Yarmouth senior Kurt Heywood, left, is congratulated by junior Anders Corey after scoring a goal during the Clippers’ 10-4 win at Falmouth Friday night. Corey led the way with five goals as Yarmouth beat the Yachtsmen for the first time since 2015.

Ben McCanna / Press Herald photos.

More photos below.


Yarmouth 10 Falmouth 4

Y- 3 1 4 2- 10
F- 1 1 0 2- 4

First quarter
7:47 F Kerr (Alexander)
7:07 Y Garrett (unassisted)
6:26 Y Corey (unassisted)
3:23 Y Hamm (Corey)

Second quarter
7:11 F Alexander (unassisted)
6:40 Y Corey (unassisted)

Third quarter
9:01 Y Garrett (Corey) (MAN-UP)
8:24 Y Corey (unassisted)
2:35 Y Heywood (Corey)
1:34 Y Corey (unassisted)

Fourth quarter
10:58 F Kerr (unassisted)
7:53 Y Hamm (unassisted)
6:44 Y Corey (Hamm)
4:10 F Alexander (St. Louis)

Y- Corey 5, Garrett, Hamm 2, Heywood 1
F- Alexander, Kerr 2

Y- Corey 3, Hamm 1
F- Alexander, St. Louis 1

Faceoffs (Yarmouth, 12-6)
Y- Primeau 12 of 18
F- S. Allen 6 of 18

Ground balls:
Y- 22
F- 21

F- 19

Y- 37
F- 17

Shots on cage:
Y- 22
F- 11

Y (King) 7
F (Noyes) 12

FALMOUTH—Something had to give when two teams at a crossroads squared off in  midseason, crossover boys’ lacrosse showdown Friday evening.

Host Falmouth was coming off two straight losses and needed to find a way to succeed on offense without junior standout Tommy Fitzgerald, who is sidelined the rest of the season with a knee injury.

Visiting Yarmouth, in a haunting flashback to last spring, had suffered a pair of one-goal losses and needed a statement victory.

And the Clippers went out and achieved exactly that.

Yarmouth, thanks to the effort of senior faceoff specialist Griffin Primeau, controlled possession and the Clippers made the most of their opportunities with the ball, as junior Anders Corey scored five times.

Yarmouth took a 3-1 lead after one quarter, was up, 4-2, entering the second half, then scored four unanswered goals in the third period to pull away en route to a 10-4 victory.

Senior Andrew Garrett and junior Gavin Hamm added two goals apiece for the Clippers who snapped a five-game skid against the Yachtsmen, improved to 5-2 and in the process, dropped Falmouth to 5-3 on the year.

“The only losses we’ve had this year were by one goal against teams that were undefeated,” said Yarmouth coach David Pearl. “We came in feeling like we needed to win a big game. Our mantra was that we needed to play a complete game, all four quarters. We’ve had flashes of greatness and needed to figure out a way to sustain that.”

Finding answers

After a narrow loss to Thornton Academy in last year’s Class A state final, Falmouth started 2019 strong with a 9-3 win at Kennebunk, then handled visiting Gorham, 16-7, and visiting Scarborough, 14-9, before winning at Scarborough (14-10) and blanking visiting Cheverus, 15-0. Last Friday, in the game where Fitzgerald went down with injury, the Yachtsmen were stymied at Cape Elizabeth (9-4), then Wednesday, they fell at South Portland (13-9).

Yarmouth, meanwhile, beat visiting Greely in the rain in its first game, 13-4, then dropped an overtime heartbreaker at Cape Elizabeth, 8-7, before handling visiting Kennebunk (13-5) and winning at North Yarmouth Academy (16-2). After last Friday’s 13-12 loss at South Portland, the Clippers held off visiting York Tuesday, 14-11.

A year ago, Falmouth eked out an 8-7 win at Yarmouth on Henry Farnham’s late goal to make it five in a row in the series.

Friday, on another chilly (49 degrees) and wet evening, the Clippers earned their first win over the Yachtsmen since May 19, 2015 (8-6 in Falmouth), thanks to solid efforts from players all over the field.

