The fun continued for local teams last week and as summer gives way to fall, it’s clear that the best is yet to come.

Here’s a glimpse:

Football

Freeport’s Nick White gains yardage against Wells early in the Falcons’ 35-28 setback Saturday night. Michael Hoffer / For The Forecaster.

Freeport’s football team took part in a game for the ages Saturday night, when it hosted perennial powerhouse Wells.

Freeport, a Class D contender, punching up in class on this evening, drew first blood when Aidan Heath connected with Nick White for a 23-yard touchdown pass and a quick 6-0 lead. But Wells used its huge size advantage to counter, pulling even, 6-6, after one quarter. In the second period, it appeared that the Warriors were on the brink of taking over, as they took a 14-6 lead, but with just seconds remaining before the break, Falcons standout Jordan Knighton electrified the huge crowd by racing 80-yards for a score and a two-point White conversion rush produced an improbable 14-14 tie.

Wells again threatened to pull away in the third quarter, going up 28-14, but again, Freeport refused to buckle and late in the frame, Knighton scored on a 2-yard run to cut the Warriors’ lead to just seven heading for the fourth period. There, Wells scored again to restore a two-touchdown lead, but the Falcons rose off the deck once more, getting a 10-yard touchdown run from Cooper DeLois. When Freeport managed, for one of the few times on the night, to get a defensive stop, it had an opportunity to tie or win late and the Falcons drove all the way to the Warriors’ 7 with just seconds remaining, but Cinderella would not be fitted with a glass slipper on this evening, as Wells’ defense came up huge with the game on the line and the Warriors escaped with a palpitating 35-28 victory.

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Wells improved to 3-0 on the season and in the process, dropped valiant Freeport to 2-1, even if you might have thought otherwise after the final horn.

“It was a fun game, wasn’t it?” said Falcons coach Paul St. Pierre. “Sometimes when you win, you lose and sometimes when you lose, you really win. We fought hard all game.”

Freeport gained 380 yards of offense, turned the ball over twice and was penalized five times for 37 yards.

Knighton excelled with 139 yards on 17 carries and a pair of touchdowns. He also caught two passes for 17 yards.

“Jordan Knighton is one of the best players, if not the best player in Class D and he showed it,” said St. Pierre. “That was all character, heart, determination and passion and he brings it every week.”

Heath completed 13-of-22 passes for 153 yards with a touchdown and two interceptions. He also ran four times for 24 yards.

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White had four catches for 59 yards and a score and ran five times for 41 yards.

Max Peters had five catches for 45 yards and Teddy Peters caught two balls for 32 yards.

DeLois finished with 26 yards and a touchdown on three carries.

“I give credit to Wells,” said St. Pierre. “They made the plays when they needed to, but this is kind of game we need. I told the guys you can bend, but don’t break. It’s not the size of the dog in the fight, it’s the size of the fight in the dog. I don’t care about height or weight, we have experience, we have technique and we have heart.

“Our goal is to 3-0 in November. In order to do that, you need to build character and get stronger every week. These are the types of the games that will make us stronger. Right now, these kids believe they can go toe-to-toe with anybody and that’s what I want from them.

“Wells hasn’t stepped down, we have stepped up. That’s the difference. Our players and coaches have stepped it up and we’ll get better, I’ll assure you that.”

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Freeport hopes to bounce back when it welcomes 3-0 Medomak Valley Saturday at 5 p.m.

“The way we played (tonight) is how we can build toward our ultimate goal and that’s winning in November,” said St. Pierre. “We’ll build on what we have and clean up and continue to get better. These guys are ready to go next week and we sent a message to everyone tonight that we’re going to play right to the end and go toe-to-toe with everybody.”

Yarmouth was the lone local team to win last weekend, improving to 3-0 with a 36-14 home victory over Gray-New Gloucester. Michael McGonagle had a 46-yard touchdown run and caught a 33-yard TD pass from Sam Bradford to produce a 14-6 lead after one quarter. Spencer LaBrecque added a 5-yard run and Bradford hit Kai Sullivan for the two-point conversion to make it 22-6 at halftime. McGonagle scored on a 9-yard run early in the second half, but the Patriots rallied within 28-14 heading to the fourth quarter. There, McGonagle’s fourth score, a 65-yard run, put it away and Bradford hit Sullivan again for the two-point conversion. McGonagle finished with  265 yards and three TDs on 23 carries. He had four catches for 76 yards and a score and also had 54 return yards. The Clippers host 1-1 Mt. Desert Island Friday.

Falmouth suffered its first loss in three outings, 34-16, at Cape Elizabeth. Peyton Mitchell completed 13-of-27 passes for 100 yards and a touchdown. Finn Caxton-Smith rushed nine times for 57 yards and had three receptions for 25 yards and a TD. Defensively, Indi Backman and Will Gale both registered nine tackles. The Navigators welcome 1-2 Messalonskee Friday.

Greely dropped to 0-3 with a 38-12 loss at Lake Region. The Rangers have a bye this weekend, then go to 2-1 Mt. Ararat Sept. 30.

Boys’ soccer

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Greely’s Eric Asherman plays the ball while Yarmouth’s Justin Dawes defends early in the Clippers’ 2-1 victory last week. Michael Hoffer / For The Forecaster.

Yarmouth’s two-time reigning Class B champion boys’ soccer squad made it five straight victories and improved to 5-0-1 after winning last week at rival Greely (2-1) and at Poland (6-0). Stevie Walsh scored both goals against the Rangers and Liam Hickey (who had an assist) and Sam Lowenstein helped anchor a strong defensive effort as the Clippers improved to 19-0-1 in the last 20 meetings against Greely.

