CUMBERLAND—Yarmouth’s boys’ soccer team loves playing on its home turf, but there’s one place the Clippers have even more success.

Glen A. Hutchins Field, the home of the Greely Rangers.

Friday evening, Yarmouth paid a visit to the Rangers and for the 14th straight season, bussed home without having suffered a loss.

After a near-miss early in the game, senior Sutter Augur gave his team the lead with a goal in the 29th minute.

Then, with 29 minutes to go in the second half, off a long throw-in from junior Liam Hickey, senior Isaac Grondin banged home a loose ball in front to double the lead.

The Clippers’ defense, which stymied Greely all night, slammed the door from there and Yarmouth closed out its 2-0 victory.

The Clippers extended their unbeaten streak against the Rangers to 19 games, improved to 12-0-1 and in the process, dropped Greely to 9-3-1.

“The kids come in here knowing how much it means and sometimes playing in a place like this sharpens your focus,” said longtime Yarmouth coach Mike Hagerty, who won his 309th game with the program. “The kids get up for Greely. This is probably our biggest rival and they’re really good.”

Home away from home

While Yarmouth has left no doubt it’s the clear favorite in Class B South yet again, Greely has suggested that it might be the squad best equipped to end the Clippers’ reign.

The Rangers started by rolling at Poland (10-0). After a 2-1 loss at Freeport, Greely held off visiting Cape Elizabeth, 2-1, and after falling at Yarmouth (2-1), handled visiting Lake Region (8-1) and Sacopee Valley (6-0), beat host Gray-New Gloucester (5-2) and after settling for a 0-0 home tie against Waynflete, the Rangers beat visiting York (3-0), host Fryeburg Academy (2-1), host Cape Elizabeth (3-1) and visiting Freeport (2-0).

Yarmouth started with a 2-0 win at Cape Elizabeth. After a 4-0 home victory over Freeport, the Clippers downed host York (4-0), visiting Greely (2-1), host North Yarmouth Academy (5-1) and visiting Poland (6-0). After settling for a scoreless draw at Freeport, Yarmouth bounced back with an 8-0 win at Wells, then downed visiting Gray-New Gloucester (7-1) and blanked visiting Cape Elizabeth (2-0), host Fryeburg Academy (5-0) and visiting York (6-0).

In the teams’ first meeting, Sept. 14, junior Tommy Bennert gave Greely an early lead, but Yarmouth rallied behind goals from juniors Stevie Walsh and Truman Peters.

That win improved the Clippers’ record to 17-0-1 in the past 18 games in the series (see below, for previous results).

Friday, on a 61-degree evening, in front of a good-sized crowd,  the Rangers sought their first win over Yarmouth since Sept. 9, 2014 (1-0 at Yarmouth) and their first over the Clippers on their home turf since Oct. 10, 2007 (1-0), but Yarmouth had the better of the play most of the way and prevailed yet again.

Greely senior Caleb Knox plays the ball as Yarmouth junior Owen Redfield gives chase and senior Steven Fulton defends during the Clippers’ 2-0 win Friday night. Hoffer photo.

In the eighth minute, Greely had the first good chance, as senior Caleb Knox sent a promising cross to senior Isaac Dunn, but Yarmouth senior goalkeeper Cole Snyder got there first.

The Clippers transitioned to offense and put the first shot on frame, but sophomore Adam McLaughlin was denied by Rangers senior goalkeeper Luca Duina.

Yarmouth senior captain Steven Fulton then had a couple chances, but missed wide both times, the second with Duina out of the goal.

With 15:17 to go in the first half, Augur had a great look at the goal, again with Duina out of the play, but he sent his shot wide.

Augur wouldn’t miss the next time.

With 11:39 remaining before halftime, McLaughlin sent the ball into Augur, who had just enough room to flick the ball past Duina and into the net for a 1-0 lead.

“It’s pretty easy when you have Adam McLaughlin sending you balls like he does,’ Augur said. “He’s really phenomenal in the midfield. He played a great ball over the top. It came right to my foot and I just tapped it in. That was great for my mentality to see that go in.”

“Some kids, after a miss like that, lose confidence, but (Sutter) ramped it up another notch and I’m really proud of him,” Hagerty said. “Sutter showed great growth. I tell the kids that professionals miss easier shots than that and don’t worry about that, focus on the next play. That’s leadership. Sutter might not be a captain, but he acts like a captain all the time. His effort is contagious. He was our most improved player last year and he’s become a two-footed player. He plays two positions for us, is a target on long throws and does a nice job affecting the game however he can.”

Late in the half, Duina denied a bid from sophomore Will Caruso and Knox twice missed the mark to keep the visitors ahead by one at the break.

The Clippers didn’t rest on their laurels and added to their lead in the second half.

First, Duina made a save on an Augur header and a free kick by Greely junior Ethan Njitoh landed in the box, but was deflected out for a corner kick which didn’t result in a shot on frame.

With 29:01 remaining, Hickey, whose throws are as deadly as corner kicks, landed in the box and he ball ricocheted off multiple players from both teams before Grondin managed to get a body part on it and send it in for a 2-0 advantage.

“The next goal’s always the most important one,” said Grondin. “We kept pushing and wanted to win the half. It was great to get that goal. Liam’s throws all night were perfect. I was just hanging out in the box. I think maybe six players combined from each team hit it before I got a knee on it. It was a crazy bounce in the box. It just fell to me and I got it in.”

“Isaac got rewarded,” Hagerty said. “It’s fun to work on those scrum balls offensively. I don’t want to say that goal was lucky, but it was fortunate and gritty. We don’t score a lot of gritty goals. That was just great.”

