflete settled for a 0-0 tie at Poland last Tuesday, then improved to 5-1-2 Thursday after a 5-0 home win over Old Orchard Beach. Arianna Giguere had a hat trick in the victory, while Helen Gray-Bauer and Elizabeth Stockford also scored. The Flyers (eighth in Western C) were at Gray-New Gloucester Monday, host Sacopee Valley Wednesday and NYA Saturday, then go to Sacopee Tuesday of next week.

Field hockey

Portland’s field hockey team is also surging, increasing its win streak to six with recent victories at Bonny Eagle (4-0) and at home over McAuley (5-0) and Biddeford (2-1). Against the Scots, Gabby Wagabaza had a hat trick while Jenniluyn Nguyen also scored. Lauren McIntyre scored twice against the Lions, while Wagabaza, Natalie Budri and Taylor Sargent added one apiece. Saturday, in a 9 a.m. start against the Tigers, the Bulldogs trailed 1-0 midway through the second half, but got the equalizer on a corner from Catherine Brewer, then got the winner from Sargent.

“Biddeford’s a tough team,” Sargent said. “It was so nervewracking at the end.”

“We’ve had a strategy to keep everyone who is behind us (in the Heal Points standings) behind us and pretty much every team we’ve beaten, has been behind us,” said Bulldogs coach Beth Arsenault. “(Biddeford) the first team that was ahead of us. We don’t want to let any opportunity pass us by.”

Portland (7-3 and ninth in the Western A Heals) played at Cheverus Monday (see theforecaster.net for game story), hosts Deering Wednesday, travels to Gorham Friday and closes the regular season at Marshwood Tuesday of next week.

Cheverus took a 5-3-2 mark and the number eight ranking into Monday’s game against Portland. Last week, the Stags settled for a 2-2 home tie against Massabesic, then fell at Noble, 2-0. Becca Archer and Emily Michaud had the goals against the Mustangs. Cheverus goes to Sanford Wednesday, hosts undefeated, defending regional champion Scarborough Friday and closes at South Portland Tuesday of next week.

Deering was 10th at 4-4-2 entering Monday’s home tilt versus Noble. Last week, the Rams fell at home to Marshwood, 3-0, then tied host Massabesic, 1-1, behind a goal from McKenzie Cote. Deering visits Portland Wednesday, welcomes Sanford Saturday and closes at Scarborough Tuesday of next week.

McAuley, which has been much more competitive of late, fell to 0-10 and 17th after losses last week at home to Noble (3-0) and at Portland (5-0). Sam Wikowski made a dozen saves against the Knights. The Lions were home against Sanford Monday, play at Scarborough Wednesday, host South Portland Friday and close at Thornton Academy Tuesday of next week.

In Western C, Waynflete dropped tough 1-0 decisions to visiting Yarmouth and host Sacopee Valley last week to fall to 2-7-1 and 11th in the Heals (the top 10 teams qualify for the postseason). Against the Clippers, the Flyers gave up the lone goal at the halftime horn and despite some good chances and 14 saves from goalie Kiera MacWhinnie, fell just short.

“It was a great, competitive game,” Waynflete coach Kelly Hoffman said. “The girls had a lot of fun. I was really happy that the girls came off the field and they had their heads down because they want to be competitive.”

The Flyers hosted defending Western C champion NYA Tuesday and welcome Old Orchard Beach Friday. Waynflete then goes to Wells Tuesday of next week and closes at Poland the following day.

Cross country

City cross country teams joined plenty of others in descending upon Belfast Saturday for the Festival of Champions.

In the boys’ race, 65 teams took part with Cumberland, Rhode Island coming in first and Scarborough and Falmouth placing second and third respectively. Cheverus finished 18th, while Waynflete placed 51st. Parker Montano was the fastest Stag, placing 37th individually in 17 minutes, 1.72 seconds. The Flyers were paced by Wilson Moore (146th, 18:28.77).

On the girls’ side, 58 teams took part with Cape Elizabeth winning the race. Waynflete came in 24th, Cheverus was 30th and McAuley placed 48th. Ellie Chidsey led the Flyers with a 62nd-place showing (20:58.73). The Stags were led by Kaitlyn Dostie (47th, 20:38.39). The Lions were paced by Adele Werner (207th, 22:59.62).

This week, McAuley hosts Noble, Scarborough and South Portland, Cheverus welcomes Gorham, Massabesic and Thornton Academy, Deering plays host to Biddeford, Sanford and Windham, Portland welcomes Bonny Eagle, Marshwood and Westbrook and Waynflete runs at Sacopee Valley.

Golf

On the links, state qualifying matches for the Southwestern Maine Activities Association and Western Maine Conference were contested Monday (too late for press). The team state matches are Saturday at Natanis Golf Course in Vassalboro. The individual championships are Saturday, Oct. 18 in Vassalboro.

Cheverus finished the regular season 5-5 after closing with three straight wins, including an 8-5 home decision over Deering and an 11-2 home win over Portland.

The Bulldogs wound up 4-6 after 11-2 losses at Scarborough and Cheverus.

Deering wound up 1-9 after falling at Cheverus (8-5) and at home to South Portland (7.5-5.5).

Waynflete enjoyed its first winning record in memory, going 4-3 after a 5-2 victory at Old Orchard Beach and a 6.5-0.5 setback at NYA.

Volleyball

Cheverus’ volleyball team is running out of time to secure a return trip to the playoffs. Last week, the Stags fell to 1-9 and 14th in Class A (where only 10 teams qualify) after following up their lone win (3-1 at Cony) with losses at home to Gorham (3-0) and by the same margin at home to Greely (13-25, 15-25, 21-25). Cheverus was at Lake Region Tuesday, plays a must-win match at defending Class B champion Yarmouth Tuesday of next week and wraps up the regular season Oct. 20 at home versus Kennebunk.

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

Sidebar Elements


Portland junior Chessa Hoekstra (10) heads the ball while sophomore Annabella Mendola-Finn enters the play during the Bulldogs’ 1-0 home win over South Portland Saturday, their fifth victory in a row.

Waynflete senior Madison Pellow fires a shot during the Flyers’ 1-0 home loss to Yarmouth last week.

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