Sunday, December 8, 2013
By GREG REID Special to the Press Herald
PORTLAND - Ten games into the season, unbeaten Thornton Academy added something new to its repertoire -- a comeback victory.
Danielle Kane, right, of Cheverus tries to control the ball under pressure from Thornton Academy’s Kaitlyn Couture in an SMAA girls’ soccer match played at Deering High. The visiting Trojans overcame two deficits and earned a 4-3 victory.
Photos by Gordon Chibroski/Staff Photographer
Abby Maker of Cheverus unleashes a shot that results in the game’s first goal Thursday as Thornton Academy’s Megan Hurrell looks on. Thornton fell behind by two goals for the first time this year but rallied for a 4-3 victory.
Senior forward Amanda Arnold scored three goals as the Trojans overcame a 2-0 deficit, rallying twice for a 4-3 victory over Cheverus in an SMAA girls' soccer game Wednesday night.
"What I liked is we faced a little adversity and we knew what we had to do," said Thornton Academy Coach Chris Kohl, whose team allowed more than one goal for the first time this season. "Good teams respond to situations like this. We weren't ourselves in the first half, but in the second half we were much more aggressive.
"We could have packed it in, down 2-0. But we decided to really fight. This is a great win for us."
Rain earlier in the day pushed the game back 3½ hours and moved it from the grass of Cheverus' Boulos Stadium to the turf of Deering High's Memorial Field.
And the Stags' furious first half very nearly pushed Thornton to its first loss of the season. Eden Monson and Darby Rawcliffe controlled the midfield, and the Stags' back line of Abby Goodrich, Victoria Nappi, Nicole Pineau and Jamie Dulac held the Trojans in check.
Abby Maker and Maddy Richardson scored on long drives to give Cheverus a 2-0 lead just 16 minutes into the game. Arnold made it 2-1 when she capitalized on a defensive lapse to steal the ball and tap it past freshman keeper Hannah Tyson (three saves), who was in the lineup because senior Mikayla Mayberry is recovering from a bout of mononucleosis.
Arnold tied it 7:21 into the second half, gathering a long pass from defender Katelyn Pierson, beating her mark and chipping the ball in from 20 yards.
"I knew they were going to come out aggressively and we had to keep composure," Arnold said. "I had great setups, and in the second half we were playing well together."
Rawcliffe regained the lead for the Stags (8-3) about two minutes later when she sent Maker's back pass toward Trojans goalie Emily Richard (eight saves). The ball skipped off the turf, took a strange bounce and eluded Richard's grab.
"This was a huge game for us," Rawcliffe said. "We needed to come out focused, and we did that in the first half. In the second half, they came out ready to play. We weren't on our toes and that's what cost us the game."
Tori Daigle tied it at 3 when she drove in the rebound of her own shot from about eight yards. Haley DaGraca nearly put the Trojans ahead on a direct kick from 35 yards, but Tyson smothered it on the goal line.
Arnold scored the winner about four minutes later, lofting the ball over the keeper from about nine yards for her 18th of the season.
"(Arnold's) a great player," Rawcliffe said. "She's very fast and has great footwork. We were lunging at her instead of trying to contain her, and she beat us when we were lunging."
"I think we played really well. We had two letdowns that led to two goals. All it takes is a couple of little letdowns, and the good teams punish you, and they're a great team," said Cheverus Coach Dan LaVallee.
"If we can fix these mistakes, then we can play with a Thornton Academy, or a Scarborough. We can play with anybody."