Sunday, December 8, 2013
By STEVE CRAIG Staff Writer
The Maine Principals' Association playoff brackets for field hockey are still a few days away, and several teams have one or two games left to play.
Player of the Week: Karissa Boesch
PLAYER OF THE WEEK
Karissa Boesch, Marshwood junior: The Hawks finished the regular season with six straight wins thanks in large part to Boesch. She scored three goals Tuesday in a 6-1 win against Deering and assisted on Emily Osborne's overtime winner Friday against Massabesic.
Staci Swallow, Cheverus senior: Swallow scored in each game, including two goals against Sanford, as the Stags tuned up for the playoffs with three convincing wins.
Sarah Hopkins, Westbrook senior: Hopkins was pivotal in a pair of one-goal wins. She had three goals and an assist in a 5-4 win against Portland and scored both goals in a 2-1 win at Massabesic.
Lucy Fowler, Lake Region junior: Fowler continued to be the unbeaten Lakers' go-to scorer, getting the winner with 2:15 to play in a 1-0 defeat of York and enjoying a four-goal game in a 10-0 rout of Gray-New Gloucester.
AREA TOP FIVE
3. Lake Region
Still, there are some things we know for sure.
In Western Class A, the top three teams -- unscored-upon Scarborough (14-0), Cheverus (13-1) and Marshwood (12-2) -- have finished the regular season and look to be locked into their spots.
Westbrook is at No. 4 with a 10-2-2 record and will likewise be waiting until the quarterfinals (Oct. 16-17) to get into playoff action.
That means the top teams will have a lengthy layoff.
Last year, Scarborough, Cheverus and Sanford were quarterfinal upset victims after a similarly long wait.
For Marshwood Coach Lisa Truesdale -- whose Hawks' were the eventual regional champs -- this will be a new experience.
"Obviously I would like to have a game or two in that much time, but we'll try to get a scrimmage," Truesdale said. "We actually had a busy schedule at the end, so it's good to have a little rest."
Further down the standings there might still be a position switch or two, but Thornton Academy Coach Lori Smith knows her team could be Scarborough's first playoff opponent -- if the Trojans get past the preliminary round.
Thornton will host a prelim, probably the 8 vs. 9 game. The 8-9 winner will play Scarborough.
Smith's team came as close as anyone to scoring on Scarborough, having a goal disallowed because a whistle was blown for a penalty corner just as the shot was taken.
She said her squad would welcome the chance to challenge the top seed again. Smith also said Scarborough is a stronger all-around team than the Red Storm squad that was upset by Windham last year.
"Watching their (defenders) when they played against us, they're just really calm and confident and really mobile," Smith said.
"Sometimes defense is a place where you put a player who is not quite as fast, but the Scarborough girls, they can run and dribble the ball. The Scarborough players are pretty quick all over the field."
Thornton has been led by the junior duo of Morgan Dube (16 goals) and Lauren Russell (9 assists) -- "Those two are really instrumental to the offense," Smith said -- and senior goalie Abbey Siulinski.
"Beyond maybe the first two teams we're in the mix with all of them," Smith said.
"Marshwood, Massabesic, Sanford, those were all one-goal (losses)."
WESTERN CLASS B is more wide open, and in some ways harder to predict. That seems to be the consensus opinion, though top-ranked Lake Region will look to finish undefeated when it hosts No. 3 Fryeburg (11-2) Tuesday in Naples.
Consider that No. 9 Cape Elizabeth recently beat Fryeburg, then lost to No. 6 Falmouth, which lost to Fryeburg.
Then there are the teams from outside the Western Maine Conference, who face few other Western Class B playoff foes during the regular season.
No. 2 Leavitt (10-2) plays mostly Eastern Maine opponents as a member of the Kennebec Valley Athletic Conference. The Hornets have been solid all year, and one of their losses is to reigning state champion Belfast (11-1-1).
No. 5 Spruce Mountain (10-2-1) and No. 7 Mountain Valley (9-3-1) and No. 10 Oak Hill (6-7) are in the Mountain Valley Conference and play only Class C teams except for their games against each other.
WESTERN CLASS C looks like a two-team race. North Yarmouth, the defending state champion, is likely to go into the playoffs as the No. 1 seed again. Lisbon was the only team that came close to beating NYA in last year's tournament, taking the Panthers to penalty corners in the regional semifinals before losing 1-0, and the Greyhounds again look like the only legitimate challenger.
Lisbon is 12-0-1, with wins against Class B playoff teams Mountain Valley and Spruce Mountain. NYA's only losses are to strong Class B teams, York and Falmouth.
Waynflete has shown impressive improvement and is ranked third with an 8-4-2 record after going 6-9 in 2011. The Flyers were on a 6-0-2 streak before their season-ending 5-0 loss at NYA.
IT WAS AN emotional week for the entire Marshwood community, Truesdale said. Many of her players were good friends with Troy Pappas, 18, of Eliot, who died Friday afternoon, nearly a week after falling down a dormitory stairwell at Bates College.
Pappas, a well-liked honors student and athlete at Marshwood, was a freshman and a member of the football team at Bates.
Staff Writer Steve Craig can be contacted at 791-6413 or at: