A week chock full of playoff action just came and went, and while there have been some tough losses, one defending champion still remains alive.

Here’s a refresher:

Boys’ lacrosse

Cape Elizabeth’s Tiernan Lathrop is defended by Scarborough’s Jayden Flaker during the Capers’ semifinal round victory Saturday. Gregory Rec / Portland Press Herald

Cape Elizabeth’s boys’ lacrosse team, the reigning Class A state champion, was preparing to take part in the regional final at press time, hosting Thornton Academy Wednesday night (see theforecaster.net/sports for game story).

The Capers, ranked first in Class A South, dominated No. 8 Sanford (22-5) in the quarterfinals, then dispatched No. 4 Scarborough (12-7) in the semifinals.

The Red Storm had advanced by virtue of a 7-6 overtime win over No. 5 Gorham in the quarterfinals. Scarborough let a late lead slip away, but won it on Jeremiah Park’s goal.

“I saw the goalie (Ian Connors) duck a little bit, and I just fired,” said Park, playing despite a broken left hand. “My hand’s been bugging me a lot, and honestly, that’s a shot that hasn’t gone a whole lot. I was lucky it went in. I’ve been trying to figure it out with only two of my fingers for a while.”


“(Jeremiah’s) a senior captain and he’s lived and died Scarborough lacrosse his entire career,” said Red Storm coach Zach Barrett. “The kid loves the game and I couldn’t keep him off the field.”

In the semifinals, Keegan Lathrop scored five times to lead the Capers past Scarborough, Sam Cochran added three goals and Tiernan Lathrop had four assists.

“I thought our defense played really well,” said Cape Elizabeth coach Ben Raymond.

The Red Storm got three goals apiece from Finn Pedersen and Olin Pedersen but finished the year 10-4.

“Getting down in a hole against Cape is never the plan,” Barrett said. “But being in that position, I was so proud of our guys for continuing to play. There were a couple of times where it felt like we had some momentum, and a couple things didn’t break our way, but we stuck with it the whole game.”

The Capers lost at second-ranked Thornton Academy (13-1), 11-10, in overtime, back on May 20. Cape Elizabeth surrendered the tying goal with a second left, then was stunned in the extra session. The teams split four prior playoff meetings, with the Golden Trojans holding off the Capers, 8-5, in the 2019 Class A South Final in the most recent encounter.


“I’m looking for revenge,” Tiernan Lathrop said. “When I was a freshman, we lost to TA on this field (in the regional final), and we lost to TA this year on their field in a very dramatic finish. We’re going for it.”

If Cape Elizabeth returns to the state final, it will battle either Falmouth (11-3) or Windham (9-5) Saturday at a time to be announced at Fitzpatrick Stadium in Portland.

South Portland, ranked third in Class A South, had no trouble downing No. 6 Bonny Eagle, 25-4, in the quarterfinal round, as Jack Dreifus had six goals and three assists, and Brady Demers added five goals. In Saturday’s semifinals, at No. 2 Thornton Academy, the Red Riots couldn’t dig out of an early 6-1 hole and lost, 13-9, to finish 11-3. Demers had four goals in defeat.


Cape Elizabeth’s Brady Inman throws out a Yarmouth runner during the Capers’ quarterfinal round victory last week. Shawn Patrick Ouellette / Portland Press Herald

South Portland’s baseball team, the reigning Class A state champion, had an exciting playoff run but ultimately fell just short of another trip to the big game.

The Red Riots, ranked third in Class A South, beat No. 14 Deering by mercy rule (11-1, in five innings) in the preliminary round, then ousted No. 6 Westbrook, 5-1, in last Wednesday’s quarterfinals. Andrew Heffernan threw a two-hitter, striking out nine, and Alex Domingos and Nolan Hobbs each had two hits. Saturday, South Portland held off No. 2 Falmouth in a back-and-forth semifinal round thriller, 6-5. Finn O’Connell hit a home run; Hobbs went the distance, scattering 12 hits; and Heffernan added a key two-run single after the go-ahead run scored on an errant pickoff throw.

