SCARBOROUGH – Scarborough held off Kennebunk in a matchup of the top girls’ lacrosse teams in Western Class A Thursday night.

The Red Storm, the defending state champions, pulled out a 12-11 victory against the Rams to nail down the top spot in the Heal point standings and home-field advantage for the regional tournament for the second consecutive year.

“Last year we had home field and it was a huge advantage,” said senior midfielder Maggie Smith, who had three goals and three assists. “That was what was pushing us in this game.”

Scarborough (10-1) finishes the regular season Tuesday with a game at Westbrook; the Rams finished at 10-2.

“It was a very big game for both of us,” Kennebunk Coach Annie Barker said. “It would have been nice to be number one and get the bye in the first round.”

Kennebunk rallied late in the game, but the Red Storm seemed to seize control when they scored four goals during an eight-minute stretch of the first half to open a 7-3 lead.

“What won the game for us was the draw and getting control of the ball,” Smith said.

After each goal, either Kelsey Howard or Laura Przybylowicz took the draws for Scarborough.

“If you don’t get the ball off the draw, that is a difference,” Barker said. “We (used) a lot of people trying to get that possession off the draw.

“It’s all about who has the ball, and they had it more times than we did.”

The Storm led 8-5 at halftime, but the Rams pulled to within one goal three times in the second half.

Scarborough goalie Meg Kirsch made five of her nine saves in the second half to keep the Rams from tying the game.

“If she lets one in, she gets a little down, but you know what? She makes the key saves,” Scarborough Coach Marcia Wood said. “I tell her ‘You just have to make enough saves for us to win the game.’

After taking an 11-9 lead on a goal by Meghan Quirk with more than 15 minutes left, the Red Storm became more deliberate when they had the ball.

“I want them to get used to holding on to the ball for a minute or two,” Wood said. “Their longest possession was a minute, 20 (seconds), so I’m trying to get them used to holding on to the ball a little bit more.

“A minute is a long time out there. We just keep trying to not get into shootouts with other teams and keep trying to prevent that.”

Przybylowicz, Howard and Mary Scott each had two goals for Scarborough.

Taylor Crowley scored four goals for Kennebunk and Camille Auger scored three with four assists.

Staff Writer Paul Betit can be contacted at 791-6424 or at:

pbetit@pressherald.com

Twitter: PaulBetitPPH