WINDHAM—The Eagles owe their survival vs. Portland on Thursday, Sept. 12 in large part to Sarah Talon.

Talon hammered home two goals for Windham – including a late-gamer to bring her girls back even with the Bulldogs, 2-2.

2-2 is where the score settled out.

Emma Baker curls upfield. Adam Birt / Lakes Region Weekly

“We will take a tie,” Windham head coach Deb Lebel said. “They showed a lot of heart; they came back. We haven’t been in this high-pressure situation. We’ve got a lot of kids who haven’t been on varsity before. So we’re really proud of them. A tie’s not going to kill us.”

Talon recorded the outing’s first goal; she did so in the ninth minute of play, punching the ball past Portland keeper Caroline Lerch on a cross by fellow Eagle Emma Yale.

The scoring crawled to a halt for a long while after that: Not for another 25 minutes or so – until 6:40 remained on the board – did either side find the back of the net again. When that happened, it was Portland. In fact, Portland notched two goals in rapid fire, the second when the board read 5:20.

Annika More earned both points for the Bulldogs, the first from roughly 10 yards out, top-right, and the second on a header following a corner kick by teammate Toni Stevenson. Windham then trailed 2-1 deep into the second half – until the 76th minute, to be exact.

Finally, with 4:24 standing between the Eagles and defeat, Talon struck again, this time assisted by Julia McKenna. 2-2.

“Sarah had a great game,” Lebel said. “She has a good nose for the ball, and she has this athleticism – and she has this desire to put away that I can’t teach kids. She just wants to win. I love her energy, and she’s determined.”

Sarah Talon chases down a runaway ball. Adam Birt / Lakes Region Weekly

Two OTs followed, during neither of which could either Portland or Windham dig up a sudden-death gamewinner. The contest ended in a stalemate.

“Midfield, Abby Thornton, the two freshmen, Liz Talbot: They’re working super hard,” Lebel said, asked who played well. “They’re freshmen. They had to fill some really big shoes and they’re doing a great job. I also thought Riley Beem over here on the left-mid, she worked really well Julia McKenna up top.”

The result slid Windham to 1-0-1 on the autumn; the Eagles bested South Portland 3-0 in their season-opener. The team traveled to Sanford (1-2) on Tuesday the 17th, winning 3-0; they visit Massabesic on Thursday the 19th.

Julia McKenna takes a touch for Windham. Adam Birt / Lakes Region Weekly

Eagle Emily Magoon races a Bulldogs opponent to the ball. Adam Birt / Lakes Region Weekly

Julia McKenna tussles with a Portlander. Adam Birt / Lakes Region Weekly

Sarah Talon (right) celebrates with teammate Julia McKenna following Talon’s second goal vs. the Bulldogs. Adam Birt / Lakes Region Weekly

Chloe Desmond heads away an airball. Adam Birt / Lakes Region Weekly

Emma Baker fires forward. Adam Birt / Lakes Region Weekly

Sarah Talon vies with a Bulldog for possession of an airborne ball. Adam Birt / Lakes Region Weekly

Emma Baker shovels the ball in a teammate’s direction. Adam Birt / Lakes Region Weekly

Eagles Riley Beem (1) and Riley Silvia (23) sandwich Bulldog Annika More on a header attempt. More’s shot would find the back of the net. Adam Birt / Lakes Region Weekly

Kayla Flanders lays into a ball near the sideline. Adam Birt / Lakes Region Weekly

Emma Yale assisted Sarah Talon with a cross on Talon’s first goal. Adam Birt / Lakes Region Weekly

Comments are not available on this story.