KENNEBUNK — Of the 22 schools that play Class A girls’ lacrosse in Maine, only two woke up Thursday morning with undefeated records.

Now, there is only one.

Defending state champion Kennebunk withstood early pressure from Massabesic and then took advantage of a raft of yellow cards against the frustrated Mustangs to run away with a 15-2 victory Thursday night.

Kennebunk (6-0), ranked No. 1 in the Varsity Maine poll, scored the game’s final nine goals – seven with a one-player advantage and two with a two-player advantage.

“We knew they were going to come out hard,” said Lily Hansen, Kennebunk’s senior goalie. “They wanted to beat us. We wanted to beat them. I’m really proud of us for staying composed and playing our game and not letting them get in our heads.”

Massabesic (5-1) won the first three draws, but each time an experienced Rams defense remained stout and Hansen came up with a save to set a tone that continued throughout the contest.

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Ivy Armentrout scored twice in the early going for Kennebunk and Ruby Sliwkowski added a goal from free position (the first of seven such scores set up by Massabesic fouls) to make it 3-0 before the game was six minutes old.

“In that early going, we couldn’t get things going,” said Massabesic Coach Jason Tremblay, whose team is ranked No. 2 in the Varsity Maine poll. “We went down with a couple good looks. But their goalie is good. She made a few good saves.”

Hansen finished with 10 saves, six in the first half. This marked only her second start of the season, because a concussion kept her sidelined through the first three games. Like last year, she alternates in the cage with junior Lizzie Hayes.

Sophomore Keara Battagliese (from Sydney Dumas) and Sliwkowski (free position) each converted to give Kennebunk a 5-0 lead midway through the first half and prompt Tremblay to call a timeout. It was 6-0 when Massabesic finally broke through, with consecutive goals by senior Micaela Jacobs.

In the final two minutes before intermission, however, the Mustangs earned their third and fourth yellow cards for dangerously physical play. It was 7-2 at the half, and Massabesic earned another yellow and a red (automatic ejection plus a one-game suspension) as frustration mounted. A Kennebunk defender earned the game’s final yellow card.

“It was definitely the most aggressive game we’ve played,” Battagliese said. “With both of us being undefeated teams, we were coming in with high expectations. … They tried to knock us down, but I don’t think we went down.”

Battagliese and Sliwkowski each finished with three goals. Sophia Notine had two. Dumas, Grace Archer and Mara Muse also scored for Kennebunk.

But it was the defense – Notine, Sliwkowski, Willa-Maya Dowling, Calia Keenan, Matilda Bordas, Miranda Godek and Becky Taggart along with Hansen – that kept the Rams’ perfect record intact.

“They were better on the draw than we were,” said Kennebunk Coach Annie Barker, referring to Massabesic’s 14-5 advantage in the circle. “Luckily, we have such a good, strong defense that we can let them get the ball, and we can probably get it back.”


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