SCARBOROUGH — With her team clinging to a one-goal lead, the seconds couldn’t count down fast enough for Ava Lomax.

“Those were the slowest five minutes ever,” said Lomax, a freshman goalkeeper for Thornton Academy. “It’s a little scary when it’s that close.”

But the Trojans got to celebrate. Fifth-ranked Thornton Academy got a second-half goal from Hadley Stoddard and stellar play from Lomax to defeat fourth-ranked Scarborough 2-1 in a Class A South girls’ soccer quarterfinal at the Mitchell Sports Complex on Thursday.

It was Thornton’s first win at Scarborough and lifted the Trojans (12-4) into the regional semifinals against top-ranked Windham. Scarborough, which defeated Thornton 1-0 in the regular season, finished 13-2-1.

“I could not be more proud of this team and the way they have grown this season,” said Thornton Academy Coach Natalie Sharland. “They’ve come together, they’ve supported one another. And we truly played as a team tonight. We had a game plan coming into the game and they executed it perfectly.”

The game was tied 1-1 at the half – Jessica Dow scoring for the Trojans on a perfect feed from Quincy Thibault with 24:11 left in the first half, Scarborough tying it on Ali Mokriski’s goal less than four minutes later – and the Red Storm came out swarming in the second half.


Scarborough had three chances in the first 90 seconds, one going off the crossbar, but could not score. Then the Trojans struck off a free kick from about 30 yards out on the right.

Emily Coleman took it, the ball lofted over the Scarborough defenders into the goal area. There, Stoddard, a sophomore midfielder, gathered it in after a couple of bounces and found herself all alone in front. Stoddard nudged the ball forward then kicked it into the net and the Trojans led 2-1 with 35:12 left.

“Usually I’m not in that far,” said Stoddard. “But I thought this could be our last game and I needed to do everything I could to help. I thought there was someone on me and was waiting for a push in the back. It didn’t happen and … you know.”

Senior back Mia-Claire Kezal said that goal gave the Trojans a huge lift. “That shifted the game for us,” she said. “We were like, ‘We’re not here to lose this.’ ”

Scarborough still went hard at Lomax after, but couldn’t convert.

Lomax made the save of the night with 13:35 remaining when she dived to her right to knock down a point-blank bid by Mokriski.


Asked what she was thinking when she saw Mokriski with the ball, Lomax said, “Oh crap? I guess. It just happens. You just dive and it happens.”

Scarborough Coach Mike Farley credited Thornton with a strong game.

“They did well,” he said. “They made the most of the couple of opportunities they got. They put pressure on our backs and we just couldn’t couldn’t find that last play.

“We came out well in the second but when we didn’t score we kind of let off and they got a goal. And that was the difference.”

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