Yarmouth senior Abi Thornton is defended by Greely senior Madi Scott during the Clippers’ 14-6 victory Wednesday night.

BOX SCORE

Yarmouth 14 Greely 6

Y- 7 7- 14
G- 3 3- 6

First half
24:17 Y Groothoff (D’Appolonia)
16:31 Y Abi Thornton (unassisted)
12:55 Y Grant (D’Appolonia)
11:52 G Bennert (Clement)
10:26 Y D’Appolonia (unassisted)
9:20 Y Teare (free position)
8:37 G Holt (unassisted)
6:51 Y Abi Thornton (free position)
2:39 G Clement (Goldburg)
32.1 Y Groothoff (D’Appolonia)

Second half
21:29 Y Teare (Grondin)
20:35 G Bennert (free position)
20:15 Y Abi Thornton (unassisted)
16:34 Y Abi Thornton (unassisted)
16:29 Y Abi Thornton (D’Appolonia)
16:04 Y D’Appolonia (Grant)
7:00 Y Groothoff (Marston)
4:55 G M. Perfetti (free position)
3:29 G Dean-Muncie (Goldburg)
2:21 Y Abi Thornton (free position)

Goals:
Y- Abi Thornton 6, Groothoff 3, D’Appolonia, Teare 2, Grant 1
G- Bennert 2, Clement, Dean-Muncie, Holt, M. Perfetti 1

Assists:
Y- D’Appolonia 4, Grant, Grondin, Marston 1
G- Goldburg 2, Clement 1

Draws (11-11)
Y- Groothoff 9 of 18, Grondin 2 of 4
G- Goldburg 9 of 18, Bennert 1 of 2, M. Perfetti 1 of 2

Ground balls:
Y- 47
G- 33

Turnovers:
Y- 17
G- 23

Shots:
Y- 24
G- 13

Shots on cage:
Y- 20
G- 9

Saves:
Y (Serrano) 3
G (H. Perfetti) 6 

CUMBERLAND—Be it offense, defense, veterans or freshmen, everything and everyone is clicking right now for Yarmouth’s girls’ lacrosse team.

And the latest squad to find that out the hard way was the Greely Rangers in a late-season showdown Wednesday evening at Glenn A. Hutchins Field.

The Clippers’ defense stymied Greely from start to finish, while Yarmouth’s offense was its usual prolific, balanced self, as senior Abi Thornton led the way with a lot of help from freshman Katelyn D’Appolonia.

Goals from junior Ehryn Groothoff, Thornton and senior Hannah Grant spelled a quick 3-0 lead and after the Rangers got on the board courtesy junior Katie Bennert, D’Appolonia and sophomore Natalie Teare answered for the visitors for a 5-1 advantage.

The Rangers would twice draw within three goals, but the Clippers held a 7-3 lead at halftime, then, they pulled away in the second half, as Thornton scored three straight goals, and Yarmouth went on to a 14-6 victory.

Thornton scored six goals, Groothoff added three and D’Appolonia had two, with four assists, as the Clippers won their ninth game in a row, improved to 10-1 and dropped Greely to 8-3, snapping the Rangers’ five-game win streak in the process.

“I’m so happy,” said Yarmouth coach Dorothy Holt. “My girls played the best game they’ve played all season. We came in a little nervous about playing on grass and we knew Greely would be strong, but I’m proud of how we played.”

Getting closer

Yarmouth and Greely, along with Cape Elizabeth, again appear to be the teams to beat in Class B this spring.

The Rangers started with a 14-7 victory at North Yarmouth Academy, then lost to Kennebunk, in a game played on NYA’s turf, 11-4. After enjoying a 16-4 home win over Morse and a 10-5 victory at Waynflete, Greely fell at Gorham, 11-6, but the Rangers bounced back to defeat host York (14-6), visiting Lake Region, the reigning Class C state champion, 13-7, visiting Freeport (15-7), host Scarborough (11-10) and host St. Dom’s (7-6, in overtime).

The Clippers started with a 14-7 home win over Freeport and after losing late to visiting Massabesic, 10-9, Yarmouth eked out a pivotal 7-6 victory at Kennebunk, then got a measure of revenge from last year with a 14-11 home win over Cape Elizabeth in a Class B state final rematch and rolled at North Yarmouth Academy, 13-2, and at home over St. Dom’s (17-7). The Clippers then defeated host Marshwood (14-7), Lake Region (15-4) and York (13-5) before downing visiting Messalonskee, 14-5, last Thursday.

Last year, Yarmouth eked out a 12-10 home win over Greely behind five goals from Meredith Lane.

Wednesday, on Greely’s Senior Night, the Rangers sought their first victory over the Clippers since May 23, 2005 (8-7 at home), but Yarmouth started strong, didn’t look back and made it 15 straight wins in the series (see sidebar, below).

It took the Clippers all of 43 seconds to go on top to stay, as on their first possession, D’Appolonia set up Groothoff for a shot which eluded Greely sophomore goalie Hannah Perfetti.

It took nearly eight minutes for Yarmouth to score again, but the Rangers couldn’t generate any offense of their own.

After Perfetti robbed senior Kyaira Grondin, Thornton scored her first goal, unassisted, with 16:31 left in the first half.

After Greely senior Natalie Mullin hit the crossbar on a free position, the Clippers went up, 3-0, as D’Appolonia set up Grant with 12:55 on the clock, forcing Rangers coach Becca Koelker to call timeout.

It helped momentarily, as Bennert took a pass from senior Brooke Clement and beat Yarmouth junior goalie Izzy Serrano to cut the deficit to two.

