Richmond’s Andrew Vachon (20), here battling a Traip Academy defender during the regular season, leads the Bobcats into the Class D South Boys Soccer Regional Final against North Yarmouth Academy on Wednesday at Lewiston High School. (Bob Conn / The Times Record)

BRUNSWICK — It has been a grind.

The regular season for high school sports ended a couple of weeks ago, leading us into the postseason.

There have been playoff upsets (Mt. Blue over previously-unbeaten Cony in a football stunner on Friday), near shockers (Lewiston putting away Messalonskee in overtime in boys soccer on Saturday) and teams that the “experts” said would be there from the beginning.

Regional finals in boys and girls soccer are slated to take place today and Wednesday, with state championship plaques scheduled to be handed out on Saturday at Hampden Academy (Classes A and D) and Falmouth High School (Classes B and C).

Today at Bath’s McMann Field (4 p.m.), second-seeded Brunswick takes on top-seeded and two-time defending State Class A champion Lewiston in the Class A North regional final.

The teams met once during the regular season, with the Blue Devils doubling up the Dragons, 4-2, at Lewiston on Sept. 27. The setback was the lone loss for Brunswick (14-1-1), while Lewiston (14-1-1) fell to Mt. Ararat, 1-0, near the end of the season for its only loss. Brunswick defeated the Eagles in both meetings this year — 2-0 finals on Sept. 10 and Oct. 22.

This one looks to be a battle that can truly go a lot of ways. It may be a high-scoring affair, just like the first meeting, or both teams may just turn up the defense and see who can strike for the “golden” goal, like the Dragons did in a 1-0 overtime semifinal victory over Camden Hills on Saturday.

Lewiston has captured three of the past four State Class A titles, and still has the talent to win another championship.

Class D South

There are two more area teams that will play in regional finals this week, and they both reside at one school.

The Richmond boys and girls will both take on defending State Class D champion (boys and girls) North Yarmouth Academy Wednesday on the Lewiston High School turf in what will surely be two Class D South battles.

In the boys contest (4 p.m. start), this is the third meeting between the top-seeded Bobcats (12-2-1)

Brunswick defender Milan VanLeer (18) chases a loose ball against Hampden Academy at Brunswick in September. The Dragons face two-time defending State Class A champion Lewiston today at 4 p.m. in the Class A North Boys Soccer Regional Final at Bath. (Bob Conn / The Times Record)

and No. 7 NYA, which knocked off third-seeded Pine Tree Academy in the semifinals, 5-0, on Friday. Richmond defeated the Panthers, 2-0, on Sept. 18, and fell at home to NYA, 1-0, on Oct. 1.

Richmond is riding a five-game winning streak since falling to Western Maine Conference power Traip Academy back on Oct. 10. The Bobcats edged rival Buckfield, 4-3, in overtime in the Class D South quarterfinals, then rolled to a 5-0 win over Temple Academy in the semifinals.

The Richmond girls face an uphill battle against the top-seeded Panthers (13-2-1) on Wednesday at 6:30 p.m. The Bobcats, seeded second and coming off a 3-1 victory over former East-West Conference rival Buckfield in Friday’s Class D South semifinal at Bath, lost two of its three games this season. The Panthers captured a hard-fought 1-0 win at Richmond on Sept. 18, then rolled past the Bobcats, 5-0, in the rematch Oct. 1 in Yarmouth.

Richmond seemed to right its ship after dropping a 1-0 decision at St. Dominic’s Academy back on Oct. 3. Since then, the Bobcats, who are 12-3, have won seven straight contests while outscoring their opponents 39-4.

Meanwhile, NYA slipped past Greenville, 2-1, in the semifinals.


Four area teams are set for action this week, with Brunswick, Freeport and Lisbon/St. Dom’s in semifinal action,

while Mt. Ararat heads to Maranacook for the Large-School Eight-Man Championship on Friday night in Readfield.

Starting in Brunswick, the Dragons are the team to beat in Class B North, especially after Cony was stunned by No. 7 Mt. Blue in the quarterfinals on Friday.

Brunswick hosts resurgent Skowhegan, the No. 5 seed, Friday night at 7 p.m. The top-seeded Dragons defeated No. 8 Brewer, 47-0, this past Friday in the quarterfinals, and will try to duplicate their season-opening 48-7 rout of Skowhegan in the semifinals.

However, Skowhegan has won four straight, including Friday night’s 27-0 blanking at No. 4 Windham.

“It will be a challenge, and we will work hard this week to prepare. We will be ready,” said Brunswick coach Dan Cooper moments after the Dragons gave him his 100th coaching victory on Friday.

Freeport captured the State Class E title game last year.

This year, the Falcons played in Class C South, and though the expectations might have been a bit high as numbers grew, it was still going to be a step up, or two, in competition.

Those expectations have only grown more after Friday night’s 42-41 overtime quarterfinal win over No. 4 Cape Elizabeth, giving Freeport (7-1) a bit of revenge for its only loss this season (21-20 on Oct. 4).

Now, fifth-seeded Freeport travels to Turner on Friday to take on undefeated and top-ranked Leavitt (7 p.m.) in the semifinals.

Leavitt defeated Cape Elizabeth, 30-12, during the regular season, so from the outside looking in, it will take a monumental 48 — or more — minutes of quality effort from Paul St. Pierre’s Falcons to get another big road win.

But, don’t count Freeport out.

Also Friday night, Mt. Ararat, coming off a 52-20 victory over Yarmouth on Saturday at the Topsham Fairgrounds, heads to top-seeded Maranacook (9-0) for a 7 p.m. matchup, with the winner punching its ticket to the first-ever Maine State Eight-Man Football Championship Nov. 16 at Fitzpatrick Stadium in Portland.

The Eagles, seeded second, enter the contest with a 7-2 record, with both of those losses coming at the hands of the Black Bears — 38-18 in Topsham on Sept. 14 and 34-24 on Oct. 18 in Readfield.

“We will hit it hard in practice, come up with a gameplan, and head to Readfield to take on a very good team,” said Mt. Ararat coach Frank True.

And on Saturday, the Lisbon/St. Dom’s football team, seeded No. 2 in Class D South, hosts rival and third-seeded Oak Hill at 12:30 p.m. in the semifinals.

The teams met on Oct. 26 at Wales, with Lisbon’s 16-13 victory giving the Greyhounds (5-3) the No. 2 seed and a much-needed off week, while the Raiders had to host Madison/Carrabec in a home quarterfinal.

Saturday will be a rematch of last year’s quarterfinal. On a muddy, rain-swamped Thompson Field, the Raiders, seeded seventh, stunned the No. 2 Greyhounds, 6-0 in overtime.

Lisbon enters the contest on a two-game winning streak, with its losses coming this season against talented Fryeburg Academy (14-6), Winthrop/Monmouth (49-14) and York (42-33).

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