Scarborough senior goalie Kathleen Murphy is congratulated by her teammates as the scoreboard tells the story after the Red Storm’s 11-3 Class A South quarterfinal round playoff win over Gorham Wednesday. Hoffer photos.

BOX SCORE

Scarborough 11 Gorham 3

G- 0 3- 3
S- 7 4- 11

First half
19:56 S Bilodeau (unassisted)
18:08 S Sellinger (Spooner)
17:09 S Bilodeau (Stolz)
16:02 S Sellinger (McFadden)
13:03 S Bilodeau (Conley)
6:52 S Sellinger (unassisted)
4:40 S Bilodeau (Donovan)

Second half
20:53 S Stolz (free position)
16:51 G Forgues (unassisted)
15:47 G Light (Chasse)
10:26 S Grondin (unassisted)
5:08 S Sellinger (unassisted)
2:42 G Chasse (unassisted)
1:06 S Sellinger (Stolz)

Goals:
G- Chasse, Forgues, Light 1
S- Sellinger 5, Bilodeau 4, Grondin, Stolz 1

Assists:
G- Chasse 1
S- Stolz 2, Conley, Donovan, McFadden, Spooner 1

Draws (Gorham, 9-7)
G- Forgues 9 of 15, Gay 0 of 1
S- Stolz 4 of 11, O’Brien 3 of 3, Bilodeau 0 of 1, Spooner 0 of 1

Ground balls:
G- 34
S- 34

Turnovers:
G- 24
S- 30

Shots:
G- 23
S- 18

Shots on cage:
G-13
S- 14

Saves:
G (Guimond) 3
S (Murphy) 10

SCARBOROUGH—Scarborough’s girls’ lacrosse team has accomplished some great things this season, but no one in a Red Storm uniform Wednesday afternoon had ever participated in a playoff game, so there were bound to be some nerves.

Guess again.

By halftime, second-ranked Scarborough had raced to a seven-goal lead over No. 7 Gorham in a Class A South quarterfinal at the Kippy Mitchell Sports Complex and while there were some anxious moments in the second half, the Red Storm were never seriously threatened.

Four goals from junior Natalie Bilodeau and three more from classmate Maya Sellinger produced a 7-0 lead at the half.

Junior Darby Stolz added another early in the second half before the Rams finally came to life, getting goals from senior Gracie Forgues and junior Alexandra Light.

Gorham tried to creep even closer, but Scarborough senior goalie Kathleen Murphy came up huge, as she has all season, making seven second half saves.

Sophomore Stella Grondin and Sellinger then added goals for the Red Storm and after sophomore Miranda Chasse scored one final goal for the Rams, Sellinger scored one final time to bring the curtain down on an 11-3 victory.

Sellinger scored five goals, Bilodeau added four and Murphy finished with 10 saves as Scarborough won a playoff game for the first time in six years, improved to 10-3, ended the Rams’ season at 5-9 and in the process, advanced to host No. 3 Massabesic (8-5) in the semifinals Friday at a time to be announced.

“I don’t have words for what it means for us to win a playoff game,” said Red Storm coach Emily Field. “The girls have faced every challenge this year. They weren’t nervous going into a playoff game. In the pregame, I told them not to worry about the outcome and if we took care of the little stuff, the right outcome would happen.”

It’s been awhile

Heading into play Wednesday, Scarborough hadn’t made the playoffs since 2017 and hadn’t gotten past the quarterfinals since 2015.

This year’s Red Storm team is something special, however, winning nine of 12 games, with two of the losses coming by just one goal, including one in overtime.

Scarborough started the year with four straight victories, over Gorham (14-5), Thornton Academy (12-7), Cheverus (14-4) and Bonny Eagle (14-3). Then, after dropping a close 8-7 home decision to Massabesic, Scarborough bounced back and knocked off visiting Portland (13-4) and Westbrook (16-0). After a 7-1 setback at Greely, the Red Storm defeated visiting South Portland (15-5), host Windham (12-9) and host Berwick Academy (16-13) before falling in a thrilling regular season finale, 11-10, in overtime, at two-time reigning Class A champion Falmouth.

Gorham, meanwhile, started with losses to Falmouth (14-3) and Scarborough (14-5), then edged Cheverus, 9-8, and beat Bonny Eagle, 15-9, After a 6-5 overtime loss to Waynflete, the Rams beat South Portland, 11-5, then lost to Massabesic (13-3), Thornton Academy (14-9), Biddeford (13-10), Greely (11-3) and Kennebunk (16-3). Gorham got back in the win column by downing South Portland a second time in the regular season finale, 15-3.

Monday, a the preliminary round playoff game, the Rams advanced by defeating 10th-ranked Sanford, 12-2.

In the teams’ regular season encounter, April 23, the Red Storm got four goals from sophomore Molly Henderson.

Scarborough had beaten Gorham in both prior playoff meetings, with a 16-5 victory in the 2015 Western A quarterfinals the most recent.

Wednesday, on a another sweltering day, 83-degrees at the opening draw, the Red Storm did it again.

Scarborough needed over five minutes to break the ice, but did so with 19:56 left in the first half, when Bilodeau caught the ball, made a move around a defender, then shot past Rams junior goalie Brooke Guimond for a 1-0 lead.

