Greely’s boys’ lacrosse team races on to the field after defeating North Yarmouth Academy, 8-7, in double-overtime Saturday. Hoffer photos

BOX SCORE

Greely 8 North Yarmouth Academy 7 (2 OT)

NYA- 2 2 2 1 0 0- 7
G- 1 3 2 1 0 1- 8

First quarter
7:48 NYA Hamblett (Alberding)
5:12 NYA Waterman (C. Rohde)
4:07 G Leggat-Barr (unassisted)

Second quarter
10:23 NYA Thomas (Warde)
9:25 G Kennedy (unassisted)
6:38 G Downing (Leggat-Barr)
3:53 NYA Warde (Waterman)
2:06 G Cornwall (unassisted)

Third quarter
7:37 G Leggat-Barr (Kenney)
5:22 NYA S. Rohde (unassisted)
5:01 G Kenney (Downing)
4:32 NYA Warde (unassisted) (MAN-UP)

Fourth quarter
7:14 G P. Sasseville (unassisted)
3:10 NYA Waterman (Tourigny)

First overtime
No scoring

Second overtime
19.4 G Cornwall (unassisted)

Goals:
NYA- Warde, Waterman 2, Hamblett, S. Rohde, Thomas 1
G- Cornwall, Leggat-Barr 2, Downing, Kennedy, Kenney, P. Sasseville 1

Assists:
NYA- Alberding, C. Rohde, Warde, Waterman 1
G- Downing, Kenney, Leggat-Barr 1

Faceoffs (Greely, 18-2)
NYA- Hamblett 1 of 15, Tourigny 1 of 5
G- C. Sasseville 18 of 19, Turner 0 of 1

Ground balls:
NYA- 37
G- 55

Turnovers:
NYA- 31
G- 41

Shots:
NYA- 34
G- 29

Shots on cage
NYA- 18
G-17

Saves:
NYA (Curtis) 9
G (Osgood) 11

CUMBERLAND—Greely’s boys’ lacrosse team has come a long way in a short time, but it took a long time to survive visiting North Yarmouth Academy in a marathon contest Saturday at Glenn Hutchins Field.

The Rangers, coming off a huge win Thursday at reigning Class B champion Yarmouth, and the reigning Class C champion Panthers, produced a contest that was tied five teams and needed far more than 48 minutes to produce a victor.

NYA started fast, as it got first quarter goals from senior Chris Hamblett and junior Caleb Waterman, but Greely awakened from a slow start to pull within 2-1 on a goal from senior Elias Leggat-Barr.

In the second period, the Panthers again went up by two, as sophomore Wyatt Thomas scored early, but the Rangers drew even behind goals from sophomore Matt Kennedy and junior Shaun Downing. NYA them took the lead for the final time when sophomore Brayden Warde scored man-up, but senior Chase Cornwall (remember that name) answered for Greely and the contest was deadlocked, 4-4, at halftime.

There was no separation in the third quarter either, as after Leggat-Barr put the Rangers on top for the first time, sophomore Seamus Rohde scored after a turnover for the Panthers and after senior D.J. Kenney gave Greely the lead again, Warde answered man-up and heading to the fourth period, the game remained tied, 6-6.

With 7:14 to play, sophomore Parker Sasseville put the Rangers on top once more, but with 3:10 on the clock, Waterman tied the score again and after neither team could put the ball in the net the rest of regulation, the contest went to overtime.

The first four-minute, “sudden-victory” session didn’t produce resolution, so it was on to a second OT, where with just 19.4 seconds to go, Cornwall stepped up and played the hero, scoring to give Greely a hard-fought and dramatic 8-7 victory.

The Rangers got goals from six different players and saw junior Charter Sasseville dominate faceoffs as they won their third game in a row, improved to 3-2 and in the process, dropped NYA to 4-2.

“We expected it to be tough and we were ready,” Cornwall said. “We had fun and gave it our all and eventually took the win.”

On the rise

Greely had to shake off its tough start to the season, after losses at home to Yarmouth (8-5) and at Cape Elizabeth (17-2). The Rangers got their first victory Wednesday, 14-4, at Freeport, then earned a huge boost of confidence the following day with a 7-5 victory at Yarmouth.

NYA, which celebrated a championship in 2019, welcomed back Peter Gerrity as coach this spring and opened with shutout victories over visiting Fryeburg Academy (14-0) and host Traip Academy (16-0). After a hard-fought 8-7 home loss to Yarmouth, the Panthers rolled at St. Dom’s (14-2) and at home over Mt. Ararat Wednesday (17-4).

