YARMOUTH—Waste not, want not.
Yarmouth’s girls’ soccer team had a golden opportunity to win a pivotal contest against a top foe Saturday afternoon, but ultimately had to lament one that got away.
The Clippers got the jump against visiting York when senior defensive standout Lane Simsarian scored her first varsity goal in the eighth minute, but ample chances to add more were denied by York senior goalkeeper Emma Rohrer, trickled wide or sailed high of their intended mark.
Yarmouth held possession for a good percentage of the game, but with 3:20 remaining in regulation, the Wildcats earned a free kick and freshman Payton Humphrey made the most of it, burying a 25-yard rocket to tie the score.
The Clippers would hit the crossbar in overtime, but never could break through and were forced to settle for a 1-1 draw.
Both teams are now 3-1-1, as Yarmouth came oh-so-close to extending its win streak to four.
“We have unlucky games sometimes, but we’ll build from this,” Simsarian said. “It could have been a loss. At least it was a tie. I’m pretty proud of what we did today.”
The Clippers opened with a 2-0 home loss to Greely. Yarmouth got its first victory, 2-1, over visiting Cape Elizabeth, the defending Class B state champion, then came from behind to win at Freeport (4-2) and blanked visiting Poland Thursday, 6-0.
As for York, it won its opener, 2-0, at Lake Region, then impressed with a 3-1 home victory over Cape Elizabeth. The good times didn’t last, however, as the Wildcats lost to visiting Kennebunk, 2-0. Tuesday, York returned to the win column after downing visiting Wells, 2-0.
Yarmouth did well against York last year, beating the host Wildcats, 1-0, and playing them to a scoreless tie at home.
Saturday, York sought its first win over the Clippers since Oct. 17, 2011 (1-0 in York), but Yarmouth managed to extend its unbeaten streak against the Wildcats to five even though it didn’t quite get the result it hoped for and probably deserved.
The Clippers were able to get early possession and their first bid was a harbinger of things to come, as sophomore Katie Clemmer ran down a through ball from freshman Sara D’Appolonia, made a pretty move on a defender, then ripped a shot over Rohrer’s head, but unfortunately, the ball hit the crossbar.
Yarmouth stayed on the attack, however, the ball came to sophomore Cory Langenbach and Langenbach passed to Simsarian, who found the net for a 1-0 lead.
“Moving the ball is really important for our team,” Simsarian said. “We have really good ball control this year.”
Simsarian made history in the process.
“I’m happy I got one varsity goal,” she said. “From the back, usually we just stand at half-field, but we’ve looked on tape at our formation. We know (the backs) can step up because we can be a threat. I just made the run and it happened to be in my favor. I’m not used to being up close and personal with the goal. I just kind of kicked it. I was trying to aim for a corner, not the goalie. It felt good.”
“Lane did a nice job,” said Yarmouth coach Rich Smith. “She stepped out of the back, kept going forward and buried one.”
At that juncture, it appeared as if the Clippers would tickle the twine on multiple occasions, but instead, they were frustrated over the next 82 minutes and 53 seconds.
York did have a couple looks in the first half, but sophomore Madeline Amidon shot wide, then had a shot saved by Yarmouth senior goalkeeper Shannon Fallon.
Late in the half, the Clippers made Rohrer work, as sophomore Abby Condon’s left-footed shot made the goalie dive to make a save and Rohrer had to beat Clemmer to a feed from D’Appolonia.
In the waning moments, the Wildcats earned four corner kicks, but only one came close to being a goal, as junior Lauren Bartlett headed the ball off the line.
Yarmouth came right out in the second half, hungry to extend the lead.
With 38:38 to play, senior Emma Torres set up D’Appolonia for a shot which Rohrer had to sprawl to snare.
A minute later, Rorher broke up a Clemmer rush.
With 29:26 to play and Rohrer out of the goal, D’Appolonia wasn’t able to quite get enough on a shot to finish, as Rohrer sprinted back and fell on the loose ball just in time.
