Category Archives: Oxford Hills

Bangor defeats Oxford Hills 6-1

Bangor scored four times in a ten-minute span in the second half
Lucy Leonard (3) and Emmie Streams (13)

(Paris ME) The Bangor Rams remain undefeated after a, 6-1, win over Oxford Hills this afternoon.

Devon St. Louis and Emmie Streams each had two goals for the Rams.

The victory sets up a battle on Wednesday between Bangor and equally undefeated Camden Hills at Rockport.

The Windjammers have won the last four Class A state titles and have a lengthy winning streak (71?) in place.

Maddy Herrick chases a rebound

“Bangor had a run a few years ago where they had two championships in 4-5 years,” said Bangor coach Andrew Varisco after today’s game.  “Camden has had that run going the last several years.”

In today’s game, Oxford Hills (3-4-1) played much better than the final score would suggest. 

The Vikings rallied to tie the score at 1-1 and came close to tying the score at 2-2 in the second half.

“I was proud of the team in the first half,” said OH coach Brittany Moore post-game.  “They went down a goal but kept the energy up and came right back.”

Anna Connors draws a penalty

This was a 2-1 game twenty minutes into the second half.  The next goal was going to be crucial, and Bangor got it.

The Rams have speedsters on their roster and used it to their advantage to set up the third goal.

Junior Anna Connors (Class A state champ 200m) broke down the left side in on Oxford Hills goalie Maddy Herrick. 

Anna took a shot.  Maddy saved it but there was a rebound to Maddy’s right.  Both players went after the loose ball and Anna went flying.  The Rams were awarded a penalty kick.

Emmie Streams gets set for the PK

Emmie Streams took the PK at 19:15 and gave Bangor a, 3-1, lead.

“We pressure with our speed, and it has led to penalties,” said Coach Varisco.  “We want to cause our opponents to make mistakes.”

Those on the Oxford Hills side weren’t sure that there was reason for a PK at all since Maddy was going after the ball.

Bella Devivo (1) and Tayler King (23)

The referee’s view appeared to be that Maddy had a right to go after the ball.  She didn’t, however, have a right to trip someone else who was also going after the ball.

“Their third goal was a tough one,” said Coach Moore.

Emmie Streams had a successful PK in Bangor’s come-from-behind, 3-2 win over Brunswick last game and she was chosen to take the penalty kick in today’s game.

Oxford Hills celebrates goal

“I saw the goalie’s position,” said Emmie of today’s PK.  “She was positioned more to the left so I thought I would have a better chance to the right.”  And that’s where Emmie’s scoring shot went.

The Rams third goal was quickly followed by three more.  In a decisive ten-minute stretch in the second half, the visitors tallied four times.

Bangor coach Andrew Varisco

“I think if we knew that we were still in it we’d have had more to give in the end,” said Coach Moore.

“Their goalie (Maddy Herrick) had some good saves in the game,” said Coach Varisco afterwards.  “The end result won’t show how well she played.”

Both teams had scoring chances thanks to terrific passing.

Oxford Hills senior Bella Devivo was set up beautifully for a goal by teammate Lizzy Dieterich in the first half.

Bangor junior Anna Connors did the same in the second half with a great pass in the middle to give senior Devon St. Louis a wide-open net to shoot at.

Anna Connors scores the first goal

Both Rams first-half goals (Anna Connors and Devon St. Louis) happened on break-ins from the right side. 

Emmie Streams’ tenth goal of the season was the direct result of an Oxford Hills turnover in their own end.  An attempted clearing pass went to Emmie alone in the middle.  Several quick dribbles (she’s the point guard on the basketball team) put her into position to score.

The Rams sixth goal was by sophomore Lily Chandler.  Lily made a tough-angled shot from near the right endline into the far-left upper corner.

Lily Chandler

“Lily is a high-skilled player,” said Coach Varisco.  “She doesn’t realize yet what her potential is.  Long term she could be an outstanding player for us.”

I saw Oxford Hills opening, 6-0, loss to Brunswick.  The improvement in the Vikings was noticeable.

“The team is very willing to learn,” explained Coach Moore.  “We’ve been able to pick-and-choose what has created the most holes for us in games at practice.  It is nice that they can learn so quickly.”

“We knew that they had some fast players, but I was impressed that we, especially Katie Hallee, could keep up with them,” added Coach Moore.

Devon St. Louis’ first goal

Coach Varisco: “We stress possession/control as a group.  The longer the game went the better we got at it.”

Coach Varisco on the Rams style of play: “We don’t play a lot of over-the-top balls unless the defense is up high which they were doing some with us.  If we can change from one side to the other, a quick switch, and get a diagonal behind, that always works really nicely.”