In the teams’ last meeting, in 2019, Greely won at NYA, 11-4.

Saturday, on a cloudy, windy 52-degree day, the Panthers hoped to beat the Rangers for the first time since April 27, 2011 (a 10-9, triple-OT home victory), but Greely had the final hurrah.

The Rangers nearly opened the scoring four minutes in, but Kenney’s shot hit the post.

NYA then struck first with 7:48 to go, as in transition, senior Pat Alberding got the ball to Hamblett, who bounced a shot past Greely junior goalie Spencer Osgood for a 1-0 lead.

With 5:12 on the clock, again in transition, junior Chas Rohde fed Waterman to double the Panthers’ advantage.

Greely finally got on the board with 4:07 left in the frame, as Leggat-Barr bounced a shot past NYA sophomore goalie Jonathan Curtis.

After Curtis made a late save on a shot from sophomore Thomas Bennert, the Panthers took a 2-1 lead to the second quarter.

There, NYA again went up by two when Warde found Thomas wide open in front and Thomas finished with 10:23 to go in the first half for a 3-1 advantage.

The Rangers responded, as Kennedy bounced a shot pat Curtis with 9:25 left and with 6:38 on the clock, after a Panthers’ turnover, Leggat-Barr got the ball to Downing, who made a great fake before burying his shot to make the score, 3-3.

NYA then went man-up and with 3:53 remaining before halftime, Waterman set up Warde to put the Panthers back in the lead.

Greely would again draw even, however, as with 2:06 to go, Cornwall finished unassisted.

After Curtis made a late save on Kenney the game went to the half tied at 4-4.

Greely junior Charter Sasseville prepares to win one of his 18 faceoffs as North Yarmouth Academy senior Chris Hamblett tries in vain to stop him.

Charter Sasseville won nine of 10 first half faceoff opportunities, but the Rangers turned the ball over a whopping 19 times and Curtis made four saves to keep the game even.

The third period was more of the same.

With 7:37 to go, Greely took the lead for the first time, as Kenney set up Leggat-Barr.

After Osgood denied Chas Rohde and Hamblett, Seamus Rohde intercepted a clearing pass, raced in and scored to make the score 5-5 with 5:22 on the clock.

It then took the Rangers 21 seconds to go back ahead, as Downing found Kenney and Kenney finished for a 6-5 lead.

It didn’t last, as 11 seconds after going man-up, NYA got an unassisted goal from Warde and the score was tied once more.

Osgood then stood on his head to prevent the Panthers from retaking the lead, denying Seamus Rohde after a turnover, stopping a shot from Chas Rohde, then robbing Warde to keep the score 6-6 heading for the final 12 minutes.

But far more than 12 more minutes would be needed.

With 7:14 to go in regulation, Greely turned a turnover into a goal, as Parker Sasseville pounced on an errant pass and raced in and beat Curtis unassisted for a 7-6 advantage.

Senior Ben Hirsch had a chance to double the Rangers’ lead, but his shot hit the post.

Osgood then stood tall, denying both Waterman and Chas Rohde, but with 3:10 left, junior James Tourigny got the ball to Waterman and Waterman finished to make it 7-7.

Greely then went man-up and had a chance to retake the lead, but Curtis denied Cornwall.

After the teams traded turnovers, NYA had one final look as time wound down, but Thomas was just off the mark and the game would go to overtime.

In Maine high school boys’ lacrosse, teams play a four-minute overtime with the first team scoring declared the winner, but neither squad could tickle the twine.

Charter Sasseville won yet another faceoff to start OT, then the Rangers turned the ball over.

The Panthers had a look to win it with 2:45 on the clock, but Hamblett missed wide.

Greely gave the ball back, but with 1:25 remaining, the Rangers went man-up.

Greely couldn’t manage a shot, however, and with 18.1 seconds showing, Chas Rohde looked to win it, but his shot was just wide and the game would go to a second OT.

Where, finally, the Rangers ended it.

Charter Sasseville again won the opening faceoff and this time, Greely managed a shot, but Bennert’s bid was saved by Curtis.

With 2:58 remaining, NYA got its break, going man-up, but the Panthers turned the ball over.

“Our man-up has been doing pretty well,” Gerrity said. “Once you get to the end of a game this long, guys get tired. It’s hard to play as sharp as they did earlier.”

Greely senior D.J. Kenney makes a move to the goal during the second overtime.

After Leggat-Barr had a shot blocked, Curtis denied Kenney.

