Monthly Archives: September 2018

Bridgton Academy races by Norwich JVs 52-6

George Morrice (20) pursued by Victory Wingfield (26) and Jacob Frith (34)

Speedy Jha’mil King scored three times for Bridgton Academy

(Bridgton ME) You can’t teach speed.

Bridgton Academy had plenty of it and sped by the Norwich JV’s on Sunday afternoon, 52-6.

Long gainers were the order of the day for the 2-1-1 Wolverines delighting a large Homecoming gathering.

BA coach Rick Marcella tried to downplay the win a bit afterwards.  “They’re a JV program.  They don’t get all the reps together we do in practice, so we should have an advantage.  Sometimes a team can rise above that but not today.”

Plenty of celebrations for the Wolverines

Jha’mil King (three touchdowns) and George Morrice (two touchdowns) paced Bridgton Academy.

“They were very good,” said Norwich coach Greg Vreeland afterwards.  “Twenty-five (Jha’mil King) ran the ball real tough.”

The Cadets (0-2) first two possessions started near their own goal line.  “It’s hard to go on 99-yard drives,” said Coach Vreeland.

That bad Norwich field position turned into a safety after a bad snap on a punt attempt from the end zone in the first quarter.

Wigs Crowley had two interceptions

The safety began a steady flow of points for the home team the rest of the game.  The Wolverines tallied two TDs in each of the first three quarters and won with ease.

“We’ve got some pretty good athletes,” explained Coach Marcella.  “They work hard in practice.”

Defensive back Wigs Crowley had two interceptions for Bridgton.  “We were in Cover 3 and I was just in the right place at the right time,” said the DB from Milton (MA).  “Our linebackers played good underneath, so the quarterback had to lob the ball over them.  I was just sitting there waiting.”

It wasn’t a perfect afternoon, however, for the BA defender.  “They scored their touchdown on me.  I bit on a screen pass and then couldn’t chase the receiver down.”

“He a very solid college prospect,” said Coach Marcella of Crowley. “I think he has four interceptions this season.”

There were plenty of big plays.  “One of the top ones was by George Morrice (29 yards) early in the second quarter on a first-down play,” said Coach Marcella.  “He made some nice cuts on that touchdown run.”

Jeff Baldassari, Coach Vreeland, and Caleb Bowen

Preston Buchanan caught a TD pass in the 3rd quarter and Elijah Nichols zigged and zagged his way to the end zone in the final quarter.

The Cadets lone score was in the third quarter when QB Jeff Baldassari connected with Levi Gosselin.  Both players are from Nashua (NH) North.

“We’ll enjoy tonight and then be back to work tomorrow,” said Coach Marcella.  “Our next opponent is Navy Prep.  Most of their players will play for Navy next year.  It will be completely different from today.”

BA plays nine of its ten games on the road.  Why?  It’s hard to get teams to travel to Bridgton.  Most of the varsity teams have games on Saturday which makes travel complicated.

The Bridgton playing field is very nice.

Plenty of get togethers after the game.

Covering games is not always easy.  Norwich added to the “excitement” by having players wearing the same numbers.  Try identifying pictures when that happens!

(All of the pictures above and below will enlarge considerably if you click on them.)

Preston Buchanan caught a touchdown pass

Colin Frary (13) surrounded

Wigs Crowley runs back an interception with Adam Briffett looking to block.

Xzabier Weaver reaches for a pass over Connor Foley 16

Ball on the field

battle in the air

Cam Peach

Elijah Nichols (5) looks for defenders

Four Wolverines after Thomas Meadows

George Morrice (20) runs behind Gavin Viera (4)

Jake O’Donnell 82 and Jha-mil King 25

Jha-mil King stiff-arms Ryan Shea (41)

Levi Gosselin scored a touchdown

Loose ball

Luke Hatch 32 and Patrick Duffy 55

 

 

 

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Filed under Bridgton, Bridgton Academy, Norwich JVs

Yarmouth wins 4th straight downing Lake Region 4-0

Yarmouth brought plenty of pressure to the Lake Region end

Parker Harnett had a goal and an assist for the Clippers

(Naples ME) The scoreboard wasn’t working and senior captain Olivia Feeley was away looking at colleges.