Coach Varisco on the upcoming Camden Hills game: “Coach Messer has a fantastic program going.  The game will be our halfway point.  We’ll be able to see where we are and what we need to work on.  They’ll test us in many ways. We are used to seeing them twice during the regular season but not this year.  The result of the game will influence seeding and who has home in the playoffs.”

Ella Pelletier (24) and Taylor King (23)

There was no soccer tournament last season.  In the previous four seasons (2016-2019), Camden Hills has knocked the Rams out of the playoffs. 

The Rams don’t lose often as their 132-16-11 record over the previous eleven years would suggest.

The game on Wednesday is a reschedule from an earlier game that was postponed because of a wet field at Camden Hills.  I actually showed up at the field and learned of the postponement there.

Nice crowd and nice soccer weather.

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

Emmie Streams breaks in after intercepting a pass
McKinley Soehren (13) and Anna Connors (5)
Junior Anna Connors – goal and an assist
GK Maddy Herrick makes a save
GK Emma McNeil catches a shot on net
Rachel Mathieu and Saige Winslow
Trinity Bernard (9) chases a loose ball
Goal by Bella Devivo (1)
Emmie Streams (13) and Trinity Bernard (9)

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Eli Soehren leads Oxford Hills (4-0) to 19-6 win over Bonny Eagle

Isaiah Oufiero caught two touchdown passes for Oxford Hills
Eli Soehren had 3 TD passes

(Paris, ME) Eli Soehren was all over the stat sheet in undefeated Oxford Hills, 19-6, win over Bonny Eagle today.

And almost all the stats were positive.

The junior quarterback threw for three touchdowns against the previously undefeated Scots.

“It sure helps to have the best quarterback in the state,” said Vikings senior Isaiah Oufiero afterwards.

Isaiah was on the receiving end of two of Eli’s TD passes.

Bonny Eagle (3-1) won the Class A state title in 2019 and OH coach Mark Soehren has great respect for them.

Zac Oja (23 carries 96 yards) scored the Scots touchdown

“We knew that it would be a battle today,” said Coach Soehren.  “They had a great drive to start the game.”

The Scots put a seventy-yard march together in an opening possession that was heavy on the run game.  They used 8 ½ minutes of the first quarter doing it and ended up with a Zac Oja nine-yard score.

The kick by Kyle Blaney was wide but the Scots led, 6-0, and had shown that they planned on controlling the clock.

Terrell Edwards (3) caught between Isaiah Oufiero (44) and Dillon Worster (58)

The Vikings (4-0) had other plans.

“We went down, 6-0, on their first drive but we made some adjustments and stopped the run,” explained Oxford Hills senior Wyatt Knightly afterwards.

“Our DB’s took care of everyone down the field, and everything started to go our way,” added Wyatt.

Oxford Hills tallied two very similar touchdowns in the second quarter to gain the lead for good.

In each 2nd quarter Vikings touchdown, there were first downs on; scrambles by QB Eli Soehren, passes to sophomore Teigan Pelletier, and sweeps by Matthew Doucette.

Eli Soehren (5) gets great blocking

“Eli is a heckuva quarterback,” said Scots coach Kevin Cooper.  “They have good receivers that are tough to stop.  Pelletier is so tall (6-3).”

Isaiah Oufiero had both scores in the decisive second period.  On each, Isaiah came out of the backfield and curled into an open spot in the end zone and was wide open.

The first OH touchdown was at 7:51 and covered nine yards.  The second was at 2:39 for five yards.

Battle in the air – Trevor Nevells (1) and Trevor Perkins (22) versus Tanner Bean-Bickford (8)

Eli Soehren missed the first extra-point attempt but was accurate on the second.

It was 13-6 at the half.

I haven’t mentioned the heat yet, but it was significant in the second half. 

Bonny Eagle tried their second onsides kick at the start of the second half.  Junior Lincoln Merrill was quick to intercept each attempt for Oxford Hills and give the Vikings good field position.

QB Eli Soehren (10-for-20) connected with senior Matthew Doucette to get into Scots territory in their third-period scoring drive.

The Vikings put up six points on a 28-yard pass to Teigan Pelletier.

Owen Sperrey (13) had an interception for Bonny Eagle

Teigan had the speed to get up the right sidelines and Eli had the arm to get the ball to him behind three defenders.

“Eli is a pretty accurate passer,” explained his father afterwards.  “He finds guys and he trusts them.  Our receivers are athletic and have great hands.  We probably have seven very good receivers now that we can pick and choose from.”