The Yachtsmen actually scored first, as sophomore Wyatt Kerr finished a feed from senior Peter Alexander in transition with 7:47 to go in the opening quarter, but 40 seconds later, Garrett answered unassisted.

With 6:26 remaining in the frame, Corey scored for the first time, unassisted, and Yarmouth was on top to stay.

With 3:23 to go in the first, Corey set up Hamm for a shot that Falmouth sophomore goalie A.J. Noyes couldn’t stop and the Clippers took a 3-1 lead to the second period.

There, Yarmouth couldn’t deliver a knockout blow and the Yachtsmen stayed close.

The hosts drew within one with 7:11 left in the half, as Alexander beat Clippers junior goalie Spencer King unassisted to snap a 12 minute, 36 second drought, but 31 seconds later, Corey scored unassisted and Yarmouth was able to maintain a two-goal advantage at the break.

In the first 24 minutes, the Clippers had a 15-10 edge in shots and got five saves from King.

Yarmouth would then open it up in the third quarter, as Primeau won four of five faceoffs to set the tone.

With 9:23 left in the frame, Falmouth senior defensive standout Riley Reed was called for the game’s first penalty, a one-minute slashing transgression, and the Clippers took advantage, as Corey fed Garrett for a man-up goal and a 5-2 lead.

Thirty-seven seconds later, Corey added an unassisted tally.

With 2:35 on the clock, Corey fed senior Kurt Heywood for a goal and with 1:34 left, Corey scored unassisted again to make it a commanding 8-2 advantage.

“We knew what we had to do,” Corey said. “We noticed (their defenders) were slow to recover and that the re-dodge would be there. We just had to keep working the ball around. Gavin played a great game. He took (Reed) out of the game and I knew I’d have more opportunities. I just try to get an extra step on the defender and find a doorway to shoot through.”

“It’s the first time in awhile we didn’t come out in the third quarter guns ablazing,” lamented Falmouth coach Dave Barton. “Credit to (Yarmouth).”

With 10:58 remaining in the game, the Yachtsmen snapped a 20:13 drought when Kerr scored unassisted, but Hamm’s unassisted goal with 7:53 remaining and Corey’s fifth and final goal (assisted by Hamm) with 6:44 on the clock ended all doubt.

Alexander (from senior Iyendae St. Louis in transition) scored Falmouth’s final goal with 4:10 to go and from there, Yarmouth clamped down and ran out the clock on its 10-4 victory.

“We’ve either been a first quarter team, or a first half team, and we couldn’t play a complete game, but tonight we did,” said Primeau.

“It’s a big win,” Corey said. “This shows we’re a real contender. We’ve had some tough losses, but only by one goal. We’re hungry. We keep fighting. We knew from previous games we played well in the first half, then died off in the second. Teams were able to come back on us. We knew we had to play well in the second half tonight.”

“Coach Barton’s team had a lot of fight in them,” Pearl added. “They’re a dangerous team and we talked about that at halftime. We hadn’t finished and that can eat away at your confidence, but credit to our guys, they kept digging in.

“Tonight, I’m so proud because we got more of the team involved. More guys got in and gained confidence. I’m proud of how hard they’ve worked. To see it come together is why you coach.”

Corey continued his onslaught on opposing goalies with five goals and he added three assists.

Hamm, despite being hounded by Reed, managed a pair of goals and one assist.

“Gavin had Riley on him all night, so he had to pick his spots and he played an excellent game,” Pearl said. “What we’re proud of is yes, we have some big playmakers, but a number of our goals were off three or four passes. They were some of our prettier goals we’ve had this season. When you see four, five guys touch the ball before a goal, it’s great team play. That’s what we do when we play our best. ”

Garrett also had two goals, while Heywood added one.

Primeau won 12 of 18 faceoffs against Falmouth junior Shane Allen, including eight of 10 in the second half.

“We’ve worked a lot with our wing play,” said Primeau. “(Sophomore) Wyatt (Sullivan), our backup faceoff guy, who has been grinding a lot in practice, played an incredible game.”

“I want to give props to Griffin, who dominated the faceoff circle,” Pearl said. “Wyatt Sullivan was on Riley and he boxed him out all night. Riley is a wrecking ball and you have to try to work around him.”

