WATERBORO — Before every game, Coach Michele Martin-Moore cuts a piece of paper into a shape and writes a note of encouragement or instruction on it for each of her Massabesic High field hockey players. On Tuesday against Marshwood High, the shape was a lightning bolt.

“For that extra flash of energy” she said. Her players got the message.

The unbeaten Mustangs came out very fast, scoring twice in the game’s first 12:41 on goals by Logan Champlin and Emma Rutledge, to hand Marshwood its first loss, 2-1. Massabesic controlled the first half thoroughly until the Hawks settled down in the final 30 minutes.

“We played with a lot of heart,” said Martin-Moore. “As I told the girls, this win doesn’t punch our ticket to anywhere. It just allows you to be undefeated going in to Biddeford (on Thursday). That’s it.”

The victory lifted the Mustangs to 5-0 and Marshwood, which trailed for the first time this season, dropped to 4-1.

Rutledge said it was important that the Mustangs came out fast against Marshwood, which has some exceptional skill players led by midfielders Hannah Costin and Elaine Bachelder.

“I think it’s good that we scored first,” she said. “We just wanted to go out with some intensity.”

The Mustangs went at the Hawks fast, scoring when Champlin pushed the ball into the net at the right post during a scrum 5:34 in.

Marshwood senior Elaine Bachelder gets the ball away from Massabesic junior Kaylee St. Laurent.    Brianna Soukup/Staff Photographer

Marshwood senior Elaine Bachelder gets the ball away from Massabesic junior Kaylee St. Laurent. Brianna Soukup/Staff Photographer

Massabesic kept the pressure on, beating the Marshwood players to every ball and forcing Hawks Coach Lisa Truesdale to call a timeout with 17:29 remaining. But 10 seconds later, Rutledge scored on a hard drive from the right toward the left post to make it 2-0.

“I was thinking just to get a hard shot off on goal,” said Rutledge. “I was hoping that I would hit it in, or somebody on my team would hit it in.”

Well, the ball went in – off the stick of a Marshwood defender.

Marshwood settled down, especially in the second half, and pulled within a goal with 18:28 left in the game when freshman Madison Person scored at the right post.

Marshwood kept the pressure on, forcing Martin-Moore to call a timeout with 14:05 remaining. The message, said junior defender Lydia Wasina, was to keep your composure.

Wasina made a key play with about 6:30 remaining. Costin carried the ball through about six Mustangs and into the circle when Wasina blocked her and reversed the play. She said she was able to do that because she had confidence in her teammates.

“Your teammates are always good about having your back and getting behind to help you if you miss the ball,” she said. “You can be aggressive because everybody has your back.”

Marshwood’s Truesdale gave a lot of credit to Massabesic’s defense.

“They had great low sticks and block tackles,” she said, “and the girls had to alter their playing style to counter that.”

Marshwood had one final corner in the final 30 seconds but couldn’t get off a shot.