WATERBORO – School officials, coaches and game officials called off the Western Class A field hockey quarterfinal between No. 5 Marshwood and No. 4 Massabesic after deeming the playing conditions unsafe.

The teams will play today at 3:30 p.m.

Both teams had warmed up and been inspected by game officials when it was decided to further inspect the field. It was particularly muddy in front of the goal at one end of the field and despite encouragements from the Massabesic football players to “Let them play,” the game was postponed after about 20 minutes, during which time Marshwood Athletic Director Rich Buzzell arrived to join the conversation.

“It wasn’t that I didn’t want to play but it was a safety issue,” said Marshwood Coach Lisa Truesdale. “I didn’t want to see someone get hurt and maybe not be able to continue.

“In the regular season, maybe we take the chance and play. But right now every game means so much this time of year, I’d rather have better conditions.”

The forecast calls for morning showers followed by improving weather conditions today.

Referee Kari Sawyer, who expressed concerns about the playing conditions while the teams were warming up, said, “We didn’t want to see anyone get hurt. If tomorrow’s supposed to be a better day, we want the best conditions possible to play this game in.”

Buzzell pointed out that field hockey playoff games sometimes come down to penalty corners. He and the others didn’t want any team to be at a disadvantage because of a muddy goal area.

“The kids have worked their hearts out for 2 1/2 months,” he said. “It means too much to let field conditions determine anything.”

And that’s something that Massabesic Coach Michelle Martin-Moore can agree to.

“The first game we played was a tight game,” she said, alluding to Marshwood’s 2-1 victory in a regular-season game against Massabesic on Oct. 12.

“We don’t want this one to be decided by field conditions.”

Staff Writer Mike Lowe can be contacted at 791-6422 or at:

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Twitter: MikeLowePPH