GORHAM – After scoring once all last season, Ashley Gaudette decided a change in approach wouldn’t hurt her game.

Little did she know how much it would help.

Gaudette scored six goals Friday to lead Gorham to an 18-8 victory against Deering in a Southern Maine Activities Association schoolgirl lacrosse opener at Gorham High.

“My goal was to be more aggressive,” Gaudette said. “I’ve been working harder and I think that worked. I’m definitely going to keep being aggressive and see what happens.”

Gaudette played a key role for Gorham after her team got off to a slow start.

Goals by Nyalat Bilieu and Cole Spike gave Deering a 2-0 lead just 3:52 into the game.

Twelve seconds later, Gaudette scored her first of the game. The goal turned out to be the first of five goals — three by Gaudette — in a span of 7½ minutes as Gorham surged ahead.

“Once we started scoring, we sort of set the tone,” said Gaudette. “We worked on transitioning a lot and I think that’s what worked well for us. Knowing when to cut for the ball, and looking for the open and smart pass instead of forcing it also helped.”

Deering interrupted the run with a goal before Gorham scored six of the next seven to increase its lead to 11-4.

Gaudette added two in the spurt to give her five goals in the opening half.

“Ashley played awesome,” said first-year Gorham Coach Mary Vaughan. “She definitely stepped it up today and was in the right place at the right time. She handled the ball well and finished.

“It shows that anybody can step up in any given game. I’m definitely looking to see a lot of different people scoring this year. That’s what I’d love to see.”

Deering closed the half with the final two goals, with Bilieu and Spike each scoring again to cut the deficit to 11-6.

Both teams took to the field missing numerous starters because of spring break.

Gorham played without six regulars, and Deering was forced to rely on five junior varsity players just to put a team on the field.

“I wasn’t displeased at all considering we had, I’d say, less than half the team available,” said Deering Coach Andrew Gordon. “We stuck with it very well. We had a really good start, but I think we kind of ran out of energy because we had very few subs.

“It was a good learning experience. When we were on the bus coming here I thought it could be a lot worse. I think we definitely learned some stuff.”

Meghan Cushing and Haley Perkins added three goals each, and Marissa Roberts collected two for Gorham. Emily Lewis, Rozada Spiers, Morgan Cushing and Katie Tucker also had goals.

Spike and Bilieu each finished with three goals to pace Deering. Scoring one goal each were Juliana Salamone and Maura Densmore.