Tuesday, December 10, 2013
By Mark Jeanneret, Special to the Press Herald
FALMOUTH - Cooper Lycan scored a pair of goals to help Falmouth to a 4-1 win over York in a Western Maine Conference Class B boys' soccer game Tuesday night.
The offensive outburst in the season finale for both teams arrived in a timely fashion for the Yachtsmen (9-3-2), who snapped out of a late-season scoring slump heading into the playoffs.
"This was big because the last few games we've struggled offensively," said Lycan. "It was just good to get out here and put some balls away and have some confidence heading into the playoffs."
After starting the season 7-0-1 and averaging more than four goals per game, the Yachtsmen went cold. They scored only five times in the next five games (three in a win over Poland) leading to a 1-3-1 record.
"I thought our kids played well tonight," said Falmouth Coach David Halligan, who expected his team to hold the third seed heading into the playoffs.
"We've sort of been snakebit the last couple of games. We had a lot of opportunities but we just couldn't finish. Tonight we finished those chances, which is a good sign especially come tournament time."
Grant Burfeind got things going for the Yachtsmen 16:42 into the game. The senior forward controlled a throw-in and made his way to the top of the penalty area and unleashed a blast that found the top of the net for a 1-0 lead.
Less than four minutes later, the Yachtsmen struck again. Luke Andrews started the play when he slid a pass ahead into prime scoring territory. Lycan gathered in the ball and made a shifty move to avoid defenders and then angled the ball past goalkeeper Adam Legg inside the post.
"I think we played poorly," said York Coach Mike Masi. "We were slow to step to the ball to make plays in the first half and that cost us a couple of goals.
"Falmouth was just far superior technically tonight. They used the space very, very well."
The Wildcats (8-4-2 and in all likelihood the tournament's fourth seed) got to within one with 11:06 left in the half after being awarded a free kick from 35 yards out.
Samuel Rickerich struck the ball high toward the net and Falmouth goalkeeper Will D'Agostino came out to punch the offering away. The ball landed at the feet of Michael Gallagher, who banked a shot in off the post to leave York down 2-1 at the half.
Falmouth opened the second half with a couple of good chances off corners, but York held. The Wildcats headed down field and put together a good chance when Gallagher delivered a long shot that forced D'Agostino to make a diving save.
Three minutes later Falmouth padded its lead when Ian McBrady scored off a corner.
Lycan completed the scoring midway through the second half when he was credited with a goal after a York defender redirected a cross by Alex Gowen into his own goal.