“It was just awesome to compete and be out there,” Hobbs said. “It got close at the end. I had confidence in myself and in my team that we could go the distance. You just have to stay calm.”


“These are the kinds of games we embrace,” Heffernan said. “This is as good as it gets. They battled back, we battled back. There was never a time in a game that I felt comfortable. We just had to grind it out.”

“We stayed within our approach all day,” O’Connell said. “We know what we can do with the bat. We have confidence in each other and we fed off our energy and stayed confident all game.”

“We don’t make it easy on ourselves,” added South Portland coach Mike Owens. “(Falmouth’s) a good team. We knew they were going to come back. They never give up. They’re very well-coached. You get to this point in the playoffs, you can’t expect it to be easy.”

Tuesday, at St. Joseph’s College in Standish, the Red Riots met their match in top-ranked Thornton Academy, losing, 8-1, to finish 16-4. Nate Rende had an RBI single, but South Portland was doomed by five errors.

“I thought we needed to play a near-perfect game to beat them and we certainly didn’t do that today,” said Red Riots coach Mike Owens.

Scarborough, the No. 4 seed, beat No. 13 Bonny Eagle, 5-1, in the preliminary round, then was stunned by No. 12 Marshwood, 3-2, in the quarterfinals to wind up 13-5. Mason Porter had two hits and drove in a run, as did TJ Liponis.


In Class B South, Cape Elizabeth, the No. 5 seed, blanked No. 12 Wells (5-0) in the preliminary round, then upset No. 4 Yarmouth by the same score in the quarterfinals. In that one, the Capers scored an unearned run in the first inning, made some pivotal defensive plays and even saw Brady Inman’s bunt roll foul, then veer back into fair territory before it hit the third base bag for a timely single. Inman later added a double and Charlie Song tripled him in to ice it. Colin Smith went the distance, allowing just three hits, and Cape Elizabeth finished the game by turning a double play.

“It was perfect,” Inman said. “We were talking about ending it on a double play and we did. I bobbled it a little bit and got nervous, but we got it done.”

“It did seem like the baseball gods were on our side today, and it was due,” Smith said. “We’ve been battling all year. I’m happy it went our way today.”

“It’s a great win,” added Capers coach Glenn Reeves. “We had good pitching, timely hitting, played great defense, and we had some luck.”

Cape Elizabeth then lost, 2-0, at top-ranked Greely in the semifinals to finish 11-8. Curtis Sullivan pitched well, but the Capers managed just two hits.


Tom Griffin started coaching Scarborough’s softball team in 1990. Griffin announced his retirement after last week’s playoff loss to Windham, following 498 victories and eight state championships. File photo

The softball season came to an end for local teams last week.


Additionally, one of the coaching greats in the sport bowed out.

Scarborough, the No. 5 seed in Class A South, blanked No. 12 Cheverus (10-0, in six innings) in the preliminary round, then avenged an earlier loss by knocking off No. 4 Massabesic (10-1) in the quarterfinal round. Saturday, in the semifinals, the Red Storm’s season came to an end at 13-5 with a 6-0 loss at top-ranked Windham. Angelina Pizzella and Alana Sawyer each had a single, but that was it for Scarborough’s offense. Following the loss, longtime coach Tom Griffin confirmed he’s retiring after 498 career victories and eight state championships.

“It was time for me to let go of that stress,” Griffin said. “I love so many parts of this game, but the hard part is making (playing time) decisions. I had to make some tough decisions about playing time today and I don’t like making those. I have to, I’ve done it. But I’ve had a lot of sleepless nights. You take it personal, how successful the kids are.

“We thought from the get-go that we were one of the top four teams. We were down in that eight or nine spot there (in the Heal Points standings) and I kind of challenged them a month or so to step up their game. I’m very proud of the young ladies. It’s a special group.”

South Portland, the No. 10 seed in Class A South, upset No. 7 Noble, 5-4, in the preliminary round, then lost, 5-0, at No. 2 Biddeford, the reigning and eventual repeat regional champion, in the quarterfinals to finish 8-9. The Red Riots managed just one hit in the finale.

