CUMBERLAND — The third-ranked Greely field hockey team “broke the curse” Tuesday in the game of its season.

The Rangers, after losing in the first round of the Western Class B playoffs for two straight years, edged sixth-seeded Cape Elizabeth 4-3 in a regional quarterfinal.

Greely (11-4) will face the winner of today’s Leavitt-Mountain Valley game in the semifinals.

“We’ll take that,” said Greely Coach Kristina Prescott. “I told my girls every single ball counts today. That was the best game I saw my girls play all season.”

Eliza Porter scored the winner from Ceci Hodgkins with 2:36 to play. The goal broke a 3-3 tie that had stood from the 20-minute mark of the second half. It also broke the luck the team swore it would turn this year.

“We wrote ‘Break the Curse’ on our shirts and were finally able to do it,” said Hodgkins. “I honestly don’t remember the play. It just clicked and it seemed like the ball slowly trickled in. It’s unbelievable.”

Porter was down low and struck the ball through the Cape goalie’s pads.

“I was playing the pads and anticipating the pass,” said Porter. “That was a huge relief. In a way I was expecting overtime. But I didn’t want to go there. We just pushed through.”

The tie included a stretch of four straight penalty corners by Cape Elizabeth (7-7-1) that Greely defended.

Each time the inserter chipped the ball up, it was stopped at the circle but a clear shot was never made.

“It’s a heartbreaker,” said Cape Coach Darci Holland. “That was a great game of evenly skilled teams.”

Holland’s team went up 1-0 just 27 seconds into the game — a goal by Ally Boyington that could have been a backbreaker for Greely.

“I think that helped us,” said Prescott. “It pushed our girls to do everything they could.”

Jackie Andrew tied it off a penalty corner at 15:58, before Lauren Steidel struck in front to make it 2-1 with 9:52 to play in the first half.

Greely scored again on a rebound – a score by Rachel Hanson at 5:42 to tie it 2-2 for halftime.

The Rangers then took their first lead at 25:35 of the second half with a goal off a rush from Sarah Howard to make it 3-2.

Steidel struck again at 20:53, and neither team scored again until Greely put in the winner.

 

Staff Writer Jenn Menendez can be contacted at 791-6426 or at: [email protected]