After York senior Amanda Lillie headed a corner kick wide, the Clippers went back on the attack, but Rohrer again denied D’Appolonia with a sprawling save.
With just over 10 minutes remaining, a D’Appolonia free kick was headed on target by Langenbach, but Rohrer made the stop.
Two minutes later, Rohrer denied a shot from junior Eavan O’Neill.
The Wildcats earned a free kick with 7:03 to play, but Fallon made the save.
York would get another free kick after a foul with 3:20 left and this time, the Wildcats made Yarmouth pay.
Humphrey made solid contact and sent a rising shot into the upper portion of the net which Fallon had no chance to save.
Just like that, the game was deadlocked.
“We did foul them and she did bury it,” Smith said. “That’s just the way it goes. We kept letting them hanging them around.”
The visitors almost stole a victory with 27 seconds to play, but Fallon got to a loose ball just before York senior Samantha Robinson and it was on to overtime.
In high school girls’ soccer, teams play two five-minute, “sudden victory” OT sessions and if no one scores, it goes in the books as a draw.
That’s how this one would play out, but not before the Clippers were frustrated one final time.
With 3:36 to go in the first overtime, Clemmer set up Langenbach, who lofted a shot over Rohrer that appeared ticketed for the net to end matters, but the ball sailed just a wee bit too hit and kissed off the crossbar.
Later in the OT, O’Neill had a rush broken up.
Neither team had a good chance in the second overtime and the contest wound up, 1-1.
“We weren’t as composed as we should have been at the end,” Simsarian said. “After my foul and they scored, we knew we had to keep it up.
Yarmouth outshot York, 11-4, but Rohrer’s 10 saves loomed huge.
“York has a nice goalie,” Smith said. “She made some diving saves. We had some breakaways and hit the crossbar twice. You have to put the ball in the net to win. We’ll keep working on finishing.”
Fallon stopped two shots.
The Wildcats finished with five corner kicks to four for the Clippers.
The teams meet again Oct. 8 in York, but neither will be looking ahead, considering their upcoming schedules.
York (which is second to undefeated Greely in the Western Class B Heal Points standings) will be tested again Tuesday when powerhouse Falmouth pays a visit. The Wildcats go to Gray-New Gloucester Thursday.
Yarmouth (third in Western B) will play its next five games on the road, a most daunting challenge.
Tuesday, the Clippers play at Kennebunk. The next day, they travel south again to visit Wells. Games at Cape Elizabeth, Falmouth and York follow (gulp).
Yarmouth embraces the challenge.
“I love our team,” Simsarian said. “We’ve built our chemistry up. We’re putting it all together. I’m looking forward to what we’ll be. We know we have the potential to be really good. We know we can get better.”
“This speaks well of what we’re capable of doing,” Smith said. “We’ll keep working at moving the ball and finding the corner of the net. We’re on the right track, but we still have a lot of good teams to play against.”
Yarmouth sophomore Katie Clemmer has the ball taken off her foot by York senior goalkeeper Emma Rohrer as seniors Samantha Robinson (25) and Paige McElwain defend.
Yarmouth sophomore Ella Antolini shields the ball from York senior Elaine Cavalieri.
Yarmouth sophomore Gretchen Barbera heads the ball away from York junior Sierra Swasey.
Yarmouth sophomore Abby Condon boots the ball.
Yarmouth freshman Sara D’Appolonia turns the corner on York freshman Payton Humphrey. D’Appolonia continued her strong play in the middle of the field.
Yarmouth sophomore Cory Langenbach plays the ball in traffic.
Yarmouth sophomore Eliza Lunt shows her speed as she races past a York defender.
Yarmouth senior Lane Simsarian knocks the ball away from York senior Jessica Foggarty. Simsarian scored her first career goal to put the Clippers on top early in the game.
Yarmouth junior Eavan O’Neill heads the ball away from York freshman Payton Humphrey during Saturday’s showdown. Humphrey’s goal with just over three minutes to play forged a 1-1 draw.
Mike Strout photos.
More photos below.