D’Appolonia got that goal right back at the 10:26 mark, pouncing on a loose ball in front before beating Perfetti, then, with 9:20 left, Teare scored on a free position for a 5-1 lead.

With 8:37 remaining, Greely junior Ellie Holt scored unassisted, dealing a momentary blow to her mother’s team, but Thornton answered on a free position with 6:51 left, restoring the Clippers’ four-goal advantage.

With 2:39 to go, the Rangers again drew within three goals, as in transition, sophomore Sam Goldburg passed to Clement for a goal, but with 32.1 seconds on the clock, in traffic, D’Appolonia threaded the ball to Groothoff for a 7-3 advantage which lasted into halftime.

In the first 25 minutes, Yarmouth held a 10-4 edge in shots and forced 14 Greely turnovers.

The second half proved to be more of the same.

Teare got things started by scoring from Grondin with 21:29 to play.

Bennert got a goal back with a free position shot with 20:35 left, but Thornton then scored three straight goals to put it away.

The first goal came unassisted with 20:15 remaining.

Thornton then weaved through the defense and scored unassisted with 16:34 left and then off the ensuing draw, D’Appolonia got the ball and fed Thornton for an 11-4 lead.

D’Appolonia scored for the second time (from Grant) with 16:04 on the clock.

“I’ve loved (playing varsity),” D’Appolonia said. “It’s been so much fun. A great experience. A lot of people have helped me and the coaches have made it fun for me.” 

“I think the upperclassmen are giving Katelyn the go-ahead,” Dorothy Holt said. “The seniors are helping her and giving her confidence. She’s talented. She’s stepping up into being a playmaker as a freshman.”

Groothoff then scored (with sophomore Maddie Marston getting an assist) with 7 minutes to play, making it 13-4.

The Rangers ended the Clippers’ 5-0 run with 4:55 on the clock, as senior Maddy Perfetti converted a free position.

With 3:29 left, Goldburg set up sophomore Elsa Dean-Muncie for a goal, but that’s as close as Greely would get and with 2:21 to go, Thornton’s free position goal accounted for the 14-6 final score.

“We have a lot of chemistry and that helps us connect on the field,” said D’Appolonia. “We focus on coming out strong and playing strong all game.”

“The girls placed their shots well today,” said Dorothy Holt. “We had to work hard, as expected.”

Thornton had a game-high six goals, while Groothoff added three. D’Appolonia and Teare both had two goals and Grant finished with one.

D’Appolonia had four assists, while Grant, Grondin and Marston finished with one each.

Serrano made three saves.

Yarmouth had a 47-33 edge in ground balls (Groothoff led the way with nine and D’Appolonia collected seven), a 24-13 shots advantage (20-9 on cage) and overcame 17 turnovers.

Greely got two goals from Bennert and one apiece from Clement, Dean-Muncie, Holt and Maddy Perfetti and had trouble with Yarmouth’s defense most of the night.

“We’re pretty good at practicing the way we play,” said Clippers senior defender Isabel Brennan. “We practice ground balls and that helps us. Our team loves each other and we want to play for each other. We’re young, but we have a lot of talent and we play well together.”

“Our secret weapon was that (Class of 2018 graduates) Hannah Corey, Meredith Lane and Callie Decker came to practice yesterday and they cheered on the defense and it gave the defense a skip in their step today,” said Dorothy Holt. “Sometimes you need a little push this time of year.”

Goldburg had two assists, while Clement finished with one.

Hannah Perfetti made six saves.

Bennert had a team-high eight ground balls.

The Rangers turned the ball over 23 times.

“We didn’t keep possession of the ball,” Koelker lamented. “We knew it would take the small things to win and we didn’t do that. We never got our momentum going. (Yarmouth’s) so strong everywhere. They’re so fast and their stickwork is so good in tight and they can make quick dishes for goals.”

Finale

Greely (ranked third in the Class B Heal Points standings) closes at Cape Elizabeth Thursday. A win there could leapfrog the Rangers into the No. 2 spot for the playoffs, which would mean Greely would be home for the first two rounds.

“We’re back at it tomorrow and I think we’ll be ready,” Koelker said. “This probably won’t be the last time we see one of those two teams (Yarmouth and Cape Elizabeth). It will be good for us to help figure things out.”

Yarmouth finishes up Friday at home versus Waynflete. With the top seed in Class B wrapped up, the Clippers will treat the game as a playoff tune-up and will look to extend their win streak to 10.

“We have to keep playing strong, play like a team and play like we do in practice,” said D’Appolonia.

“Homefield is important for us,” said Brennan. “We want to win. We’ll work as hard as we can.”

“It’s almost playoff time and we still have work to do,” Dorothy Holt added. “Playing on the turf is an advantage for us with our speed.”

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

Recent Yarmouth-Greely results

2018
@ Yarmouth 12 Greely 10

2017
@ Yarmouth 9 Greely 3

2016
@ Yarmouth 10 Greely 4

2015
@ Yarmouth 11 Greely 10

2014
@ Yarmouth 11 Greely 9 

2011
Yarmouth 17 @ Greely 8

2010
Yarmouth 11 @ Greely 7
@ Yarmouth 15 Greely 10

2009
Yarmouth 20 @ Greely 8

2008
Yarmouth 12 @ Greely 9
@ Yarmouth 13 Greely 12

2007
@ Yarmouth 17 Greely 5

2006
Yarmouth 9 @ Greely 5
@ Yarmouth 13 Greely 11 (OT)

2005
@ Greely 8 Yarmouth 7

2004
@ Yarmouth 10 Greely 3

2003
@ Greely 10 Yarmouth 5

2002
@ Yarmouth 17 Greely 4
Yarmouth 14 @ Greely 7