YARMOUTH – The Falmouth field hockey team has developed a flair for dramatics.

Megan Fortier scored with 24.8 seconds left in regulation to force overtime and then scored the winner with 1:54 left in the second overtime as the Yachtsmen edged North Yarmouth Academy 2-1 in a Western Maine Conference game Friday at North Yarmouth Academy.

The dramatic ending represented the third time this season Falmouth translated a late goal into victory, including a 2-1 win over Fryeburg Academy on Wednesday.

“Coming off a big win we knew we had to keep our presence,” said Fortier. “It definitely helps to re-assert ourselves even more.”

It was Falmouth’s fourth straight win to improve to 8-4-1. The Panthers dropped to 9-4.

It wasn’t easy for the Yachtsmen, who have also played in four overtime games this season posting a 1-2-1 record. As the game approached the end of regulation it appeared as if they were going to suffer a disappointing setback. Although they dominated the first half, they had nothing to show for their efforts as the teams headed to the break scoreless.

Fortier was front and center in Falmouth’s first-half surge as she put together three quality scoring chances of her own.

“(Fortier) really brings a lot to our team,’ said Falmouth Coach Robin Haley. “I’d like to get her into a position where we could get her the ball as opposed to her always feeling that she has to start the offensive end of it but she’s taken on tremendous responsibility and I think she’s done a great job.”

The Panthers, who were held without a shot in the opening half, scored on their first chance of the second half to grab a 1-0 lead. Just 1:48 into the period Katherine Millett worked herself free along the back line and her sharp-angled shot found its way into the net.

From there the Panthers did all they could to hold off the Yachtsmen, finally succumbing on a late corner. Alli Carver started the play with a pass to Fortier, who blasted a shot through traffic and past NYA keeper Elizabeth Coughlin.

Falmouth continued to pressure in overtime. The Yachtsmen created multiple scoring chances in the first eight-minute period without success.

“I’m proud of the effort our girls had on the field today because things didn’t come that easy,” said Haley. “We found a way to stay in the game and put ourselves in a scoring position in the end.

“We got the win but it definitely was a struggle today.”

Fortier’s winner was a thing of beauty. Katie Cooleen started the play from deep in her own zone with a pass ahead to Fortier. The senior forward, who scored 25 goals as a member of the Panthers Western Class C state championship team last year, took care of the rest.

“Katie sent an amazing pass down the side and all I had to do was tap it around one defender and the goalie,” understated Fortier, who made a couple of slick moves to score the first overtime goal of her career.

“It was a great defensive effort in the first place just to get it out of our end and I was just in the right place at the right time, I guess.”


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