Sunday, March 9, 2014
By GREG REID Special to the Telegram
YARMOUTH - It's funny how Scarborough's John Wheeler always seems to be in the right place on a lacrosse field.
"If you're in trouble, Wheeler's there," sophomore midfielder Nate Howard said. "He's someone you can always rely on."
Conversely, said Yarmouth Coach David Pearl, "If you give a kid like Wheeler second and third chances, you'll be in trouble."
The troublesome Wheeler had six goals Saturday, including four in the second half, to lead Scarborough to a 10-7 victory at Yarmouth High.
Chris Cyr added two goals and Jurien Garrison and Austin Doody each had one for the three-time defending Class A champion Red Storm (9-1). This was Scarborough's first-ever win over the Clippers (8-2), who entered the game ranked second in Eastern Class B.
Wheeler scored twice in just under a minute in the third quarter, sandwiched around a goal by Yarmouth's Brendan Dioli (three goals), to help Scarborough regain momentum.
Yarmouth had fought back from an early 3-1 deficit to tie the game at 5. Wheeler gave the Red Storm the lead with 5:12 to play. Dioli tied it just 45 seconds later, but Scarborough got the ensuing draw to Howard, who carried the ball into the final third along the left wing.
"That came off the first (face-off) we won in a while," Howard said. "Wheeler was cutting across. He caught the ball left-handed and just put it in. It was a beautiful play."
Scarborough's David Pearson (22 saves) held off intense Yarmouth pressure from close range to preserve the 7-6 lead as the quarter expired.
"I was just thinking about the next shot, making the next save," Pearson said. "The defense was really supporting me today. I was just doing my best to keep the ball out and keep momentum going our way."
"(Pearson made) save after save after save," Pearl said. "In a one-minute span, we had three or four shots and a pipe. He was phenomenal."
Cyr scored his second goal with 9:44 left to make it 8-6. Wheeler struck again with 7:14 remaining, completing a nice passing sequence to beat Yarmouth goalie Sam Landry (10 saves). Wheeler stretched the lead to 10-6 about 45 seconds later, finishing off a strong individual effort.
"I was trying to sneak around a little bit, make some backdoor cuts and dodge to create some openings," Wheeler said. "We maintained our intensity all four quarters. We had to make sure to find good opportunities and capitalize on them. We were able to do that."
Helping matters for Scarborough was the absence of Drew Grout from Yarmouth's back line. Grout separated a shoulder in an 11-6 win over North Yarmouth Academy on Wednesday.
"We executed today, that was the biggest difference," Scarborough Coach Joe Hezlep said. "We've not been able to finish plays because we haven't been able to execute. Today, we were actually completing plays."
Yarmouth's Ian Edgecomb (two goals) batted in the rebound of his own shot as time expired.
"We fought to the end," Pearl said. "That's who we are, and that's what we'll carry forward from this."