MT. ARARAT SENIOR Will Hirnak, top photo, is given a pat on the back by Scarborough coach Mark Diaz after the Eagles fell to the Red Storm 4-0 in the State Class A boys soccer championship at Hampden Academy on Saturday. In the bottom photo, Mt. Ararat’s Robbie Small, left, goes up for a header with Scarborough’s Kevin Dryzga (2).

MT. ARARAT SENIOR Will Hirnak, top photo, is given a pat on the back by Scarborough coach Mark Diaz after the Eagles fell to the Red Storm 4-0 in the State Class A boys soccer championship at Hampden Academy on Saturday. In the bottom photo, Mt. Ararat’s Robbie Small, left, goes up for a header with Scarborough’s Kevin Dryzga (2).

HAMPDEN

 

 

The Mt. Ararat High School boys soccer team had high hopes coming into Saturday’s State Class A soccer contest against Scarborough at Hampden Academy.

But, coach Rick Renaud was worried, concerned his team was spent after a grueling and emotionally-draining 2-1 double overtime victory over Lewiston on Thursday less than 48 hours before.

The longtime coach’s concerns were right on, as the Red Storm scored 1:28 in and cruised from there for a 4-0 victory.

It was a bitter pill to swallow for the Eagles, who finished the season 15-2-1 and advanced to their first state title game since a penalty kick loss to Scarborough in 2005.

“We played scared, and I knew it was going to be tough, having just one day to prepare,” said Renaud. “To play with Scarborough, we were really going to have to pressure and think. None of that happened. It was just one of those things.

“They are a very good team, and we’re a good team, but they’re better than us,” added Renaud. “You have to work hard, and it wasn’t that we didn’t work hard, but the first 10 minutes we were not ready.”

Scarborough showed its hand early, winning nearly every ball in the air and causing midfield turnovers to set up the offense, including Daniel Ornstein’s first of three firsthalf goals. Ornstein stole an Eagles clear, took on a Mt. Ararat defenseman and beat senior goaltender Gabe Pelletier inside the left post for a 1-0 lead.

“Mt. Ararat is so good in the air, and their work-ethic is second to none, and we knew that we had to win those balls to have success and we did that,” said Scarborough (16-0-2) coach Mark Diaz, whose squad captured its first state title since 2009. “It is the best we have done in the air all year, and the effort they put in was superb. We just pressured the ball and tried to come after them. We countered today when we caused a turnover.”

“They caught us off-guard, and we just weren’t able to match it from the start,” said Pelletier, who had nine saves. “They were able to bring it and we just didn’t.”

Scarborough kept coming, firing the first seven shots and taking a 2-0 lead at 9:21 when Ornstein finished off his own rebound, chipping the ball over Pelletier after the goaltender made a sensational save on Ornstein’s initial shot.

“Coach Diaz made it a point to get us to follow the goalie’s saves and keep after it, something we were able to do today,” said Ornstein, who completed his first career hat trick off a pass from Sam Cekada with a back-breaking goal with 12.5- seconds left until halftime for a 3-0 Red Storm lead at the break. “It was a team effort today. My teammates played the balls to me and I was able to put them in. That is how this team has worked all season.”

“Everything worked out for us, and every coach hopes you get a start like this to a state game,” said Diaz. “There is a big difference between being up two over three, especially against a team like Mt. Ararat that is never going to quit. As good as Mt. Ararat is at throwins and corner kicks, that extra goal was big. It relaxed us.

“It has been a different guy for us every game, and Dan has been getting better all year,” continued Diaz. “I knew he would explode at some time, and today was it.”

“They just outworked us,” said emotional senior defender Dylan Michaud, who combined with Dan Purinton and Alex LaPierre to form a solid defensive core this season for the Eagles.

Second-half pride

After being outshot 16-2 in the first half, the Eagles began the second intent on ending strong.

“I am very proud of this season. We worked hard, beat the rest of the East, and deserved to be here,” said Pelletier. “The second half, it was about pride and (we) didn’t want to get embarrassed. We deserved to be on this field today.”

But, Scarborough, behind a splendid defensive effort by Mike Caryl, Kevin Dryzga, Andrew Morrissey and Chris Cleary, kept the Eagles from generating much as the Red Storm finished with a 24-5 shots advantage and completed the scoring in the game’s final minute when Austin Dowling buried a shot after receiving a pass from Charlie Mader to finish off a 4-0 victory.

“My seniors were great, and didn’t want to sit on this lead,” said Diaz. “Did we take a little bit of a more defensive stance in the second half? Yes! But we knew up front that we could keep the pressure on.”

Despite the loss, Renaud praised his team’s season, which included a 14-game winning streak before Saturday’s setback.

“This was an awesome year,” said Renaud, who loses Pelletier, James McCracken, Purinton, Michaud, Brian Johnson, Ben Volk, Nate Santeramo, Eric Bowie, Jason Tome, Ryan Emmon, LaPierre, Blaine Miller, Will Hirnak and Parit Chancherngpanich to graduation. “These boys played hard, played their hearts out, and it’s unfortunate to end like this, but when they look back they will realize they did a nice job and is something to be proud of.”

Scarborough 4,
Mt. Ararat 0

State Class A Championship
At Hampden Academy

Scarborough — 3 1 — 4
Mt. Ararat — 0 0 — 0

Goals — (S) Daniel Ornstein 3, Austin
Dowling.
Assists — (S) Austin Dowling, Sam Cekada, Charlie Mader.
Shots — Scarborough, 24-5.
Saves — (S) Patrick Stanton 3; (MA)
Gabe Pelletier 9.
Corner kicks — Mt. Ararat, 6-5.
Records — Scarborough 16-0-2, Mt.
Ararat 15-2-1.


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