“Griffin played well,” Barton said. “Shane’s a big boy and Griffin held his own.”

King made seven saves.

The Clippers had a 22-21 edge in ground balls (Hamm led the way with a game-high four), enjoyed a 37-17 shots advantage (22-11 on cage) and overcame 15 turnovers.

Falmouth got two goals apiece from Alexander and Kerr. Alexander and St. Louis each had one assist.

Noyes stopped 12 shots.

Sophomore Sam Gearan and junior Max Orestis each collected three ground balls.

The Yachtsmen turned the ball over 19 times as they suffered a third consecutive loss for the first time since dropping four in a row May 21-June 4, 2008.

“We just couldn’t possess and we had too many turnovers,” Barton lamented. “You can’t win with that many turnovers. I just told the guys that it’s not an effort thing, it’s not a scheme thing. There’s just no substitute for stick-work and we’ve got to get better.

“Anders has a very good change of direction and Gavin’s a bull. I thought Riley and Max played well on them, but we played 75, 80 percent of the game on defense and eventually, the dam will break.”

No time to waste

Falmouth seeks to bounce back at home against Deering Tuesday, then plays at defending Class B champion Brunswick Friday. After going to Sanford, the Yachtsmen finish the year at home versus Thornton Academy in a state final rematch.

“Tom’s been a leader who is taking a coaching role for us now,” Barton said. “(Senior) Reilly Tucker has stepped up in a big way, but we have young guys who need to step up. One guy won’t take over and replace (Fitzgerald). We’ll have a good practice tomorrow and we’ll get back at it.”

Yarmouth seeks to bounce back Tuesday at Lake Region. After hosting Scarborough Thursday, the Clippers have a tough finishing kick, welcoming Cape Elizabeth, going to Greely, then closing at home versus defending Class C champion Waynflete.

“Tonight shows that if we can play a complete game like that, it will be scary for the rest of the state,” Primeau said. “Last year, we lost five one-goal games. All season, our mindset is to not be that team. We’ve worked hard in practice. If we play our game, there’s no one who can beat us. I really believe that. Defense through offense, through our bench staying focused. The whole nine yards.”

“We have a lot of spunk,” Pearl said. “Even after disappointing losses, we have fun in practice. We like to be together. We’re not going to turn this into a grind. We’ve got a lot more lacrosse to come. We’ll get back to work tomorrow.”

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

Yarmouth junior Gavin Hamm goes airborne for a shot over Falmouth sophomore Sam Gearan.

Falmouth senior Iyendae St. Louis races up the field with Yarmouth senior Cole Buchanan giving chase.

Falmouth’s Zach Derhak looks to shoot as Yarmouth junior Gavin Hamm defends.

Yarmouth senior Andrew Garrett, who scored twice, is defended by Falmouth senior Zach Dubinsky.

Yarmouth junior Anders Corey shoots on Falmouth sophomore A.J. Noyes.

Yarmouth junior Gavin Hamm is hounded by Falmouth senior Riley Reed.

Recent Falmouth-Yarmouth meetings

Falmouth 8 @ Yarmouth 7

@ Falmouth 16 Yarmouth 6
Falmouth 13 @ Yarmouth 5

Falmouth 12 @ Yarmouth 7
Class B state final
Falmouth 13 Yarmouth 9 

Yarmouth 8 @ Falmouth 6 

Falmouth 17 @ Yarmouth 12

@ Yarmouth 10 Falmouth 9 (OT) 
Yarmouth 15 @ Falmouth 14 (OT)

@ Falmouth 14 Yarmouth 7
Falmouth 12 @ Yarmouth 6

Falmouth 14 @ Yarmouth 5
@ Falmouth 17 Yarmouth 0

Yarmouth 7 @ Falmouth 4
@ Yarmouth 8 Falmouth 6

Yarmouth 18 @ Falmouth 5

@ Yarmouth 17 Falmouth 2

@ Yarmouth 13 Falmouth 2

@ Yarmouth 19 Falmouth 6

@ Yarmouth 18 Falmouth 1

Yarmouth 13 @ Falmouth 2

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