YARMOUTH – The Falmouth boys’ lacrosse team finished the regular season in the right frame of mind Wednesday.

Three of the Yachtsmen’s four losses have come in overtime after relinquishing sizable second-half leads.

This time Falmouth proved that it can win a close game by pulling out an 11-10 victory against North Yarmouth Academy.

Brad Gilbert scored the winning goal with 34.5 seconds left by bouncing in a shot from 5 yards past goalie D.J. Nicholas.

“It was just a nice team effort,” Falmouth Coach Mike LeBel said. “It was finally nice to come away with a win in one of these close games. Eventually it becomes a self-filling prophecy where you feel you’re snakebit. This win gives us some confidence going into the tournament.”

The Yachtsmen, the two-time defending Class B state champions, held a 7-4 halftime lead but the Panthers, who lost to Falmouth in the last two state finals, rallied in the third quarter to make it 7-7.

“We didn’t quit, which was important,” NYA Coach Peter Gerrity said. “That’s the closest we’ve played them in several years. They’ve been very good and now our guys know we can play with them. We just have to play a whole game.”

Playing an entire game was the key to the Yachtsmen’s second victory of the season against the Panthers.

“After many opportunities during the season that we gave away, we finally stepped up and played an entire game,” LeBel said. “We focused on playing the game rather than external factors. We just concentrated on things that we could control.”

Still, the outcome was in doubt until the last minute.

Falmouth opened a 9-7 lead six minutes into the fourth quarter, only to have NYA make it 10-10 with less than two minutes left.

After Gilbert put the Yachtsmen in front to stay with his only goal of the game, goalie Will Nash dived to stop Jacob Scammon’s shot from 15 yards in the closing seconds.

Nash made nine of his 17 saves in a third quarter that was thoroughly dominated by NYA.

Both teams are 8-4 and have clinched tournament berths.

Paul Betit can be contacted at 791-6424 or at:

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