Yarmouth senior Cory Langenbach (8) is congratulated by junior Meredith Lane after scoring in the first half. The top-ranked Clippers dominated Winslow, 20-2, in the Class B North quarterfinals Wednesday afternoon.
Joe Carpine / 365digitalphotograpy.com photos.
More photos below.
W- 1 1- 2
Y- 15 5- 20
22:52 Y Lane (Antolini)
20:06 Y Elder (Lunt)
19:54 Y Lunt (Antolini)
19:42 Y Antolini (Waeldner)
18:58 Y Lane (unassisted)
18:40 Y Lane (Waeldner)
17:35 Y Elder (Antolini)
15;18 Y Lane (free position)
15:04 Y Langenbach (Wilson)
12:15 Y Thornton (Langenbach)
8:35 Y Groothoff (Elder)
7:20 Y Marston (unassisted)
5:58 Y Lane (Elder)
4:52 Y Thomas (Elder)
3:21 W Joler (unassisted)
2:42 Y Groothoff (Purgavie)
23:27 Y Elder (Lane)
20:34 Y Lunt (Waeldner)
16:57 Y Antolini (Thomas)
9:42 Y Grant (Thomas)
4:59 Y Harpool (unassisted)
2:04 W Clukey (free position)
W-Clukey, Joler 1
Y- Lane 5, Elder 3, Antolini, Groothoff, Lunt 2, Grant, Harpool, Langenbach, Marston, Thomas, Thornton 1
Y- Antolini, Elder 3, Purgavie, Waeldner 2, Lane, Langenbach, Lunt, Marston, Wilson 1
Shots on cage:
W (Selwood) 7
Y (Gunville) 3 (Serrano) 0
YARMOUTH—When you’re the top seed and the heavy favorite, you might as well come out and take care of business as quickly as possible.
Yarmouth’s powerhouse girls’ lacrosse team did just that Wednesday afternoon in its first playoff test, which turned into more of an exhibition of the Clippers’ brilliance.
Hosting No. 8 Winslow in a Class B North quarterfinal, Yarmouth went ahead to stay just over two minutes into the contest when junior Meredith Lane scored.
Then, the floodgates opened.
In a 5-minute, 2-second span, the Clippers produced a whopping eight goals, as junior Greta Elder, senior Eliza Lunt and senior Ella Antolini tickled the twine, Lane scored twice in a row and Elder, Lane and senior Cory Langenbach followed with goals of their own for a 9-0 advantage.
When sophomore Abby Thornton scored with 12:15 to play in the first half, Yarmouth induced the mercy rule running clock and freshman Ehryn Groothoff, junior Emma Marston, Lane and junior Kirsten Thomas followed with tallies for a 14-0 lead.
The Black Raiders got on the board with 3:21 left in the half, but late in the half, Groothoff scored again to make it 15-1 at halftime.
The Clippers got second half goals from Elder, Lunt, Antolini, freshman Caroline Grant and junior Sophie Harpool and while Winslow scored late, Yarmouth was able to put the finishing touches on a most emphatic 20-2 triumph.
Lane led the way with five goals and Elder added three goals and three assists as the Clippers improved to 13-0, ended the Black Raiders’ season at 7-7 and advanced to host No. 5 St. Dom’s (8-5) in the semifinals Saturday at 4 p.m.
“We have an X on our back, but we have that going into the playoffs every year,” Elder said. “We’re used to the pressure. We came out early and put them away.”
Yarmouth’s girls’ team has been close to perfect from the get-go this season in its quest to avenge last year’s loss in the Class B state final.
The Clippers won all 12 games (see sidebar, below, for links to prior game stories), outscoring the opposition, 141-48, and only getting taken to the wire once, in Friday’s thrilling finale at Falmouth.
“The Falmouth game was huge,” Elder said. “That’s the most midfield pressure we’ve faced all season. That brought us up to a different level of what we had to work on. We’ve seen every team and every style of play and now, we’ll accommodate and have something for all of them.”
Yarmouth earned the top seed in the region with ease.
Winslow went 6-6 in the regular season and as the No. 8 seed, ousted No. 9 Erskine Academy, 6-5, in the preliminary round Monday to advance.
The teams didn’t play this year and had no prior playoff history.
Wednesday, the Clippers quickly took care of business and advanced.
After turning the ball over on its first possession, Yarmouth took its first shot with 22:52 remaining in the first half and it resulted in the first goal, as Antolini set up Lane for a 1-0 lead.
The Black Raiders had a chance to pull even at the other end, but a free position shot off the stick of Silver Clukey was saved by Clippers senior goalie Mary Kate Gunville, who was making her 11th playoff start.
After Antolini had a free position shot saved by Winslow goalie Carrie Selwood, Lunt set up Elder in transition with 20:06 on the clock to begin Yarmouth’s surge.
After Lane won the ensuing draw, Antolini set up Lunt for a goal 12 seconds later.
