Cape Elizabeth junior Karli Chapin, second from left, is congratulated by senior Prezli Piscopo, left, senior Tori McGrath and junior Liv Cochran after the scoring her team’s first goal in Saturday’s 3-0 victory at Yarmouth.

Mike Strout photos.

More photos below.

YARMOUTH—Cape Elizabeth’s girls’ soccer team hasn’t been hindered by lofty expectations.

Instead, the Capers have embraced them and as a result, continue to steamroll the competition.

Saturday evening, Cape Elizabeth went to red-hot Yarmouth, the two-time defending Class B state champion, and took advantage of its opportunities to stay unbeaten on the season.

After junior Karli Chapin opened the scoring midway through the first half, the Capers took a 1-0 lead to halftime.

The Clippers nearly drew even in the second half, but hit the crossbar and Chapin added a second goal in the 59th minute.

Yarmouth couldn’t counter and with 3:55 to play, senior Tori McGrath scored off a corner kick and Cape Elizabeth went on to a 3-0 victory.

The Capers swept the Clippers this regular season, improved to 10-0 and dropped Yarmouth to 6-3 in the process.

“We knew coming in that it would be a tough battle and we didn’t want to sit back on our heels, so we attacked,” Chapin said.

Changing of the guard

After its overwhelming run to the title a year ago, Yarmouth has come back to the pack a bit this fall, but after a slow start, the Clippers have hit their stride.

Yarmouth started with losses at home to York (1-0) and at Cape Elizabeth (1-0, in double-overtime), then discovered its scoring touch as it prevailed at Greely (6-1), at Freeport (4-2), at home against Fryeburg Academy (9-1), at Lake Region (4-0), at home over Poland (4-0) and at home over Gray-New Gloucester (2-0).

Cape Elizabeth, meanwhile, has lived up to its expectations.

The Capers started with a 2-1 win at Greely, then edged visiting Yarmouth, 1-0, in double-overtime, won at York (5-0) and Wells (3-0) beat visiting Gray-New Gloucester (3-0), visiting Freeport (3-0), host Waynflete (5-0), visiting Greely (5-1) and visiting York (2-0).

Entering play Saturday, Yarmouth held a 17-12 edge (with seven ties) over Cape Elizabeth since the start of the 2001 season (see sidebar, below, for recent results). 

This time around, the Capers won in Yarmouth for the first time since 2015.

The lone goal in the first half came due to a bit of good fortune, as Chapin got the ball in the box and steered it into the net, beating Clippers’ junior goalkeeper Hope Olson.

“One of the defenders hit it back with their head and I just followed the ball through,” Chapin said.

The Capers weren’t content with their lead at halftime, as first-year coach Graham Forsyth stressed the need to keep the pressure on.

“The first half was a little bit scrappy, but we talked at halftime that the game was there for us to enjoy,” Forsyth said. “We’ll be a team who attacks, we don’t care who we play or where we go. Yarmouth’s a good team, but we won’t change who we are for anyone.”

Early in the second half, the Clippers pushed for the equalizer, but a shot from junior Hannah Dwyer forced Cape Elizabeth freshman goalkeeper Elise Branch to make a sprawling save and off a corner kick with 26:15 on the clock, junior Hannah Dwyer got her head on the ball, but it ticked off the crossbar to keep the Capers on top.

Then, with 21:49 remaining, Chapin doubled the lead.

The goal was set up by a cross from freshman Maggie Cochran. Chapin waited in the box and with Olson coming out, Chapin headed it over the keeper and into the net for a 2-0 advantage.

“A 1-0 lead is mentally tough to hold, so we knew the next goal, whoever scored it, would win it and we wanted it to be us,” Chapin said. “Maggie’s put crosses on a silver platter and I just went and got it. I just tried to put it on frame.”

“Karli doesn’t enough credit because we have other great players, but she has a great work rate and is really good,” Forsyth said.

With 3:55 to play, Cape Elizabeth scored again, as off a corner kick, senior standout Prezli Piscopo sent the ball in and McGrath redirected it into the goal, bringing the curtain down on a 3-0 victory.

“We played too direct in the first half, but in the second half, we dominated,” Forsyth said. “They hit the crossbar and that could have swung momentum, but we deserved it tonight. We know what we want to do and I have an unbelievable group of girls.”

Yarmouth was largely frustrated, but second-year coach Chris Coleman felt the Clippers made things too easy for the Capers. 

“We gift-wrapped them three goals,” Coleman said. “We put it on a plate for them. I’m not happy how we conceded those goals. I can’t fault the girls because they worked hard, but unfortunately, we couldn’t create enough to put them under pressure. Credit to Cape. If we see Cape in playoffs, we’ll address them then.”

