After a hard collision sent Meghana Clere to the ground, the senior forward not only got up but scored the only goal Deering would need Wednesday night in its SMAA girls’ soccer victory against South Portland.

Clere’s direct kick from 30 yards sailed untouched into the net, putting Deering ahead five minutes into the second half. The Rams went on to shut out South Portland 2-0 for their first win of the season.

“I got the wind knocked out of me,” Clere said of the collision that ultimately earned Deering its first goal. “We have a young team so this was a really great win for us.”

Freshman forward Sahar Habibzai cushioned the lead with less than seven minutes remaining, scoring on a header off Clere’s corner kick.

“I was so surprised when I got it,” a giddy Habibzai said. “I was like, ‘What, me?’ I did it. It’s about time.”

South Portland Coach Jeff Selser wasn’t as thrilled with the outcome.

“We clearly need to work on finishing the chances given to us,” Selser said. “It hurts a lot to lose a game like this because we were, in my opinion, the far better team.”

Both teams lost their openers. The Rams (1-1) fell to Scarborough 3-1 and South Portland (0-2) lost to Sanford, 4-3.

“We knew they scored three goals against Sanford so we were nervous about that,” Clere said.

“We have the tendency to start slow but we picked up the speed of play.”

South Portland controlled possession in the first half and early in the second before Clere’s goal switched the momentum.

“That first goal just energized us,” Deering Coach Kevin Olson said. “(Meghana Clere) is a phenomenal player. She has a shot I’ve never seen before and she came through for us.”

Selser said South Portland outshot Deering 15-9, but the Red Riots’ shots were “right to their goalie.”

Deering goalkeeper Tina Dang finished with eight saves.

Zoe Brown of South Portland recorded seven.

“We made it easy on them,” Selser said. “We did everything right other than score.”

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