GARDINER – Given the strength of its schedule, it was no surprise that fourth-seeded North Yarmouth Academy overwhelmed third-ranked Gardiner in the Eastern Class B boys’ lacrosse final Wednesday night.

Led by midfielder Timmy Millett, the Panthers used an aggressive attack to post a 15-4 victory and earn their first trip to a state final since 2007.

NYA (8-7) will face Falmouth (13-1) at 3 p.m. Saturday at Fitzpatrick Stadium in Portland.

NYA went just 5-7 in the regular season, but four losses came to Western powers Falmouth and Cape Elizabeth.

“Our record doesn’t show how good we are,” Millett said. “I like playing the higher competition. It makes us better.”

In a physical game that featured 21 penalties, the Panthers’ speed and skill came through. T.J. Daigle and Finn Hadlock scored three goals each, but everyone contributed. Millett led several fast breaks and finished with a goal and four assists.

“(Millett) put together a really nice game for us,” NYA Coach Chris Carpentier said. “It’s something we really haven’t seen all season long. What sparked this team was that transition.”

The Tigers (12-3) took a brief lead in the first quarter when Dalton Eldridge and Kaleb Smith scored on strong efforts, but they didn’t have enough to stay with the Panthers.

“We just didn’t show up tonight,” Gardiner Coach K.C. Johnson said. “It was a street fight and we got beat.”

The Panthers led 3-2 at the end of the first quarter and 6-3 at the half, thanks to two second-period goals from Hadlock.

The Tigers staged a dramatic comeback after trailing by five goals to Yarmouth in the semifinals Saturday, but there would be no rally this time.

“It was good to hang on against Yarmouth and come back,” Smith said. “The southern Maine teams play different lacrosse than what we play up here. They have a lot more finesse and a lot more stick skills. It just caught up with us, I guess.”

Forrest Milburn scored two second-half goals as the Panthers pulled away.