“It’s about taking a step forward,” said Bud Voss, South Portland’s first-year coach. “The first time we saw (Biddeford), the second game of the season, they beat us 13-0. Overall, the way the team has progressed from the beginning to now, I couldn’t be more proud.”


Reigning Class B state champion Cape Elizabeth, seeded fifth in Class B South, beat No. 12 Wells (19-2, in five innings) in the preliminary round and blanked No. 4 Leavitt (13-0) in the quarterfinals, then lost, 11-1, at No. 1 York in the semifinals to wind up 13-6. Hannah Mosher had two hits in the setback.

Girls’ lacrosse

Cape Elizabeth’s Claire McDonald tries to score during Saturday’s playoff loss at Kennebunk. Gregory Rec / Portland Press Herald

Cape Elizabeth and Scarborough’s girls’ lacrosse teams each got to the Class A South semifinals before falling short.

The Capers, ranked fifth in their first season since moving up to Class A, handled No. 12 Bonny Eagle, 17-5, in a state preliminary round game, then upset No. 4 Thornton Academy, 15-9, in last Wednesday’s quarterfinals, as Claire McDonald led the way with five goals.

“We’re exactly where we need to be,” McDonald said. “New competition this year has really made us explore our depth of talent. More intensity, I think, has really pressured us to step it up, especially in the second half of our season. I think we showed tonight we have what it takes.”

“(Claire’s) a powerful force on the field, and she wants it so bad for herself and the team,” Cape Elizabeth coach Alex Spark said. “We needed that ball to go in the back of the cage at that point. We had a smart possession, we took time off the clock and we needed to finish it.”

The Capers then lost at top-ranked, reigning state champion Kennebunk, 15-4, in Saturday’s semifinals to finish 8-7. Kaity Woods scored three goals in defeat.


“They shot the ball better than we did,” Spark said. “I think we had more ball possession wins. We came out scrappy, getting our possessions. We had plenty of them. They just shot the ball better than we did.

“Our seasons are always about where we start and where we finish. This group has been on such a steady incline, moving forward. Class A or Class B, whatever class you’re playing in, it’s more about the journey your program takes, and we did exactly what we wanted to do.”

Scarborough, the No. 6 seed in Class A South, downed No. 11 Noble in the preliminary round, 22-7, then, upset No. 3 Marshwood, 12-10, last Wednesday, as Darby Stolz led the way with five goals. The Red Storm’s season ended at 8-7 Saturday after a 12-6 setback at No. 2 Massabesic. Natalie Bilodeau scored three goals and goalie Zoe Hess stopped 15 shots, but it wasn’t enough.


At the New England outdoor track championship meet Saturday in New Britain, Connecticut, Toby Martin of Class A state champion Scarborough placed eighth in the pole vault (13 feet, 3 inches) and Adam Bendetson finished 15th in the 2-mile (9:31.77). Nick Connolly didn’t score in the shot put or discus. South Portland’s Jacob Ramos was third in the 800 (1:53.92), setting a new school record with the sixth-best time in state history. Amir Broadus came in eighth in the shot put (53-9.5). South Portland’s 4×800 relay team (Kyle Hartford, Jack Nickerson, Jack Smart and Brady Guay) placed 21st (8:40.94).

On the girls’ side, Scarborough’s Caroline Fallona finished ninth in the 100 (12.69 seconds). Cape Elizabeth’s Hadley Mahoney was ninth in the mile (5:03.55). Emma Young came in 17th in the 800 (2:21.31). Tori Hews was 20th in the 100 (13.07). The Capers’ 4×100 relay team (Caroline Concannon, Grace Gray, Marcella Hesser and Hews) placed 18th (50.91). The 4×400 relay squad (Maya Nelson, Young, Mahoney and Hews) finished 19th (4:14.75).

Portland Press Herald staff writers Drew Bonifant, Steve Craig and Travis Lazarczyk contributed to this story.

Sports Editor Michael Hoffer can be reached at mhoffer@theforecaster.net. Follow him on Twitter: @foresports.

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