SCARBOROUGH – The Scarborough boys’ lacrosse team wasted no time Wednesday to assert itself in the Western Class A final.

They were physical and prolific, erupting for six first-quarter goals that proved to be the difference in an 8-3 win over Thornton Academy.

The victory earned the defending state champions a chance to repeat. The Red Storm will play Lewiston at 10 a.m. Saturday at Fitzpatrick Stadium.

“We knew it would be our final game on our home field and we wanted to give our fans a game,” said senior captain Nate Hopkins, who scored three goals. “We kept saying after every quarter the score’s 0-0. We never let (the big lead) get us.”

The top-seeded Red Storm (13-1) cruised to a 6-0 lead in the first quarter, getting a pair of goals from Nate Hopkins, and a goal apiece from Peter Moore, Ryan Pallotta, Jonathan Blaisdell and John Wheeler.

Wheeler assisted on four goals.

Thornton Academy (11-4) came alive in the second quarter, getting goals from Kyle Forbes and Chris Dolewa.

But Scarborough’s physical style kept the Golden Trojans off balance on offense and through the midfield.

“Their ability to pressure the ball is incredible,” said Thornton Coach Ryan Hersey. “Nobody else we play can pressure the ball like they can.”

Scarborough goalie Davey Pearson made eight saves but said his defense was a brick wall, rarely letting a clear shot through.

“My defense played so great,” said Pearson. “They just gave me shots that I could see and whenever an (attacker) threatened, they knew what to do.”

A goal by Cory Dion in the third quarter made it 6-3. But the Red Storm shut down Thornton the rest of the way and added two goals in the fourth quarter, from Hopkins and Jonathan Blaisdell.

Scarborough Coach Joe Hezlep was a bit disappointed that his team eased up after the first quarter.

“We really haven’t been a fast-starting team and (the big lead) might have gotten to us,” said Hezlep.

The defense kept Scarborough in control, he said, along with a hunger to get back to the title game.

“We have a lot of athletes who like to get after the ball,” said Hezlep. “Saturday, the biggest thing is that every opportunity counts.”

Thornton, which lost 10-0 to Scarborough during the regular season, put forth a better challenge this time after its slow start, but the deficit was too big to overcome.

“Our plan was exactly the opposite of what happened,” said Hersey. “We wanted to establish our game early, but for whatever reason it didn’t happen. We got down in the first and it was tough to come back.”

Staff Writer Jenn Menendez can be contacted at 791-6426 or at:

jmenendez@pressherald.com

Twitter: JennMenendez