Greely hoped to answer, but its chances were few and far between.

With 12:55 on the clock, senior Owen Kany served a long free kick into the box where Yarmouth sophomore back Jonny Fulton was waiting to head the ball out of harm’s way.

Three minutes later, Kany had another free kick, which came to Snyder, who made the stop.

Then, with 5:25 remaining, the Rangers took a corner kick, but it was cleared and the Clippers ran out the clock from there and celebrated their 2-0 victory.

“Greely’s a great team and it’s always a great atmosphere,” Grondin said. “Both sides bring the intensity. It’s an amazing environment. You should get up for every game, but it’s always special when we play Greely. They’re a great team and they work hard and we had to match that.”

“We work hard,” Augur said. “We take the mentality that it’s not really the surface we play on, it’s more the people who play on it. We’re a really resilient team. We’re willing to go anywhere and play anyone and just try to compete.”

“I wasn’t sure how we’d play on grass and the first 10 minutes were kind of choppy, but I think we started to play to feet and tried to get our combinations going and we played really well,” Hagerty added. “We played 20 kids tonight. We had fresh legs in the second half. I’m really proud of our consistency, patience and effort tonight. The kids did everything we asked them do, as far taking balls out of the air, winning second balls, trying to find feet, trying to be consistent on how we attack. As well as our backs played and as well as our goalie played, I thought it was our midfield that defensively forced turnovers and played nicely on their forwards and kept possession of the ball.”

Yarmouth finished with an 8-2 edge in shots on frame, got two saves from Snyder and had a 4-2 advantage in corner kicks.

Greely got six saves from Duina.

“It’s the first time we gave up the first goal and the first time we’ve been down by two goals all year,” said longtime Rangers coach Mike Andreasen. “They were better than us tonight. Yarmouth’s not a glitzy team, they’re just solid. They know how to pass, they’re technical. Everything is one, two, three touches, not trying to beat someone with the ball. Their second defending is great. The guy behind the ball is ready to defend. If you beat the first kid, the second kid is there. It’s hard because they’re so good. If we’re not on our game and we weren’t tonight, a team like that will beat us. They were just better than us. We didn’t have many chances.

“You want to treat it like it’s not a monkey on your back, but Yarmouth’s just a good team. They might lose seniors, but they just regenerate. It’s just their system. ”

One tough test left

Greely (currently ranked third in the Class B South Heal Points standings) has one final regular season game, Tuesday, at York.

“We’d like to get another shot at (Yarmouth), but we have things we need to work on,” Andreasen said. “I think we’re one of the top teams behind them, maybe the top team behind them, but we’re still behind them. We have to put Yarmouth out of our minds for now. There’s a lot of soccer to come. We can still win 10 games this year and coming in to the year, that might be a little more than I’d thought.”

Yarmouth will be first in the region for the fourth straight postseason and eighth time in the past 11 years a tournament was held.

The Clippers’ goal is simple.

Another state title.

And it isn’t wise to bet against them.

“It starts with work ethic,” Grondin said. “We have to keep working hard in practice and in games and if we do that, the rest will fall into place. There are a lot of great teams, but we’re trying to do something special here.”

“I wouldn’t say a Gold Ball has been our goal since day one,” Augur said. “I’d say our goal has been to play our best and I feel if we do that through our last regular season game and through the playoffs, it’s definitely a possibility.”

“Tonight solidified the one spot,” Hagerty added. “We’ll celebrate our seniors again Tuesday. The seniors want to go out on a high note.”

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

Recent Greely-Yarmouth results

@ Yarmouth 4 Greely 0
Yarmouth 3 @ Greely 2

@ Yarmouth 4 Greely 0
@ Greely 1 Yarmouth 1 (tie)
Class B South Final
Yarmouth 5 Greely 1

Yarmouth 4 @ Greely 1
@ Yarmouth 2 Greely 1

Yarmouth 5 @ Greely 3
@ Yarmouth 5 Greely 0

Yarmouth 4 @ Greely 1
@ Yarmouth 2 Greely 1
Class B South semifinals
@ Yarmouth 3 Greely 2 (OT)

Yarmouth 2 @ Greely 0
@ Yarmouth 1 Greely 1 (tie)
Class B South semifinals
@ Yarmouth 3 Greely 1

Greely 1 @ Yarmouth 0
Yarmouth 1 @ Greely 0
Class B South Final
@ Yarmouth 4 Greely 2

@ Greely 2 Yarmouth 2 (tie)
@ Yarmouth 4 Greely 1
Western B Final
Greely 2 @ Yarmouth 1

Yarmouth 1 @ Greely 0
Greely 2 @ Yarmouth 0

@ Yarmouth 2 Greely 0
Yarmouth 2 @ Greely 1

Yarmouth 4 @ Greely 3
@ Yarmouth 3 Greely 0

@ Yarmouth 3 Greely 0
Yarmouth 4 @ Greely 0

Yarmouth 1 @ Greely 0
@ Yarmouth 2 Greely 1

@ Yarmouth 1 Greely 0
@ Greely 1 Yarmouth 0

@ Yarmouth 0 Greely 0 (tie)
@ Greely 2 Yarmouth 1 (2 OT)

@ Greely 1 Yarmouth 1 (tie)
Greely 1 @ Yarmouth 0

Yarmouth 3 @ Greely 1
Greely 1 @ Yarmouth 0

@ Yarmouth 1 Greely 1 (tie)
@ Greely 3 Yarmouth 3 (tie)

Greely 2 @ Yarmouth 0
@ Greely 2 Yarmouth 1

@ Greely 2 Yarmouth 0
Greely 2 @ Yarmouth 1


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