SCARBOROUGH – The Scarborough High girls’ soccer team is in the middle of its toughest stretch, so close games could be the norm.

Scarborough, the defending Class A champion, was tested Wednesday night by a talented Deering team. For 74 minutes it was a scoreless game, but the Red Storm kept applying pressure and finally cashed in with two goals in the final six minutes to beat the Rams 2-1 and remain unbeaten.

The game came on the heels of a 1-0 victory Monday against Gorham.

After an uneventful first half, both teams picked up the play in the second and had several good chances.

Sam Sparda of Scarborough then broke the scoreless tie with a hard shot that hit the left post and caromed past Deering goalie Lee Ann Downs with six minutes left. Elise O’Reilly assisted.

Earlier in the half, Downs smothered a shot by Hadlee Yescott at the goal mouth to keep the game scoreless.

Three minutes after Sparda’s score, Ashley Gleason of the Red Storm (9-0-1) made it 2-0 from Morgan Rodway.

As the game wore on, Deering (7-3) got more aggressive on offense and almost got the game’s first goal.

“I was concerned with the scoreless game but I knew we were getting our opportunities,” said Sparda. “I was confident we would put one in.”

Sparda, who has a hard shot, was open in the middle and scored from about 15 yards.

“I wasn’t surprised I was open because I had been open for the entire game,” said Sparda. “They were double-teaming (Yescott) and she kept feeding me and Ashley (Gleason). We had some really good chances. Thankfully a couple went in.”

The Red Storm have games against Windham and Thornton Academy coming up.

“In a way I think it’s good to have our hard games in a row,” said Sparda. “I think, keep playing better and better. If we keep this up, it’s only up from here.”

Deering entered the game ranked eighth in Western Class A Heal points. The Red Storm expected a close game.

“It always is with Deering,” said Scarborough Coach Mike Farley. “They’re well-coached. They play physical and hard and have good players all over the field. The difference was we had two good shots that went in, but after we scored both goals Deering didn’t back down.

“I thought we played much better in the second half. We were aggressive attacking.”

Deering scored with six seconds left, Alexis Elowitch knocking it in from a scramble.

The Rams had a great chance to take a 1-0 lead a little past the midway point of the second half. They were given a free kick, and Elowitch moved up from her defensive position to take it. Her shot was knocked away by goalie Sydney Martin, but in the scramble the Rams had a couple other chances.

Elowitch was moved to defense to limit Scarborough’s chances, which she and the other defenders accomplished. Deering decided to give something up on offense, with the idea of being stronger on defense.

“Alexis knows the game and it’s like having another coach on the field,” said Deering Coach Kevin Olson. “With Scarborough’s offensive pressure, it was the right move. Without her back there Scarborough might have scored a couple of more goals. We wanted to keep the game close and hopefully get one.

“We’re excited with what we accomplished against a very well-respected team, the defending state champs. We just came up a little short.”

Tom Chard can be contacted at 791-6419 or at:

tchard@pressherald.com

Twitter: TomChardPPH