WINTHROP – The newness is still there and Jon Dale of Maranacook/Winthrop said it probably will be for some time.

“It can take a year, maybe even two seasons,” he said. “We’re showing people we can play varsity lacrosse, though. We know we’re a new team, but we’re going to come out and play hard.”

The Maranacook/Winthrop boys’ lacrosse team did just that Saturday but lost to Westbrook 8-5 at Maxwell Field.

Westbrook is the only Class A team that Maranacook/Winthrop (3-1) will play this year.

“It was a good test for us,” Maranacook/Winthrop Coach Jared Knowlton said. “To hold them to (eight) goals is pretty good. It’s a testament to our midline defense and to our defenders. But they shut down our shooters.”

Derrick Payne scored five goals and Matt Cavanaugh added two to lead the Blue Blazes (3-2). Kyle Gaudreau also scored for Westbrook, which led just 6-5 in the second half before pulling away late.

Luke Emery and Gage Giguere each scored two goals to lead Maranacook/Winthrop, which had outscored its opposition 22-3 in its previous three games.

“We didn’t have the intensity, but we did a pretty good job,” Emery said. “They were quick and fast, and we sometimes overpursued.”

Added Giguere: “We came out hard but I think we lost our legs toward the end of it. At times we did really good, though. The fouls hurt us.

“We haven’t faced competition like this before. We played well against them but we couldn’t finish.”

The Maranacook/Winthrop team is in its first season of varsity play.

“We have some guys with experience and we have some guys with really good skills,” Knowlton said.

“We have a lot of kids who played for the club team the last few years, so that has helped. Winthrop has helped us out, too. It’s given us six kids.”

Goalkeeper Cam Armstrong had five saves against the Blue Blazes.

Knowlton said the team is finally starting to come together, but acknowledged the newness could take some time to subside.

“I think we finally know where our lines will be,” he said. “We’ve settled into our positions. For the most part, we’ve just now settled in.

“The newness has worn off a bit. We’re starting to gel as a team.”

Added Giguere: “Teams that play us don’t know what to expect out of us. But we’re living up to a good standard. We’ll be pretty good.”