Didn’t matter to Yarmouth as they won their fourth straight defeating Lake Region 4-0 on Thursday afternoon.

“Obviously, Yarmouth is a very good team,” said LR coach David Jaeger afterwards.  “When we made mistakes, they made us pay for them.”

The Clippers (4-2) scored only four goals but they had a ton of glittering chances beyond those goals.  Credit LR goalie Maddie Rock and the cool, but not too cool, weather.

Maddie kept the score down by surviving some point-blankers in the first half and some dangerous corner kicks in the second half.

The cooler weather kept a very busy LR defense from getting too tired over the constant pressure YHS brought.

Laker goalie Maddie Rock above the crowd

The two-time defending Class B champs were patient and opportunistic.  They connected with teammates whether those teammates were ahead or behind.  Their passes ahead often led to scoring chances.

“We controlled the game from start to finish,” said YHS coach Chris Coleman.

The Clippers had two goals in each half.

The Lakers (1-4-1) had very few chances to dent Yarmouth GK Hope Olson.  Neva Leavitt had several runs for the home team.

“We had some decent possessions, but we just couldn’t find the last pass,” said Coach Jaeger.

Abi Hincks (6) chased by Brianna Sargent (21)

Sophomore Parker Harnett converted a break-in to open the YHS scoring.  “It was a great finish” – Coach Coleman.

The Clippers’ second first-half goal was off a corner kick.  No surprise to me.  Why?  The Clippers had all sorts of CK formations and their kickers put the ball where goals could happen.

Twenty-two minutes into the first half Abi Hincks floated a CK far enough out from Lakers’ goalie Maddie Rock that she couldn’t come out to get it.  Teammate Ehryn Groothoff rushed into open space in the middle and one-timed a shot past Maddie Rock.

“It was a set piece,” said Coach Coleman.  “It is something we work on and nice to get rewarded.”

Sophomore Parker Harnett added an assist in the second half to her first-half goal.  Parker found space from the right side and drilled a shot that GK Maddie Rock deflected.  Audrey Goessling was quick to knock in the rebound sixteen minutes into the second half giving YHS a 3-0 edge.

Audrey Goessling (17) scored the 3rd Yarmouth goal assisted by Parker Harnett.

Adriana Whitlock tallied the final Clippers goal eleven minutes later.  The ball came into the middle and Adriana was able to lift the ball over a LR defender as well as GK Maddie Rock.

The Clippers were without WMCA All-Star Olivia Feeley.  “We have a lot more depth than what people think,” explained Coach Coleman.  “Not having her wasn’t ideal but we have other players to rotate in.”

Yarmouth started the 2018 season with losses to York and Cape Elizabeth.  Coach Coleman: “We had the ball the majority of the time against York (1-0 loss) and hit the bar twice.  Against Cape Elizabeth (double OT loss) we missed several one-on-one’s and hit the post.”

The Clippers play both teams again next week.  “We’ll be ready,” promised Coach Coleman.

Coach Chris Coleman and the referee discuss jewelry

One thing Coach Coleman and his team weren’t ready for was the enforcement of the “jewelry” rule.  Three different times, by my count, Yarmouth players were sent to the sidelines.  The game was not rough in any way, so I wondered what was going on at first.  It turned out that the sidelined girls had jewelry on.  In at least one case, Laker folks in the crowd brought the infraction to the referees attention.  “I don’t want to get into that ruling,” said Coach Coleman.  “This is the first time this has happened to us.”

Coach Jaeger regarding goalie Maddie Rock: “She was outstanding, but we’re used to it.  She kept the game closer than it might have been.”

The Lakers tied Fryeburg Academy (2-2) earlier in the season.  This week Yarmouth buried the Raiders, 9-1.  I thought LR would be in serious trouble today vs Yarmouth as a result.  Wrong assumption, as it turned out.

(All of the pictures above and below should enlarge considerably if you click on them.)

Parker Harnett congratulated by Ehryn Groothoff after first goal

Parker Harnett (27) scored the first Yarmouth goal

Neva Leavitt

Mindy Miller (20) and Maddie Rock (17) meet Ehryn Groothoff pre-game

Maddie Rock up for a corner kick

Sophomore Anna Wallace (four goals this season) eyes a loose ball while GK Maddie Rock tries to corral it.

