YARMOUTH — For the seventh time in the last eight seasons, the Yarmouth girls’ lacrosse team will play for a state championship.

The top-seeded Clippers posed too many threats for Messalonskee, getting six goals from senior midfielder Eva Then and five from sophomore Ehryn Groothoff on its way to a 17-10 win Wednesday in a Class B semifinal.

Yarmouth will play for the program’s seventh state title on Saturday against No. 2 Cape Elizabeth at Fitzpatrick Stadium in Portland.

“We have a few go-to plays that give us possession for a good amount of time in the attacking half,” Then said. “We’ve really just been working those plays, making good passes and being consistent. That’s what’s been helping us.”

While things have changed dramatically in the girls’ lacrosse scene this season – with the restructuring of Class B into a single statewide division and the addition of Class C – none of the changes have affected Yarmouth, the Class B state champion in 2006, 2007, 2011, 2014 and 2015. The Clippers also won a Class A title in 2002.

Kennebunk, which handed Yarmouth consecutive losses in the state final in 2016 and 2017, is now in Class A. Messalonskee (9-5), meanwhile, dropped to Class B this season after losing in the Class A final a year ago.

The reshuffling did little to slow the Clippers, whose only two losses have come against Class A competition. The only thing missing Wednesday was the presentation of a regional championship trophy for the Clippers, who won the last five regional titles.

“Last year, we had an undefeated (regular) season and didn’t really experience a loss (before the playoffs),” Then said. “Now, we know what it’s like to be down against really good opponents. I think that’s going to help us, and we can use it to our advantage (Saturday).”

Senior midfielder Meredith Lane was a catalyst for the Clippers, finishing with two goals and six assists. Whether she was setting up Then or Groothoff, she seemed never to make a poor decision with the ball.

“Meredith has ball control, and so does Eva,” Yarmouth Coach Dorothy Holt said. “They can make all their teammates look good. They can hold the ball and create a sense of calm.”

After the fifth of six Ally Turner goals for Messalonskee cut Yarmouth’s lead to 12-8 early in the second half, Holt called a timeout. Her team responded with goals 35 seconds apart from Groothoff and Then.

“You just have to know if the fast break is on, the fast break is on,” Then said. “If it’s not, you have to pull right out, settle, and give a little bit of time for the middies to take a breath so you can go right back at it again.”

The Clippers were so efficient that they killed off two prolonged man-down situations, one in each half, by simply holding the ball long enough for the penalty to expire.

“They have great team chemistry and a team bond,” Messalonskee Coach Crystal Leavitt said. “They work hard together. They’re a great team.”

Junior goalie Isabella Serrano made six saves for Yarmouth, keeping Messalonskee off the board on four of their eight free position restarts.

Only subscribers are eligible to post comments. Please subscribe or to participate in the conversation. Here’s why.

Use the form below to reset your password. When you've submitted your account email, we will send an email with a reset code.