Eli’s extra point attempt hit the scoreboard but didn’t put a point on the scoreboard.  Oxford Hills was in front, 19-6, with 9:40 left in the third quarter.

No more points were scored the rest of the way.  Plenty of turnovers (five) and penalties, however.

Matthew Doucette on the edge

“After that opening score, I thought that the kids on our line played really well,” said OH coach Soehren.

The Scots pass defense also improved after OH’s early passing score in the second half.  They alertly collected two interceptions including one by sophomore Owen Sperrey in the end zone.

The game was originally scheduled for last night, but the downpours intervened.  Today’s 11AM start worked nicely with many attending.

Isaiah Oufiero: “Bonny Eagle is a great team.  They have a great offensive line.  Coach put in a good game plan, and we worked hard to execute it.  The heat was crazy out there.  I was throwing up in my face!”

Zac Oja (4) tries to strip the ball from Peter Morrison (34)

Wyatt Knightly: “Eli really stretched out the field on them.  He did an amazing job today.”

Coach Cooper: “Oxford Hills is a very good team.  We gave it our best and it wasn’t enough.  We’ve got to get better and come here again and win.”

Coach Soehren: “In the grand scheme of things it’s just another game.  However, if we want to be considered as one of the better teams, we have to beat very good teams like Bonny Eagle.  We made a lot of mental mistakes today.  We had a touchdown called back because of a silly mistake.  You’re lucky to beat a team like Bonny Eagle when you do that.”

Oxford Hills crowd

Eli Soehren’s day: three touchdown passes, ten-for-twenty passing (203 yards), sixty-two yards rushing to lead the team, one extra point, and one interception. (The young man can play and Isaiah’s “best quarterback in the state,” is certainly worth considering.)

(All pictures will enlarge considerably if you click on them.)

Zac Oja (4) after scoring Scots touchdown
Oxford Hills coach Mark Soehren
Nicholas Riker (52) flies after Isaiah Oufiero (44) along Scots sideline
Eli Soehren passes to Teigan Pelletier (8) who had 5 catches for 120 yards
Zac Oja (4) with three blockers to his right
Isaiah Oufiero (44) drops Nick Klein (9) for a loss
Teigan Pelletier (8) battles with Trevor Perkins and Trevor Nevells
Bonny Eagles coach Kevin Cooper
Brodi Rice (76) recovered a fumble
Eli Soehrens (5) scrambles
Isaiah Oufiero after the game

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Brunswick shuts out Oxford Hills 5-0

Senior Mia Klimash scored twice on penalty kicks
Alexis Morin (9) scored twice for Brunswick

(Paris ME) Brunswick may have started slowly but when the game versus Oxford Hills was over, they owned a 5-0 shutout on Thursday afternoon in the season opener for both squads.

“I thought we were second to the ball in the first half,” said Brunswick coach Martyn Davison post-game.  “It’s our first game and we’re not as fit as we need to be.  Once we got up to the speed of the game we dominated.”

The Vikings were only down by a goal after a half, but things went south after the break.

“The majority of the possession in the first half was in their defensive end,” explained OH coach Brittany Moore afterwards, “but that penalty in the first half changed the tempo of the game.  Then they immediately got another penalty kick to begin the second half.”

Freshman Alexis Morin played a key role in the Dragons’ victory in just her first game on the team.

Maddy Herrick robs Alexis Morin late in the first half

Alexis’ persistent toward-the-net style forced Oxford Hills into the second penalty shot.

Alexis would go on to score Brunswick’s next two goals.

“I coach youth soccer in Brunswick, so I had seen her (Alexis) play,” recalled Coach Davison. “She does a fantastic job.”

Senior Mia Klimash took and made both of Brunswick’s penalty kicks.

I asked Coach Davison about the PKs, noting that both times Mia had shot to the right.

“I never watch,” he told me, “I’m superstitious.”

Mia’s first penalty kick was awarded after an OH handball in the box, nine minutes into the game.  Mia drove home a low ball to the right corner. That was the only first-half goal for the Dragons.

However, in the closing seconds of the half, Brunswick came very, very close to getting another when Alexis Morin got in behind the Vikings defense. She was one-on-one with OH goalie Maddy Herrick but came away empty.

Loose ball in the Brunswick end in the first half

“I told Maddy before the game that ‘once you make a decision, go with it,’” said Coach Moore.  “She made some good saves.”

Maddy’s remarkable save kept the deficit to one goal but that changed quickly in the second half after a second penalty call.

Brunswick coach Martyn Davison

Alexis’ aggressive style led to a trip in the box by an OH defender just 1 ½ minutes into the second half.