Then, after one final NYA turnover, the Rangers ended the nearly 56-minute-long contest.

The ball would come up top to Cornwall, who made a move on a defender, wound up and shot.

Initially, it appeared that Curtis had made the save, but the ball got past him, bounced off his leg and went into the net.

“I knew it was crucial to get a goal,” Cornwall said. “I knew the time was running low. I thought I’d use my size to my advantage. I went in like I would dodge and got some space and I let it rip. I knew if I shot from behind someone, the goalie would have a harder time saving it. I tried to keep my man in front of me. It went in the right direction. All I saw was my (defender’s) face looking at me. I didn’t really see (the ball), but one of my teammates said it went in initially, came back out and rolled back in. It counted.”

After nearly two hours of real time, Greely got to celebrate its 8-7 victory.

“It felt really good to win,” Cornwall said. “We came into the game knowing (NYA) had a close game with Yarmouth and we beat Yarmouth in a close game. Our team has a lot of experience in close games. Unfortunately, we hadn’t gotten on the right side of it, so it feels good to put so much work into something and have it go your way.”

“I knew the offense would get one,” Charter Sasseville said. “They were struggling, but they kept fighting.”

“Part of it was remaining calm, but the main thing for us was to keep working hard,” Rangers coach Michael Storey added. “NYA’s a very tough team to outwork. They kept grinding. All credit to them. They gave us everything we could handle and more. Some days the ball bounces your way. I’ve certainly had them not bounce my way.”

The Rangers got two goals apiece from Cornwall and Leggat-Barr, while Downing, Kennedy, Kenney and Parker Sasseville each tickled the twine once.

Downing, Kenney and Leggat-Barr all had assists.

Charter Sasseville was sensational on faceoffs, winning 18 of his 19 opportunities.

“I just go out and I expect the other dude to be the best faceoff guy in the state every single time I go out there, so I try to be ready every day and have my hands be as quick as possible,” Sasseville said. “I try to scoop (the ball) forward and find my teammates in optimal positions.”

“Charter’s doing really well at the faceoff circle,” Storey said. “He’s gotten very locked in. He’s focused on what he’s doing.”

Charter Sasseville also collected a game-high 13 ground balls, as Greely enjoyed a 55-37 advantage in that category.

Osgood came up huge with 11 saves.

“Spencer is very consistent in the net,” Storey said. “Our defense is getting their slides going and offensively, we’re still struggling a bit, but we have guys who are willing to put the effort out there.”

The Rangers some how, some way, overcame 41 turnovers.

“It’s been two ugly grind-out wins in the past couple days, but the guys have worked really hard to improve,” Storey said. “We beat two quality teams. I’m happy with where we’ve come from a month-and-a-half ago.”

NYA got two goals apiece from Warde and Waterman and one each from Hamblett, Seamus Rohde and Thomas.

Alberding, Chas Rohde, Warde and Waterman had one assist apiece.

Seamus Rohde had a team-high eight ground balls.

Curtis made nine saves.

The Panthers finished with a 34-29 shots advantage (18-17 on frame) and committed 31 turnovers.

“The message we’re trying to get these guys to understand is that we’re as good as the top Class B teams,” Gerrity said. “We showed that today and we hoped to get a bounce go our way at the end. Turnovers didn’t help and their faceoff guy was excellent. We got guys stuck on the field because they’d win the faceoff and they were pretty good as possessing the ball too, so we had to wait until they turned it over.”

Halfway there

NYA is back in action Wednesday when Gray-New Gloucester pays a visit.

“Things are going well,” Gerrity said. “A game like this is huge for us to show we can compete. We’ll learn a lot and hopefully we can take it to some Class C teams. We need to stay healthy. We have just one game next week and that will help us regroup.”

Greely looks to extend its win streak to four games Monday at Gray-New Gloucester. The Rangers welcome Cape Elizabeth Wednesday in their next big test.

“We came out without a ton of varsity experience and we took a lot of JV guys from two years ago,” Charter Sasseville said. “We started rough this year, but we’re starting to put things together on offense and defense. Every facet of the game is improving every single day for us and you look for that in a young team.”

“All I know is that the seniors, including myself, all we want is to get (back to states, after losing in 2018 and 2019),” Cornwall said. “We’ll give our all until we do. We hope we can come together as a team and get a championship after not getting an opportunity last year with so much talent on our team.”

“We have a long ways to go, but we’re building,” Storey added. “We focus on the next thing and the next game. It’s nice to see the growth of this team. I hope we can grow even more the next month.”

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

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