Wednesday, December 18, 2013
By Steve Craig firstname.lastname@example.org
WATERBORO - Massabesic High's strong group of senior field hockey players met a midseason test Thursday, defeating Cheverus, 1-0.
"We'd never beaten them. This group of kids had never beaten Cheverus," Massabesic Coach Michelle Martin-Moore said. "So there's always that little seed of doubt that you need to slam the door on. That little voice of doubt needs to clam up and I think (the win) did that."
Massabesic improved to 8-1 thanks to a first-half goal by Jackie Guillemette and a dominant second-half effort.
Cheverus is now 6-2. The Stags appeared to tie the game early in the second half on a drive by Elyse Caiazzo. The ball skipped off Massabesic goalie Abby Greenleaf's left foot, then went up and over the keeper. The goal was disallowed due to a high stick touch by Cheverus.
"(The referee) said it was a high stick but I didn't see any sticks go in the air," Cheverus Coach Amy McMullin said. "If I'm wrong, then I'm wrong. I just thought that if it wasn't a goal she would have called it a lot sooner."
After the game Greenleaf said she did see a stick rise above her head and deflect the ball.
Massabesic midfielder Lexi Foglio said her team was putting the play behind them -- goal or not -- as soon as the ball got past Greenleaf.
"Oh yeah, we were ready to go. We were like, oh, it went in, we'll get another one and match it right back," Foglio said.
While Massabesic didn't score in the second half, it had numerous chances and a daunting 10-3 edge in penalty corners.
Within minutes after the non-goal, Massabesic produced three penalty corners and swarmed in front of Cheverus goalie Libby DesRuisseaux (14 saves).
That trend continued throughout the second half, though Greenleaf (12 saves) was called upon to make one key stop when Meredith Willard got loose on a breakaway bid.
Foglio was one of the key Mustangs, along with Alex Staples, Maggie Redman and Bailey Ohman, who continually thwarted Cheverus clearing attempts.
"We knew it was going to be a tough game coming in so we wanted to play calm," Foglio said. "We were more concerned about playing together and taking this as a challenge rather than taking this away as a win, and I think that's what made us come out and get the outcome we wanted."
In the first half the two teams traded rushes, shots and saves almost evenly.
Guillemette put her team on top when she stayed with a play after a shot by Logan Provencher appeared to get past DesRuisseaux. With the Cheverus goalie prone and two other defenders also working to clear the ball -- and no goal yet signaled -- Guillemette was able to push the ball over the line with 19:26 left in the first half.
Guillemette agreed Thursday's win had extra significance because Massabesic has been touted as a serious Western Class A contender but as a group had not won a playoff game or beaten the established top programs prior to this season.
"This was a way to prove ourselves, that we're really in it to win it and we're going to go as far as we can," Guillemette said.
Steve Craig can be reached at 791-6413 or at: