Falmouth’s girls’ lacrosse team celebrates a goal during Thursday’s 8-5 home win over Massabesic in a Class A state game rematch.

Shawn Patrick Ouellette / Portland Press Herald photos.

More photos below.

BOX SCORE

Falmouth 8 Massabesic 5

M- 4 1- 5
F- 3 5- 8

First half
24:16 F Camelio (unassisted)
22:04 M Renaud (Ouellette)
19:41 F Clement (free position)
15:31 M Renaud (Forrester)
12:11 F Clement (Camelio)
10:47 M Ouellette (unassisted)
0.0 M Ouellette (Desvergnes)

Second half
24:06 F Oakes (unassisted)
22:45 F Camelio (Clement)
21:32 F Sarazin (unassisted)
17:59 F Camelio (free position)
17:44 M Forrester (Renaud)
5:21 F Sarazin (free position)

Goals:
M- Ouellette, Renaud 2, Forrester 1
F- Camelio 3, Clement, Sarazin 2, Oakes 1

Assists:
M- Desvergnes, Ouellette, Renaud 1
F- Camelio, Clement 1

Draws (Falmouth, 11-3)
M- Jacobs 2 of 7, Renaud 1 of 7
F- Sarazin 11 of 14

Ground balls:
M- 23
F- 32

Turnovers:
M- 14
F- 18

Shots:
M- 17
F- 18

Shots on cage:
M- 9
F- 13

Saves:
M (Castle) 5
F (Dubinsky) 4

FALMOUTH—Thursday evening’s Falmouth-Massabesic girls’ lacrosse battle felt like a state final.

Minus the Fitzpatrick Stadium setting and warm temperatures, anyway.

In a rematch of last year’s Class A state game, won by the Yachtsmen, two very skilled teams once again produced a close contest, one which saw Falmouth, again, do enough to prevail.

The Yachtsmen three times took first half leads, on goals from senior standout Caitlyn Camelio, sophomore Eva Clement and Clement again, but each time, the Mustangs rallied, as senior Skylar Renaud scored twice and senior Kenzy Ouellette also helped produce a tie.

Then, as time expired in the first half, Ouellette scored again and Massabesic enjoyed a 4-3 lead and seemingly had the momentum.

But then the second half began and Falmouth roared to life.

Just 54 seconds into the second half, senior Christina Oakes scored on a rebound to tie the game and Camelio followed with a goal for the lead.

Senior Kayla Sarazin, who was exceptional all night in the draw circle, added a goal on a rebound and with 17:59 to play, Camelio gave the Yachtsmen their fourth goal in just over a six-minute span for a 7-4 advantage.

The Mustangs tried to rally, as senior Kailyn Forrester scored, but Falmouth’s defense slammed the door from there and Sarazin’s free position with 5:21 to go helped the Yachtsmen go on to an 8-5 victory.

Camelio had a game-high three goals, Sarazin scored twice and won 11 draws, as Falmouth finished the regular season 11-1 and ended Massabesic’s regular season at 9-3 in the process.

“It had playoff energy, for sure,” said Yachtsmen coach Ashley Pullen. “We were fired up for it. We knew it would be a tight game. We knew we had our work cut out for us.”

Rematch

A year ago, Falmouth was a decided underdog heading into the Class A state game, but the Yachtsmen shot to a 6-3 halftime lead and held on for a 10-7 victory behind four goals from Camelio.

Falmouth returned every player but one this spring and hasn’t disappointed, despite wearing the bulls-eye.

After opening with a 10-2 win at Biddeford, the Yachtsmen edged visiting Kennebunk, 8-7, in an overtime thriller. Wins at Messalonskee (16-7) and at home over Marshwood (14-1) followed before Falmouth was upset at Windham, 7-6. The Yachtsmen then got back on track with a 10-2 victory at Waynflete and after that came decisive wins over visiting Scarborough (14-3), visiting Lewiston (10-0), host Cheverus (14-7), visiting Bonny Eagle (17-2) and host Thornton Academy (14-4).

Massabesic has established itself as an annual title contender and the 2019 campaign has been no different.

After a 13-2 home win over Thornton Academy to start the season, the Mustangs rallied late to edge host Yarmouth, 10-9, then handled host Bonny Eagle (19-5), visiting South Portland (15-7), visiting Marshwood (15-8), visiting York (9-3) and host Scarborough (12-4). Massabesic’s first loss came at home to Windham, 10-9, then the Mustangs fell at Cape Elizabeth by that same score. Massabesic righted its ship with a 14-8 home victory over Kennebunk, then defeated host Gorham, 6-2, Tuesday.

The teams also met last year in the regular season, an 11-9 home win for the Mustangs.

Thursday, on another chilly evening (54 degrees at the start), and on Falmouth’s Senior Night, Massabesic was hoping for a measure of revenge from last year’s state game, but the Yachtsmen earned their first regular season victory over Massabesic since a 17-3 road triumph April 30, 2011.

Sarazin won the opening draw, Falmouth transitioned to offense and Camelio got the ball and after getting past a defender, she beat Mustangs senior goalie Katie Castle for an unassisted goal and a 1-0 lead just 44 seconds into the game.

Massabesic’s first settled offensive possession resulted in the tying goal, as Ouellette passed to Renaud, whose shot eluded Yachtsmen junior goalie Hannah Dubinsky to tie the score.

Falmouth retook the lead, 2-1, when Clement scored on a free position with 19:41 on the clock.

Then, in a sign of frustrating things to come, the Mustangs failed to convert three straight free position opportunities, as Ouellette had a shot deflected high by Camelio, Ouellette had a shot saved by Dubinsky and sophomore Camryn Champlin missed high.

With 15:31 remaining in the half, Renaud managed to tie the score, finishing a feed from Forrester, but after Castle saved shots by Sarazin and Camelio, Camelio set up Clement for a go-ahead goal and a 3-2 lead with 12:11 left before halftime.

The Yachtsmen wouldn’t score again before the break, however, and Massabesic took advantage.

With 10:47 on the clock, Ouellette found some room and finished unassisted.

Then, after Dubinsky denied sophomore Noelle Desvergnes and freshman Micaela Jacobs missed wide, Desvergnes earned a free position with 4.5 seconds left. She wasn’t able to convert, but earned another opportunity with just over a second to go and when the whistle blew, Desvergnes eschewed a shot and passed to Ouellette, who one-timed a shot into the net as the horn sounded and since the ball was out of her stick before the scoreboard read 0.0, the goal counted and the Mustangs held a 4-3 lead.

In the first half, Sarazin won all seven draws, but the difference was Falmouth’s inability to hold on to the ball, as the hosts turned it over 11 times.

While it appeared Massabesic had the momentum going into the second half, it wasn’t long until the Yachtsmen turned things around.

“As frustrating as it is to give up a goal at that time, I said at halftime, ‘We’ll use this to our advantage,'” said Pullen. “I was OK only being down a goal to Massabesic at halftime. It gave them the fire to come from behind. I told them, ‘This is your field. It’s your Senior Night. You’re defending state champs and there’s nothing they’d like more than to avenge that loss, so don’t give them that satisfaction.'”

Just 54 seconds into the second half, after Sarazin won possession, Camelio fired a shot which Castle saved, but Oakes was in the right place at the right time to scoop up the rebound and bury it to tie the score, 4-4, ending Falmouth’s 13 minute, 5 second drought in the process.

“That first goal really said we’re here to play,” Pullen said. “This game was so psychological. Once we got one, the goals started to fall.”

Sure enough, the Yachtsmen went on top to stay with 22:45 to play, as Clement set up Camelio.

The hosts kept the pressure on, as Oakes had a shot saved by Castle and Sarazin had the same result, but the rebound sat free in front and Sarazin, the hockey standout, managed to flick the ball with her stick into the net for a 6-4 lead.

“(The ball) came out and my hockey instincts just came out,” said Sarazin. “We were forcing it a little bit in the first half. We just looked for the open person in the second half.”

After Ouellette missed high on a free position, Falmouth got its fourth goal in a 6 minute, 7 second span, as Camelio finished a free position to make it a three-score contest.

Massabesic answered with 15 seconds later, with 17:44 to play, as Renaud set up Forrester for a goal, but despite several chances, the Mustangs wouldn’t score again.

With 12:03 left, Renaud missed high on a free position.

Thirty-two seconds later, Ouellette had a free position, but shot wide.

“Our defense is amazing,” Sarazin said. “(Senior) Natalie (Birkel) runs the defense and we all trust each other.”

“We got in fast on the free positions,” Camelio said. “We came into the game ready to stop them.”

“I was really proud of the way we defended on free positions,” Pullen added. “We frustrated them. Sometimes, my girls get overly aggressive or chase more than they should, but they were disciplined about executing our (defensive) plan and that’s a big reason why we won.”

Then, with 9:44 to play, Massabesic had a golden opportunity to make it a one-goal game, as Dubinsky’s clearing pass was picked off by Ouellette, who raced in one-on-one with the goalie, but she was stopped cold by Dubinsky, keeping the score 7-5.

Then, with 5:21 on the clock, Sarazin earned a free position and rifled a shot past Castle to essentially put it away.

“I’ve been practicing (free position shots) a lot,” Sarazin said. “It’s like a slapshot in hockey. I tried to step back and shoot.”

Sarazin won the ensuing draw and Falmouth was able to run more than a minute off the clock before turning the ball over.

The Mustangs would give it right back and from there, the Yachtsmen were able to drain the clock and celebrate their 8-5 victory.

“It feels good,” said Camelio. “(Massabesic’s) a great team. We came in hyped up and it was a great game all around. We’re such a close team. At halftime, we talked about wanting it for all the seniors and getting momentum going into playoffs. We came out hard and won the game. Every single girl on our team has grit and determination.”

“This means a ton,” said Sarazin. “Massabesic’s such a good team. Playing them was really fun. We were a little jittery in the first half. We calmed down in the second half.”

“It’s hard sometimes to have a team that’s got lots of seniors and lots of talent, but from the get-go this season, the girls were confident, but not overly confident,” Pullen added. “There wasn’t ego or cockiness. That’s fed into why we’re here today.”

Camelio scored three times and had an assist.

Sarazin scored twice and won 11 of 14 draws.

“(Caitlyn and Kayla are) everything (to our team),” said Pullen. “I know if there’s a ground ball five yards in their vicinity, no matter how many defenders are there, they’ll probably come up with it. If there’s a draw anywhere near them, they’ll come up with it. As amazing as Caitlyn is with her firepower on the attacking end and as amazing as Kayla is in the draw circle, their hands and their presence are huge. We don’t rely entirely on them, because we have other weapons as well, but the team takes a sigh of relief when they have the ball. That has a ripple effect on the rest of the team.”

Clement (one assist) also had two goals and Oakes finished with one goal.

Dubinsky made four saves.

Sarazin won 11 of 14 draws, often snaring the ball out of midair herself.

“Kayla’s awesome,” Camelio said. “She’s absolutely amazing. I don’t know how she does it.”

Falmouth held a 32-23 advantage in ground balls (Sarazin collected eight and Clement had seven), had an 18-17 edge in shots (13-9 on cage) and overcame 18 turnovers.

Massabesic got two goals apiece from Ouellette and Renaud and one from Forrester.

Desvergnes, Ouellette and Renaud all had one assist.

Castle made five saves.

Ouellette had a team-high seven ground balls.

The Mustangs only turned the ball over 14 times.

“Sometimes the ball bounces your way and sometimes it doesn’t,” said Massabesic coach Brooks Bowen. “When you play a great team, every possession matters. (Falmouth’s) a great team. We know that.

“We’re still young. We’re still making young mistakes, but what we’ve done the last three, four games, we’ve come out and competed.”

Title quest begins

Massabesic will likely be the second seed in Class A South behind Kennebunk and will host a quarterfinal Wednesday.

“I feel pretty good,” Bowen said. “I see a little bit of growth every day. We’ve got things to work on. We’ll take on whoever shows up.”

Falmouth is ranked first in Class A North at press time, but Pullen believes that when the final Heal Points standings are released, the Yachtsmen will be a close second to Windham, but they’ll earn a bye into the semifinal round Saturday, June 8.

“We’re just getting better and better,” Camelio said. “Windham was a tough loss, but it was a great game. We’ve just built up from there. We just have to come to practice 110 percent like we have and keep it up,”

“We’d love to have that Windham game back,” said Sarazin. “That was a tough game. We have to be focused. We’ll have a ton of tough competition on the way, but we just have to play our game.”

“The path to the A North championship will go through grass,” Pullen added. “We’ll spend a lot of time on grass. The girls are hungry. This group is in it to win it.”

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

Falmouth senior Kayla Sarazin scoops up a ground ball. Sarazin was once again dominant in the draw circle, winning 11 of 14 opportunities.

Falmouth senior Caitlyn Camelio, who had a game-high three goals, drives on the Massabesic defense.

Falmouth senior Kayla Sarazin races up the field as Massabesic seniors Skylar Renaud, left, and Kenzy Ouellette give chase.


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