Cape Elizabeth’s C.J. Logue fights for possession during Saturday’s 3-0 loss at Freeport in a Class B South preliminary round playoff game.
South Portland’s Lydia Henderson reaches for the ball during the Red Riots’ 3-0 loss to Cheverus in Saturday’s Class A South preliminary round playoff game.
(Ed. Note: For the complete South Portland-Cheverus game story, with additional photos, see theforecaster.net)
Three local field hockey teams qualified for the playoffs, but two quickly bowed out last weekend.
Cape Elizabeth, the No. 9 seed in Class B South, lost, 3-0, at No. 8 Freeport in a Class B South preliminary round contest. The Falcons, who won both regular season meetings, 4-0 in Cape Elizabeth and 2-1 at home, broke the ice midway through the first half, added a second goal before halftime and put it away with a goal in the second half.
“I think the main difference (today) was they scored a beautiful goal in the first 15 minutes and had the momentum and confidence that we never got,” said Capers coach Maura Bisogni. “Getting on the board early in this league is really important. We’re also a turf team, so coming to grass is always hard, but we were here last week.”
The Capers, who went 0-14 in 2015, enjoyed a bounce-back campaign with a playoff berth and finished 5-10.
“We’re disappointed we couldn’t keep going this year, but we were excited to be in the playoffs,” Bisogni said. “We feel like we had a successful season, and we’re looking forward to next year.”
In Class A South, South Portland also went 5-9 in the regular season and earned the No. 10 seed.
Saturday, the Red Riots went to No. 7 Cheverus and played very well in the first half, but couldn’t finish. The Stags took a 2-0 lead to halftime and added another goal to prevail, 3-0, ending South Portland’s season at 3-10.
The Red Riots took eight penalty corners to Cheverus’ seven and got eight saves from freshman goalie Maddie Drolet, but as has been the case much of the season, they couldn’t get a key goal at a key time.
“This game could have gone either direction,” said South Portland coach Leslie Dyer. “We had little mistakes here and there, but overall, we were right there with them.”
South Portland was a vastly different and better team in mid-October than it was at the beginning of September.
“We are certainly making strides,” Dyer said. “The girls learned how to battle. They got faster and smarter in a game sense. I have six wonderful seniors who brought this team far. The seniors made it a lot of fun. Team dynamics is so big. Coming from where they were freshman year, they’ve changed the culture of the program.”
Next year, South Portland hopes to post a winning record, get back to the postseason and enjoy a longer stay.
“The program’s growing,” Dyer said. “We have 44 girls in the program and more coming from middle school. I’m proud of what we accomplished this year, but we still have business we want to accomplish next year.”
Perennial powerhouse Scarborough won its final 12 games to go 12-2 and earn the No. 3 seed in Class A South. The Red Storm got a break Saturday, when No. 11 Biddeford upset No. 6 Thornton Academy, the defending regional champion, in the preliminary round, so Scarborough hosted the 6-9 Tigers in the quarterfinals Wednesday.
On Sept. 29, the Red Storm blanked visiting Biddeford, 3-0. Scarborough entered the game 3-0 all-time against the Tigers in the playoffs, including a 3-1 quarterfinal round win two years ago en route to the Class A title.
If the Red Storm advanced, they’d go to No. 2 Marshwood (13-2) for the semifinals Friday or Saturday. Scarborough lost at home to the Hawks, 4-1, in the season opener Sept. 1. The Red Storm beat Marshwood in both previous playoff meetings, including a 3-1 regional final victory two years ago.
The Class A South Final will be held Tuesday at Massabesic High School in Waterboro.
The Class A state final is Saturday, Oct. 29 at McMann Field in Bath.
Current staff writer Adam Birt contributed to this story.