SCARBOROUGH – Ben Whitney tried to tell himself it was just another penalty kick. But he knew better.

“I kept thinking that if I put this in, we beat Scarborough,” said Whitney, a senor captain at Kennebunk. And he did.

Whitney drilled his shot inside the left post in the fifth round of penalty kicks Wednesday night to give the eighth-seeded Rams a 1-0 victory over top-seeded Scarborough in a Western Class A boys’ soccer quarterfinal.

Kennebunk (10-4-2) advanced to the semifinals while the two-time defending state champion Red Storm finished 12-3.

Scarborough, which beat Kennebunk 3-0 on Oct. 2, dominated play Wednesday but either missed its shots or saw the Rams’ defense come up with the big stops.

“I thought we carried the play,” Scarborough Coach Mark Diaz said. “We had the ball most of the game. We just couldn’t put it away.

“We had some chances, especially in the second half.”

The second half was played almost entirely in the Rams’ zone — and in the rain. But a Kennebunk defense anchored by Ben Johnson, Josh Prevatt, Jacob Jorgensen and Whitney, kept clearing out chances while goalkeeper Christian Elkington made some superb saves, including three straight blocks during a rapid-fire outburst by the Red Storm with 11 minutes to go in regulation.

“That was so lucky,” Elkington said. The third shot “hit me right in the face. I don’t know what happened. I guess it got cleared out.”

Actually, Scarborough got off a fourth shot in the sequence, but it sailed over the crossbar.

“We got a couple breaks,” Kennebunk Coach Nathan Bean said. “They played a tremendous match. There were some balls they didn’t put away when they had good looks.”

Kennebunk’s best chances came on corner kicks, and the Rams appeared to score in the first overtime. John Grillo sent in the ball and Robby Burns knocked it in, but the goal immediately was called off after it was ruled goalkeeper Peter Moore had his hands on the ball before Burns got to it.

When the game went to penalty kicks, Scarborough kicked first. After four rounds, it was 4-4. Andrew Jones, Matt Graef, Austin Wilcox and Austin Downing scored for the Red Storm; Harrison Hall, Grillo, Johnson and scored Dan Snyder for Kennebunk.

Scarborough’s Kevin Philbrick, who played a dominating game at midfield, missed his kick, hitting the left post. Whitney stepped up for his turn.

“I was trying to ignore everything and make it practicelike,” Whitney said. “But, I mean, this would be the first time Kennebunk beat Scarborough in a long time.”

He hit the back of the net and the Rams began celebrating.

“Don’t be fooled by their eighth seed,” Diaz said. “They’re not the same team they were in the middle of the year. We certainly didn’t take them lightly.”


Staff Writer Kevin Thomas can be contacted at 791-6411 or at:

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