Isabella Wears

Hannah Dwyer

Ehryn Groothoff

Ashlyn Feeley (1) and Ella Caruso (15)

Adriana Whitlock lifts a shot over Bella Russo (10)

Addison Hounchell (41) and Brianna Sargent (21)

Abi Hincks gets in on GK Maddie Rock

Struggle for the ball

Parker Harnett set to fire

 

 

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Filed under Lake Region, Yarmouth

Fryeburg Academy overwhelms Mt. Ararat 49-7

Fryeburg’s Isaak McKenney with blocker Reese Kneissler

Cal Southwick (20) sacks Mt. Ararat quarterback Nolan Blessington in the first quarter

(Fryeburg ME) Anytime a team causes the adjusted timing rule to kick in, they’re having a good day.

And that was the way it was for Fryeburg Academy as they overwhelmed Mt. Ararat, 49-7, on a sunny/warm Saturday afternoon.

“Any time you can have balance like we did today, it puts defenses in a difficult situation,” said Coach Dave Turner afterwards.

The 1-2 Eagles struggled on both sides of the ball. Blame it on the 70-0 trouncing by Kennebunk last week?  “There was no carryover from that loss,” according to Co-Head Coach Matt Haskell.  “We had a good week of practice.”

The Class C South Raiders (2-1) did almost everything right all afternoon. Very noticeable was their hole-opening and pass protecting.

Nate Knapp escapes the final Eagles tackler

That protection gave FA quarterback Oscar Saunders time to beat Mt. Ararat defenders deep twice in the first quarter.  Senior Nate Knapp was on the receiving end of both scores.

In the second quarter that good blocking keyed a persistent ground game that led to rushing scores by Cal Southwick and QB Oscar Saunders.

A wonderful half of offense and shut-down defense gave the home team a 27-0 halftime advantage.

“They had two big plays over the top at the beginning,” recalled Coach Haskell.  “We were in a zone and they had time to get behind our defenders.”

The Class B South Eagles didn’t make it any easier on themselves by contributing two first-half turnovers.  Raiders Dawson Jones (interception) and Jack Campbell (fumble recovery) capitalized for Fryeburg.

Quarterback Oscar Saunders had plenty of time behind blockers Kempton Maillett (55) and Josh Frye (73)

“We were after a certain matchup on the two passing touchdowns and we got them,” remembered Coach Turner.  “We had very good pass protection on both plays.”

The adjusted timing rule was activated late in the third quarter.  It goes into effect when a team gets down by 35 points in the second half.  The clock only stops thereafter on timeouts, injuries, penalties, and scores.

A two-yard plunge (Cal Southwick) and extra point (Eddie Thurston) made it 34-0.  Later in the 3rd period Liam Harriman intercepted a Nolan Blessington pass and then he was rewarded with a two-yard carry to the end zone.

Austin Damon tallied the Eagles touchdown in the final quarter

Now up, 41-0, the timing rule was activated.  Believe me, things started moving a lot faster for the rest of that quarter.

However, in the first minute of the final quarter Mt. Ararat QB Nolan Blessington connected with senior Austin Damon and suddenly the score was 41-7.  That deactivated the timing rule.

Next series senior Liam Chisari zigged and zagged his way past would-be Eagles tacklers to boost FA back to the timing rule range, 49-7, with 9 ½ minutes left.  That turned out to be the final score.

Coach Matt Haskell: “Fryeburg really limited our offense.  They absolutely shut down the outside.  They applied good pressure on defense.  They changed the looks of where they were coming from and even when we had time their coverage was good.”

Liam Chisari dodged several Eagles on his way to a score

I asked Coach Haskell about how the Co-Head Coach thing had come about and how it was working.  “The head coach resigned the second week of preseason.  On an interim basis, the offensive coordinator and the defensive coordinator are running the team together.  I think it’s working out okay.”

The team from Topsham was 5-11 over the past two seasons.

Some sort of serious situation on Route 302 today.  Coming from Bridgton on that route I was detoured into Lovell at Shawnee Peak.  Later, during the end of the football game, two Fryeburg rescue vehicles went by the football field with sirens on.  Life isn’t all fun and games!

Sophomore Eddie Thurston kicked four extra points.  His first try was blocked by Austin Damon.