Twelve seconds after that, after Lane won another draw, senior Katie Waeldner passed to Antolini for a goal and a 4-0 lead.
As exciting as the goal was, the fact that Waeldner was able to play Wednesday after suffering what looked like a serious ankle injury in the regular season finale was an even bigger boost.
“(Katie’s) done some rehab on her ankle,” said Clippers coach Dorothy Holt. “We put her in a brace. The biggest thing was she could walk in graduation.”
The onslaught continued with 18:58 to go in the half, as Lane scored unassisted.
Eighteen seconds later, Lane scored again, with Waeldner getting the assist.
With 17:35 remaining in the half, in transition, Antolini threw a high pass that Elder caught and fired past Selwood for the seventh goal.
The eighth came with 15:18 on the clock, as Lane converted a free position.
Fourteen seconds later, senior Molly Wilson set up Langenbach for a 9-0 advantage.
Winslow tried to answer at the other end, but Gunville robbed Sarah Stevens.
Then, with 12:15 to go, Langenbach fed Thornton to make it 10-0 and the clock ran the rest of the way.
After Gunville saved a free position by Katie Doughty, Elder set up Groothoff with 8:35 left.
With 7:20 remaining, Marston had a shot saved, but she got the rebound and finished.
With 5:58 to play in the half, Elder fed Lane and with 4:52 to go, Elder set up Thomas to make it 14-0.
Savannah Joler finally got the Black Raiders on the board with 3:21 left, but with 24.3 seconds on the clock, junior Ellie Purgavie passed to Groothoff for a 15-1 halftime advantage.
Lane won 12 of 14 draws in the first half and Yarmouth had a commanding 22-4 shots advantage.
The Clippers were able to play their complete roster in the second half and continued to pull away.
Just 1 minute, 33 seconds into the second half, after a turnover, Lane set up Elder to make it 16-1.
With 20:34 on the clock, Waeldner fed Lunt for a goal.
Antolini scored her second goal with 16:57 remaining (Thomas got the assist) and the lead was 18-1.
After Gunville was replaced by sophomore backup goalie Isabel Serrano, Thomas set up Grant with 9:42 on the clock and with 4:59 left, Yarmouth’s final tally came from Harpool, her first varsity goal.
Winslow got the game’s final goal, with 2:04 to play, when Clukey converted a free position, but the Clippers ran out the clock and advanced with a 20-2 victory.
“We have such a deep bench,” Elder said. “We wanted everyone to be involved. It was pretty incredible to have our backup goalie involved and some girls scored their first goals.”
“Now we’re 1-0,” Holt said. “We don’t look at the regular season anymore. The girls had to settle their jitters. All the girls got to play and they took care of business. The newer kids were nervous, but this was good. We’re only as good as our seniors and our seniors have taken over. I’m so impressed by them.”
Lane paced the offense with five goals and one assist. She also won 14 of 16 draws.
“Meredith’s incredible,” Elder said. “She’s one of my best friends and is one of the best players out there. She always has her head up and works as hard as anybody. The draw control is huge. That changes the entire dynamic.”
“Meredith is working really hard on controlling her stick and her body,” Holt said. “She has a lot of support around her.”
Elder had three goals and three assists, Antolini had two goals and three assists and Groothoff and Lunt both scored twice. Grant, Harpool, Langenbach, Marston, Thomas and Thornton all had one goal.
Purgavie and Waeldner both had two assists, while Langenbach, Lunt, Marston and Wilson each finished with one.
When all was said and done, 11 different Clippers scored goals and nine different players had assists.
“One of the most incredible things about our team and is that we want everybody to score,” Elder said. “I want to everyone to succeed. Nobody cares who scores the goals.”
“The nice thing about this team is you don’t know where the offense is coming from,” Holt said. “There’s no ‘I in team’ and there certainly isn’t on this team.”
Elder and Langenbach shared team-high honors in ground balls with eight.
Gunville made three saves.
Yarmouth won 20 of 23 draws and had a 28-5 shots advantage (27-5 on cage).
Winslow got goals from Clukey and Joler.
Selwood made seven saves.
Yarmouth and St. Dom’s didn’t play this year. In last year’s semifinals, the Clippers won, 13-6, in Auburn, in the only prior postseason showdown between the teams.
Yarmouth looks to keep on rolling and it appears no one is equipped to slow down the Clippers Express anytime soon.
“From the beginning of this year we talked about our team being a (lacrosse) stick and rising up the stick and we’re getting near the head of the stick,” said Elder. “We’re getting closer.”
“It will just keep getting harder,” Holt said. “We won’t take any team lightly. We still have some work to do. We just want to play our game.”
Yarmouth senior Ella Antolini shoots and scores.
Yarmouth junior Meredith Lane earns one of her draw wins.
Yarmouth senior goalie Mary Kate Gunville prepares to make a save.
Yarmouth senior Greta Elder prepares to score one of her three goals.