That opened the floodgates, as senior Paige Spooner set up Sellinger for her first goal with 18:08 remaining and Bilodeau scored for the second time, from Stolz, 59 seconds later to make it 3-0.

Gorham coach Meredith Bickford called timeout, but it didn’t stem the tide.

Gorham junior Allie Myles is boxed in by Scarborough juniors Natalie Bilodeau (23) and Maya Sellinger.

The Red Storm made it 4-0 with 16:02 remaining in the half, as Sellinger finished a feed from senior Sawyer McFadden.

“There were definitely nerves, but we’ve taken what we’ve been practicing and put it out here,” Sellinger said. “It was exciting to play in a playoff game. I just got open and tried to be confident. We’ve worked a lot in practice on attack. We clicked.”

With 13:03 to go, Bilodeau scored her third goal, from senior Kayla Conley.

The Rams tried to answer, but Chasse sent a free position shot high and freshman Kaitlyn Nichols missed just wide.

Then, with 6:52 on the clock, Sellinger forced a turnover, grabbed the ball and raced in and scored for a 6-0 lead.

With 4:40 to play before halftime, Scarborough scored its final goal of the half, as junior Meagan Donovan set up Bilodeau.

In the final minute, Murphy first made her presence felt by denying freshman Ellie Gay on a free position shot, then robbing Gay again to send the Red Storm to the half with a 7-0 advantage.

“I’m thrilled with our first half,” said Field. “We played great as a team. We’ve talked about trusting each other and the process. We came together and it all worked out.”

After Murphy opened the second half by making a nice save on a shot from Nichols, Stolz converted a free position with 20:53 to go and it appeared Scarborough was bound for a 10-goal mercy rule running clock, but Gorham had other ideas.

After Murphy robbed Chasse, Forgues got to a loose ball in front and flicked it past Murphy with 16:51 remaining, getting the Rams on the board.

Then, with 15:47 to go, in transition, Chasse set up Light for a goal which cut the deficit to 8-2.

Gorham had chances to get closer, but Murphy saved a pair of shots from Nichols and another from junior Kate Dupuis.

“It’s more fun when I see a lot of shots,” Murphy said. “We played incredible defense.”

With 10:26 on the clock, Grondin restored order for the hosts, scoring unassisted to make it 9-2.

Then, after Murphy saved a free position shot from junior Allie Myles, Henderson hit the post, but with 5:08 to go, Sellinger scored for the fourth time, whacking the ball out of the air past Guimond and into the net.

“I’m not surprised in Maya,” Field said. “She’s amazing on attack. I’m excited for Maya. I know she’s had that in her all year. It was fun to watch.”

The Rams got their final goal with 2:42 left, as Chasse scored unassisted, but with 1:06 remaining, Stolz set up Sellinger for the coup de grace and the Red Storm got to celebrate their 11-3 victory.

“It’s incredible,” said Murphy. “I hadn’t played in a playoff game. It’s great to win our first game. Gorham stepped it up. They’re fast and athletic. We beat them at the beginning of the season, but it didn’t mean anything. We knew we had to take it seriously and have fun.”

“Gorham’s a fast and athletic team and they kept us on our toes,” Field said.

Sellinger powered the offense with five goals and got plenty of help from Bilodeau, who added four. Grondin and Stolz also tickled the twine.

Stolz had two assists, while Conley, Donovan, McFadden and Spooner each added one.

It didn’t look like Murphy would be a big factor when Scarborough raced to the big halftime lead, but she wound up making 10 critical saves.

“I just try to relax before each game because I get super-anxious,” Murphy said. “My teammates are always there for me and knowing that is enough.”

“Kathleen is so awesome,” Sellinger said. “We’re very lucky to have her.”

“Our defense played well and Kathleen, of course, came up huge,” Field added.

Sellinger and junior defender Ashley Farrington shared team-high ground ball honors with five apiece.

The Red Storm had a 14-13 edge in shots on goal and overcame 30 turnovers.

For Gorham, Chasse, Forgues and Light scored the goals and Chasse had an assist.

Guimond made three saves.

Forgues helped the Rams win 9 of 16 draws.

Myles had a game-high 11 ground balls, while senior Katie Kutzer scooped up six.

Gorham had a 23-18 shots advantage and turned the ball over 24 times.

Redemption?

Scarborough will get a chance to avenge one of its losses Friday when Massabesic pays a visit. In the first game, Murphy made 17 saves, but three goals from Noelle Desvergnes gave the Mustangs the narrow one-goal victory.

The teams have squared off five previous times in the playoffs with the Mustangs holding a 3-2 edge. The most recent encounter came in the 2017 Class A South quarterfinals (a 13-3 Massabesic victory).

Suffice it to say that the Red Storm are eager to play another game.

Especially the one they have in store.

“We want a second crack at (Massabesic),” said Murphy. “It will definitely be a good game.”

“It’s really exciting,” Sellinger said. “To come out and be 10-3 going into second round of playoffs is great. It will be really fun to play Massabesic. We’ll put our all out there. It’s a great group of girls. We’re having a lot of fun and we want to keep it going.”

“I’m excited to see Massabesic again,” Field added. “I think we had them last time. It came down to the last minute. It’ll be exciting. We have to rest up and work on our love of the game. We’re ready.”

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

Comments are not available on this story.