FALMOUTH — With about 11 minutes to play in the first half Tuesday night, a train whistle blared through the mist falling at Falmouth. More than a few heads turned toward the rumble of a fast-moving train, somewhere out in the darkness.
It was a foreboding yet familiar sound. Because on the brightly lit field before them, the Cape Elizabeth Express was rolling full tilt.
Talley Perkins scored six goals and Abby McInerney had five to lead Cape Elizabeth to an 18-5 win over Falmouth in a Western Maine Conference girls’ lacrosse game.
Lauren Steidl and Hannah Newhall had two goals and two assists, Maisie Perkins had a goal and an assist, and Kirsten Rudberg and Elizabeth Robinson also scored for the Capers, whose opener with Waynflete was put off by bad weather.
“They started out strong and they were able to execute,” Falmouth Coach Robin Haley said. “We struggled from the get-go. Cape is an excellent team, fast and strong, and they used their skill with the ball and we had a hard time defending it.”
The Capers were tenacious on defense. In their own end, defenders Jane Coffrin, Sarah Flaherty and Melissa Rudberg held their ground in front of Kate Bosworth, who made 10 saves, including some great ones in her varsity debut.
Coffrin was particularly strong for Cape, starting the fast-break attack by scooping up groundballs and sprinting up field before snapping off crisp passes into the midfield and the attacking third.
“We’re a fast-break team,” Coffrin said, “so we try to stop them and get our break going before they can get back.”
“Transition is probably one of the most important things in lacrosse,” McInerney said. “We really wanted to protect the ball. We didn’t want to try 40-yard passes. We wanted to make 10- 15-yard passes and get it downfield as quickly and as safely as possible.”
And with surprising accuracy for an opener.
“Our spacing was amazing,” Cape Elizabeth Coach Jeff Perkins said. “It was great to see. In years past we’d want to carry the ball all the way down the field. Today we were passing really well, finding the open person, being unselfish. It was nice to see.”
But hardly expected. The Capers led 7-0 with 9:56 left in the first half.
Angie Mallis scored twice for the Yachtsmen (1-1), who opened April 11 with a 16-7 win over Yarmouth. Falmouth also got goals from Alexis Bernier, Molly Ryan and Leigh Bernardy.
Falmouth goalies Sarah Hutcheon and Hillary Nash combined for nine saves.
“We have some new kids playing big roles and we’ll work at that,” Haley said. “We’ll gain some confidence. Regardless of the score, our team knows we didn’t play as well as we could have. It’s a good lesson and we’ll find out what we’re made of.”
“It’s one of 12 games for us,” Jeff Perkins said. “I don’t think Falmouth had a great night and we had a good night. The score looks a little odd because of that. When we play them again, I don’t expect the score to be like that. Tonight we were just lucky and we got a lot done.”