Nice crowd on hand.  Plenty of sun for everyone!

(All of the pictures above and below will enlarge considerably if you click on them.)

Nate Knapp beats Hunter Lohr for the first FA touchdown

Liam Chisari scores with Kyle Graffam hanging on

Relaxed atmosphere along the FA sidelines

Eddie Thurston (65) kicked four extra points

Dawson Jones returns an interception

Junior Cal Southwick

Cal Southwick uses a block by Dawson Jones

Cal Southwick scored twice

Cal Southwick (20) escapes Austin Damon (34)

Tucker Buzzell (50)led an excellent Raiders defense today.

Reese Kneissler (51) is part of the pressure on QB Nolan Blessington

Oscar Saunders grabs a face mask.

Oscar Saunders (11) find a huge hole

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Will Dieterich hat trick leads Oxford Hills past Skowhegan 7-0

Skowhegan keeper  Zach Carrier faces a free-and-clear Will Dieterich of Oxford Hills

Tomas Mendieta (10) defended by Shawn Hewitt (8)

(South Paris ME) The tough season for Skowhegan continues.

The winless Indians (0-4) were routed by Oxford Hills, 7-0, on a sunny Thursday afternoon.

“It’s frustrating,” said SHS coach Jordan Hale afterwards.  “We went back to old habits that don’t work.  It looked like a U10 game the way we chased the ball.  Like a school of fish.”

Lousy game for the visitors but one to remember for the Vikings (3-2).

Oxford Hills has now won three straight.

Spencer Strong (4) gets the Vikings first goal

“We took care of business,” said Vikings coach Matt Dieterich.  “We came out strong.”

That’s for sure.  Less than two minutes in, Tomas Mendieta cut in from the left and fired a shot at Skowhegan GK Zach Carrier.  Before the shot got to Zach, senior Spencer Strong intercepted it and scored.

The Indians held their deficit to one for the next twenty minutes.  Sophomore Keegan Mantor cleared a loose ball from the goal line to keep SHS close.

The bottom fell out, however, over the last twenty minutes of the first half.  Spencer Strong started it by setting up junior Andrew Binette with a nice pass in front.

Will Dieterich (13) sends a header, off a corner kick, toward the Skowhegan goal

Then Will Dieterich took over.  The OH senior tallied twice in thirty seconds and then completed the 3-goal half with another goal in the last two minutes.  That 5-0 deficit at halftime took most of the mystery out of what the final outcome would be.

“That was my first hat trick,” Will told me afterwards. He now has seven goals on the season.

“I thought we played well,” Will added.  “We controlled the ball and after we got up by a few goals we didn’t get goal hungry.  We still played the right kind of soccer.”

In the second half, Spencer Strong collected his second goal.  Later teammate Colby Ventresca posted the Vikings seventh goal of the afternoon.

Matush Prokop (17) and Will Dieterich (13) chase the ball

The OH passing was impressive.  They kept the ball on the ground and trusted teammates.

The OH finesse made Skowhegan’s lack of same stand out more than it might have.  “Every first touch was up in the air and every pass was ten feet in front.  It was a mess,” explained Coach Hale.  “There were no positives.”

“Our defense was great,” said Will Dieterich.  “Our keeper (Sam Morton) didn’t have much action but he was good as usual.”

Fight for the ball

Will credited teammate Andrew Merrill for a good screen on the Skowhegan goalie on his first goal.  That goal was set up on Will’s header after a corner kick by Daniel Paine.

The Vikings are coming off a 2-10-2 2017 season.  “That was disappointing,” recalled Will.  “This year we have ten seniors and are in a win-now mode.”

Through four games Skowhegan has given up twenty-six goals and scored only one.

I was within hearing range of the players most of the time.  I was impressed with the Indians leaders on the field.  I heard nothing but instruction and encouragement from the players despite the lopsided score.

Spencer Strong (two goals) dribbles between two Indians

Will told me that his dream for next year would be to get into an Ivy League school.  “I expect to play club soccer or intramurals soccer in college.”

I asked Will about being coached by his father.  “It can be frustrating at times because more is expected of me, but it has really been a great thing to have him around as my coach for the past three years.  By him coaching, I know he cares.”

