YARMOUTH — Cold weather and pelting rain did little to cool off a Cape Elizabeth girls’ lacrosse team that is heating up at the right time.

Sadie Smith and Claire McDonald scored three goals apiece to lead a balanced offense, and the Capers topped North Yarmouth Academy 14-7 in dreary conditions Thursday afternoon.

Cape Elizabeth led 10-3 at halftime and opened up a 10-goal lead before NYA, led by four goals from Maggie Holt, narrowed the gap in the closing minutes. The Capers have won three out of their last four games after dropping three straight.

“(We’ve) been working really hard this year on a solid seven-man defense,” said Cape Coach Alex Spark, whose team also got two goals apiece from Annaliese Rudberg, Kaitlyn Woods and Ellie Gagne. “Help slides, a lot of communication, heavy crashes when the ball gets inside the 8-meter (arc). I think we did a good job of that today, helping each other out left and right.”

NYA, which led the Class C Heal point standings going into the game, dropped to 5-4 with the loss to the Class A Capers (4-4). The Panthers cut the gap to 6-3 on a Vivian Tran free position with 7:51 left in the first half, but then surrendered the next eight goals.

“It was just miscommunications on our team, and not really waiting for the right opportunity on attack,” said NYA Coach Molly Moss-Stokes, whose team also got goals from Emilia McKenney and Emma Sharp. “With the home stretch, it’s always nice to play a team like that and get tested. Obviously, we fell short in the middle of the game, but it’s stuff we have to work on moving forward.”


After an opening goal by Sharp, Cape Elizabeth got the next three on tallies by Woods, Smith and Gagne. Holt won the ensuing draw and scored to narrow the NYA deficit to one, but Woods scored off of an assist from McDonald to make it 4-2.

Holt was carded moments later, and the Capers struck twice on the advantage, with goals by Smith and Rudberg. Tran’s goal gave NYA life, but a goal by Rudberg, two from McDonald and another from Smith had Cape Elizabeth comfortably in front at the break.

“That’s something we pride ourselves on,” McDonald said. “We have confidence in all our subs and all our players. People got assists and goals from all around the board. That makes us happy, that’s what we like to see.”

McDonald, Phoebe Altenburg, Gagne and Laura Clark scored in the second half for the Capers, who attacked NYA throughout the game with quick, coordinated passes that set up scorers with good looks.

“We’ve been working with our plays, trusting and making quick passes to the cutters,” Smith said. “With backers, especially, it’s harder to do the one (versus) one. Those plays have really helped us.”

The Capers face another test Friday against Greely (7-2).

“A win like this is good for us,” Spark said. “To end the game and have my entire team and sideline, everyone together feeling good and ready to move forward, is a great feeling going into a big game on Friday.”

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