Mia Klimash again was selected for the PK.  This time her kick was to the upper corner of the right side.

Now down, 2-0 the Vikings didn’t go away.  They persisted, had chances, but couldn’t find a finisher.

“We took care of our chances, and they didn’t,” said Coach Davison.

Alexis scored her first goal after getting a long lead pass from Riley McAlister on the left side. Alexis finished her run with a shot that looked (to me) to have deflected off a defender.  That was at 28:15.

Later, more pressure from Alexis from the left on a clean break in.  Her second goal made it 4-0 at 13:09.

Molly Taub scored the 5th Brunswick goal

Senior Molly Taub tallied Brunswick’s final goal at 3:50. Molly approached from the right and pounded a shot into the upper left side.

Brunswick was impressive but they have two games ahead with Camden.  “They have won four straight titles,” said Coach Davison.  “We don’t play them for a while.”

Two weeks ago, Coach Davison thought he had a great team set up for this season.  “I still think we can be great but my top goalie and striker both transferred to private schools.  I also lost my center defender.”

Coach Moore is in her first season coaching at Oxford Hills.  “I coached boys’ soccer at Vinal Tech in Middletown (CT) last season.”

Brunswick goalie Sophia Morin

Coach Moore: “I have been impressed with the girls I’m coaching.  They learn fast and they want to get better.  Those PK fouls are definitely things we can work on.”

Fans yelling at the referees.  It never gets old…..but it should. 

The name of the Oxford Hills goalie is Maddy Herrick.  I heard the name and thought it sounded familiar.  I hope I have this right but I’m quite sure that Maddy also races in the Rookie Division at Oxford Plains Speedway.  She knows how to make quick decisions!

Nice weather, a working scoreboard, and rosters……….what more could I ask for?

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

Maddy Miller (14) and Ashley Richardson (15) in the air on a corner kick
Helen Maher (17) and Quin DiBiase (18)
Dragons celebrate a goal
Hannah Lay
Vikings chase Molly Taub
Vikings Ashley Richardson
Jane Leonard (7), Mia Klimash (8), Celia Melanson (8)
Vikings Lucy Leonard
Bella Devivo (1) and Shannon Flanagan (13)
Mia Klimarsh (8) goal celebrated
Vikings Gabrielle Tibbetts
Battle for control
Vikings Celia Melanson
Maddy Miller (14) and Lizzy Dieterich (22) pregame

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Travis Verrill wins 2nd leg of Bandit Triple Crown Series at OPS

Travis Verrill wins the Bandits Triple Crown feature

A line formed

(Oxford ME) It was like the old schoolyard days when the teacher told the class to get in line and stay there!

Travis Verrill started on the pole in the 25-lap Bandits feature at the Oxford Plains Speedway and nobody passed him.

Believe me, the attendees this sunny Sunday afternoon will tell you that those who wanted to pass Travis were close by for most of the race.

The track conditions forced drivers to stay down low (in line) and wait for something to happen.

Chad Wills and Shelby

“Today was pretty much a one-groove track,” explained 3rd place finisher Chad Wills afterwards.  “There were no second groove whatsoever.  It was too slippery out there.”

This was the second time Travis has won at OPS.

“It’s been an awesome weekend for our team,” he said.  “We won the Demolition Derby at the Fair (Oxford County) last night and then to come over here and win this race is something special.”

Travis got a good start and separated from the rest of the drivers in the early going.  Grady Doherty (finished second last week) was the nearest pursuer.

“In the beginning I broke away a little,” said Travis.  “I thought for a little bit that I had some room, so I tried to make the track a little wider for myself.  Once I saw (Chad) Wills and Alex (Mowatt) get by #1 (Grady Doherty) I knew that it would be only a couple of laps before they would get close.  It was just a fight for the bottom.”

Once Alex and Chad got close there were at least fifteen laps for them to get by Travis………..but they couldn’t.

Alex Mowatt

“Travis did a good job of holding me off,” explained 2nd place finisher Alex Mowatt.  “I didn’t have anything for him on the outside.  It was just too slippery.”

So in line they stayed and very close to each other.

“Everyone was sliding around so it was a much slower race,” explained Chad.  “You really had to use the brakes and pay attention so that you didn’t run into the guy in front of you.  On a normal night you’re able to coast through the corners but today people were slowing down because they had no grip.”

There was plenty of contact.

“Alex came into me a couple of times, but I managed to hold on,” said Travis.

“We were playing tag a little bit,” added Alex.  “I was having fun and they were having fun and we all got trophies.”

I asked Alex about moving out and trying to pass Travis: “I might have had a chance, but Chad was right on my butt and I didn’t want him to get under me.”