See you again?

The teams could square off in the regional final for the second year in a row, but both have business to attend to first.

Yarmouth (now fifth in the Class B South Heal Points standings) looks to bounce back Tuesday at home versus Greely. The Clippers then host Freeport Friday in their home finale before closing with games at Gray-New Gloucester, Wells and York.

“We’re disappointed, but it’s a long season and we have a big week ahead,” Coleman said. “We know we can play with anyone. We’re Yarmouth High School and with what we’ve achieved in the past, we feel we can beat anyone. We’ll bounce back. We have a big week with Greely and Freeport. Greely you can never write off and Freeport is flying right now.”

Cape Elizabeth (which appears to have a stranglehold on first place in Class B South) returns home Wednesday to face Lake Region. After hosting Fryeburg Academy Friday, the Capers close at Poland and Freeport.

“We just go into every game with our goal to win,” Chapin said. “We want to go as far as we can. We’ll keep playing hard and hopefully it’ll work out.”

“There’s always things we can improve on,” Forsyth said. “If we can find consistency for 80 minutes, we should be state champions, but championships aren’t won on paper. We’re still changing a few things and putting pieces together.”

Sports Editor Michael Hoffer can be reached at [email protected]. Follow him on Twitter: @foresports.

Yarmouth junior Ashlyn Feeley heads the ball away from Cape Elizabeth junior Karli Chapin.

Cape Elizabeth freshman Emily Supple watches the ball.

Yarmouth junior captain Ehryn Groothoff gets her head on the ball as Cape Elizabeth senior Tori McGrath defends.

Cape Elizabeth freshman goalkeeper Elise Branch fields the ball in front of Yarmouth sophomore Parker Harnett.

Prone Yarmouth junior Abi Hincks tries to knock the ball away from Cape Elizabeth sophomore Sami Olsen.

Yarmouth junior Audrey Goessling fires as a shot as Cape Elizabeth freshman Emily Supple defends.

Cape Elizabeth senior Prezli Piscopo heads the ball away from Yarmouth freshman Katelyn D’Appolonia.

Yarmouth sophomore Parker Harnett and Cape Elizabeth sophomore Abbey Agrodnia fight for the ball.

Recent Cape Elizabeth-Yarmouth results

@ Cape Elizabeth 1 Yarmouth 0 (2 OT)

@ Yarmouth 7 Cape Elizabeth 0
Yarmouth 1 @ Cape Elizabeth 0
Class B South Final
@ Yarmouth 1 Cape Elizabeth 0

Yarmouth 5 @ Cape Elizabeth 1
@ Yarmouth 3 Cape Elizabeth 0
Class B South semifinal
@ Yarmouth 3 Cape Elizabeth 1

Cape Elizabeth 3 @ Yarmouth 0
@ Cape Elizabeth 2 Yarmouth 1

@ Yarmouth 2 Cape Elizabeth 1
@ Cape Elizabeth 1 Yarmouth 0
Western B semifinals
Cape Elizabeth 1 @ Yarmouth 0

@ Cape Elizabeth 1 Yarmouth 1 (tie)
Cape Elizabeth 2 @ Yarmouth 1 (2 OT)

@ Cape Elizabeth 2 Yarmouth 0
Cape Elizabeth 2 @ Yarmouth 1

@ Cape Elizabeth 4 Yarmouth 0

Yarmouth 3 @ Cape Elizabeth 1
@ Yarmouth 3 Cape Elizabeth 0

@ Yarmouth 0 Cape Elizabeth 0 (tie)
Yarmouth 1 @ Cape Elizabeth 0

Yarmouth 3 @ Cape Elizabeth 0
@ Yarmouth 1 Cape Elizabeth 0

Yarmouth 2 @ Cape Elizabeth 0
@ Yarmouth 2 Cape Elizabeth 1

@ Yarmouth 2 Cape Elizabeth 0
@ Cape Elizabeth 0 Yarmouth 0 (tie)

Yarmouth 2 @ Cape Elizabeth 0
@ Yarmouth 1 Cape Elizabeth 1 (tie)

@ Yarmouth 1 Cape Elizabeth 1 (tie)
@ Cape Elizabeth 2 Yarmouth 2 (tie)

@ Yarmouth 1 Cape Elizabeth 1 (tie)
Yarmouth 2 @ Cape Elizabeth 1

Cape Elizabeth 1 @ Yarmouth 0

Cape Elizabeth 1 @ Yarmouth 0
@ Cape Elizabeth 4 Yarmouth 1