Nice crowd on hand for a sunburn kind of afternoon.

Both teams are in Class A North.

Both schools helped me by emailing their rosters to me.

(All of the pictures above and below will enlarge considerably if you click on them.)

Action in front

Freshman Aiden Clark

Andrew Ireland (16) saves a goal in the first half

Colby Ventresca (11) lines up a goal shot

Mike Rowe

OH goalie Sam Morton sees a shot

Spencer Strong (4) shoots on GK Zach Carrier

Tommy Bancroft

Tommy Bancroft and Abas Al Amiri

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Filed under Oxford Hills, Skowhegan

Freeport wears down Lake Region 9-0 in Class B soccer

Will Winter face-to-face with Laker goalie CJ Ferguson

Jesse Bennell with open space

(Naples ME) “Freeport is a great team,” said Lake Region coach Ryan Harlow after watching his team defeated 9-0 by the Falcons on Saturday morning.

Who could argue?  The visitors put on a passing clinic on all parts of the field.

Many of the Falcons’ goals were at the end of unselfish setups.  Eight different players scored.

“It’s their touches,” added Coach Harlow.  “As soon as they touch the ball they know where they’re going.  They are two players ahead on where the ball is going to go.”

Logan Parsons (9) and Eriksen Shea (3)

Credit the Lakers for hanging in.  Coming off a 2-12 2017 season and a tough 2-1 loss Thursday to Poland, the home team trailed just 2-0 after thirty minutes of the first half.  Unfortunately for the Lakers (1-2), in those final ten minutes Freeport cashed four times.

With a six-goal cushion the Falcons (2-1) could play the second half differently.

“We wanted to give everyone minutes,” explained FHS coach Bob Strong.  “I was able to put players in different positions to see how they’d do.  Some who were usually in the back got to play in the front.”

No matter where the Falcons were positioned their passing was terrific.  “We moved the ball around well,” added Coach Strong.  “We want to limit our touches and play quick.”

Junior Will Winter paced the Falcons with two goals and two assists.

Jake Dumont (penalty kick), Eriksen Shea, Cam Strong, Griffin Johnson, Gabe Wagner, Jesse Bennell, and Liam Grogan had goals.

CJ Ferguson catches a high Freeport shot

The busiest person in Naples from 10AM-11:30AM?  Easily it was Lakers goalie CJ Ferguson.  The LR goalie faced 33 shots and few were slow rollers.

The Falcons did score one PK but, with their passing in the box, several times teammates were set up for PK-type scoring chances.

Defender Caleb Arsenault had an assist for Freeport.  “We played well in the back,” he told me afterwards.  “We got the ball to midfield and the offense connected on passes.”  Caleb is looking to attend Unity next year.  “I would try to walk on to their soccer team.”

Nice cool weather with morning sun.  Good traveling crowd from Freeport.

Caleb Arsenault

Coach Harlow: “Our defense is young.  We’re trying to build it.  Our sophomore class is very good.  We hope to compete with teams like Freeport in the future.  We just had a youth clinic earlier this morning for 150 kids so there is an interest in soccer.”

Coach Strong: “We have some horses this year, but we have to execute.  We play Yarmouth (defending Class B champs) on Tuesday.  That will be a test for us.  No one expects us to win (FHS was 9-7 last year) and that’s the position we like to be in right now.”

The scoreboard on the lower field showed the time but not the score.

Covering program-less games is always a challenge.  To accurately identify pictures, you must have names and numbers.  Today I got some help but as I looked through my pictures I found numbers from both teams that aren’t on the lists I left with.  How helpful it would be if each coach brought several up-to-date rosters with numbers, names, and graduating class to each game.

(All the pictures above and below should enlarge if you click on them.)

Gabe Wagner

Griffin Johnson (13)

Jack (Tom Kolofsky) and The Baker (Matt Mayo)

Ethan Prescott and Jason Harlow

Jake Dumond lines up a shot

Jesse Bennell and Jonas Edwards

Jesse Bennell shoots as Matt Mayo defends

Jesse Bennell

Owen Patrick

Will Winter (2 goals) break through

Action aplenty in front of the LR goal on a corner kick

Bill Antoine fires

Cam Strong (20) finishes

 

 

 

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Filed under Freeport, Lake Region