There was contact but Travis held on

“I could feel them there,” said Travis.  “There wasn’t time to look back.  I could hear them.  You get caught mirror-driving here and it will cost you.  I over-drove one corner because I made eye contact with Alex in the mirror.”

Alex won the first leg of the Bandit Triple Crown on July 7th.  (That was the first Bandits race I covered.)

The final leg of the Triple Crown is in October.

Travis: “Today is my last race.  My boy plays flag football and I’m a coach.”

Chad: “I will do the October race and maybe a race in Bangor after that.”

With a win and a second, Alex is the points leader going into the final race in October.

Chad: “GA Downing (Minot) sponsors me and I work for them.  They like racing and have helped me out a lot.”

Travis: “I told Alex in tech that he did a great job because he easily could have dumped me a couple of times.  Chad and Alex were in my rear view the whole race.  They certainly were faster than me.”

Nice weather with sun and temperatures in the low 70’s.

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

Car 50 starts on the pole

Frustration for driver of Car 50

Chad Wills, Travis Verrill, Alex Mowatt

Chad Wills tries the second lane

The final stretch of the Bandits feature

Grady Doherty was in second early in the race

Onto the tow truck in another race today

The finish of the top three

Travis and Alex afterwards

Travis out of the car with the checkered flag

Victory lane

Victory lap

The start of the race

Early in the race

 

 

 

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Bilal Hersi (4 goals,2 assists) leads Lewiston by Oxford Hills

Bilal Hersi had four goals and two assists

Senior Bilal Hersi

(South Paris ME) Bilal Hersi.

Special player.

Bilal scored goals and set up teammates as Lewiston dominated Oxford Hills, 8-0, on a sunny/cloudy/rainy Wednesday afternoon.

The Blue Devils (2-0) have won the Class A title two straight seasons and three of the last four.  They’re awfully talented.

I only saw a half of today’s game because by halftime there was drizzle under a threatening sky.  My camera and I have an arrangement; I keep it dry and it keeps working!

So I left at halftime but Lewiston was already comfortably ahead, 5-0, so I had good idea what the final outcome would be.

Bilal Hersi and Mario DeVivo

By then, senior Bilal Hersi already had three goals and had set up teammate Mohamedamin Nur beautifully for a goal.

My homework prior to today’s game led me to believe that the Vikings (0-2) would have their hands full with the visitors from Lewiston.  OH was coming off a 7-8 season with ten seniors.  Only five seniors are on this year’s team.  They were rebuilding.

I also read that Lewiston had taken Oxford Hills out of the Class A North quarterfinals, 5-0, in 2018.

What impressed me about Lewiston?  The first thing was their ability to possess the ball.  They weren’t hesitant to pass laterally and backwards in order to maintain control.  Secondly, they could get away from individual defenders and that created chances down the field.

Bilal Hersi

What impressed me about Bilal Hersi? He’s tall and fast.  He seemed to have the ability to control a possession for longer than other players.  He certainly had the skills to put himself in a position to finish.  I saw him score from long range, in from the right, and in from the left.  I wonder if there are any college plans?

I love watching unselfish players.  Bilal showed that side in the first half.  Hemmed in on the right by a defender near the goal, he managed to thread a pass across the goal mouth to uncovered teammate Mohamedamin Nur to set up the third goal of the game.  Creative play!

Sophomore Romano Bassa also had a goal in the first half.  He came in from the right past defender Casey Southworth for a clean look at goalie Sam Morton and capitalized.

Later I learned that according to a tweet by Lewiston AD Jason Fuller post-game, Bilal’s four goals and two assists tied a school record.

Abdirahman Daud and goalie Sam Morton

It is not wise to predict how a season will go after two games but come Class A tournament time it would be easy to imagine that Lewiston would be in the mix for a third straight title.

Despite the exceptional opposition, the Vikings never let up.  They gave up goals, but they didn’t get after each other.  They will get better as their inexperience turns into experience.

Thanks to Oxford Hills AD Kevin Ryan for making both rosters available to me on short notice.

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

Abdilahi Abdi and Daniel Paine

Andrew Merrill and Suab Nur

Bilal Hersi congratulates Mohamedamin Nur

Bilal Hersi puts on the captain’s band

Cam Stetson and Nick Bancroft

Lewiston coach Mike McGraw

Goalie Sam Morton

Keegan Watson and Suab Nur

Freshman Khalid Hersi

Lewiston goal scorer

Bilal’s long shot sails past Sam Morton

Romano Bassa and Casey Southworth

Goalie Sam Morton

surrounded by Blue Devils

 

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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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