“Greely’s a great team,” said Walsh. “It’s a tough game every year. We just had to dig deep and find it within us to pull it out in the end.”

“As a defense, it’s about trying to take away shots and finding feet in the midfield because we have talented players there who can distribute the ball,” Lowenstein said. “Liam’s a big help. He’s been there before and helps calm me down. We communicate well with each other. I like playing with him. It’s nice for me to have the opportunity to step and I hope to make the most of it.”

“I thought after the first half, if we had played that well in the second half, it would have been comfortable, but credit to Greely, they stepped it up and we didn’t,” added longtime Clippers coach Mike Hagerty. “If we can put two halves together and play like we did the first half, we’ll be very good.”

In the win over the Knights, Matt Gautreau had two goals, while Walsh, Luis Cardozo, Adam McLaughlin and Truman Peters added one apiece. Yarmouth hosts Fryeburg Academy Thursday.

“We’ve got a great group of guys who are all determined to go far and make a run,” Walsh said. “We’re just looking to get better every day. We’re going deep in our bench every day. It’s a group effort.”

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Greely was 2-2-1 after a 2-1 home loss to Yarmouth and a 4-0 win at Lake Region. Against the Clippers, the Rangers got a penalty kick goal from Ethan Njitoh, but couldn’t dig out of a 2-0 hole.

“We just didn’t play as urgent as I hoped we would the last 10 minutes,” said longtime Greely coach Mike Andreasen. “That’s their trademark. When Yarmouth’s losing a game late, they throw their kitchen sink at you and I’m not sure we even turned the water on. I thought we had a good chance to win this game, so it’s frustrating.”

In the victory, Njitoh, Tommy Bennert, Owen Piesik and Nick Theodores all had goals. The Rangers welcomed Gray-New Gloucester Tuesday, visit Sacopee Valley Friday and play at three-time reigning Class C champion Waynflete Tuesday of next week (see pressherald.com/forecaster/forecaster-sports/ for game story).

Freeport got its first victory last week, 4-1, over visiting Lake Region, then fell to 1-3-1 with a 3-0 loss at Cape Elizabeth. The Falcons were at Fryeburg Academy Tuesday, then go to Gray-New Gloucester Saturday.

Falmouth took a 4-0 record into Tuesday night’s home showdown versus Gorham. Last week, the Navigators blanked visiting Massabesic, 11-0, as Finn Cameron and Michael Christman both scored three goals and Veroone Meduri added a pair. Falmouth is at Thornton Academy Friday, plays at Scarborough in a pivotal showdown Monday (see pressherald.com/forecaster/forecaster-sports/ for game story) and visits Windham next Tuesday.

Reigning Class D South champion North Yarmouth Academy beat visiting St. Dom’s, 1-0, then fell to 2-4 after a 4-2 home loss to Traip Academy. Against the Rangers, Theo Fahlgren and Cooper St. Hilaire scored second half goals, but it wasn’t enough. Goalkeeper Tanner Anctil made eight saves.

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“Traip played well,” said Panthers first-year coach Branden Noltkamper. “Hats off to them. They were organized, they had a plan and it worked for them. They had more chances. We’ll move on and learn from this and grow and get better.”

NYA is idle until Saturday when it hosts Waynflete and reaches the midway point of its regular season. Next Tuesday, Lake Region pays a visit.

“We haven’t been able to train, so having a week off will be nice,” said Noltkamper. “We’re more than capable of competing with anyone in the state and we just have to get over the hump. The goal is to get some (Heal Points).”

Girls’ soccer

North Yarmouth Academy’s Vy Tran fights for possession during the Panthers’ 5-1 win at St. Dom’s last week. RAM Sport Photography

On the girls’ side, three-time defending Class D state champion NYA continues to roll, improving to 4-0 after downing host St. Dom’s (5-1) and Traip Academy (2-0) last week. In the win over the Saints, Angel Huntsman had two goals and Anna Belleau and Hayden Ella Giguere and Hayden Wienckowski all added one. Against the Rangers, Huntsman scored both goals. The Panthers face their biggest test to date when they welcome Class B South power Yarmouth Thursday afternoon (see pressherald.com/forecaster/forecaster-sports/ for game story). NYA then hosts undefeated Waynflete Friday.

Falmouth took its 3-1 record to Gorham for a playoff rematch Tuesday, then hosts Thornton Academy Thursday and undefeated Scarborough Saturday.

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Yarmouth extended its win streak to four games and improved to 4-1 after home victories last week over Greely (3-2) and Poland (8-2). Ava Feeley scored all three goals against the Rangers and in the win over the Knights, Feeley had four goals, while Sonja Bell, Annie Hunter, Taylor Oranellas and Aine Powers each added one. The Clippers are at NYA Thursday, go to Fryeburg Academy Friday and visit Lake Region Tuesday of next week.

Greely was 3-2 after a 3-2 loss at Yarmouth and a 3-2 home win over Lake Region. Abby Lennox scored both goals against the Clippers. In the victory, Shaylee O’Grady scored twice and Lennox added a goal. The Rangers were at Gray-New Gloucester Tuesday, host Sacopee Valley Friday and welcome Wells Tuesday of next week.

Freeport earned its first win last week, 2-1, at Lake Region, then fell to 1-4 after a 4-0 loss at three-time reigning Class B champion Cape Elizabeth. Taryn Curry and Kate Tracy scored goals in the victory and goalkeeper Amanda Panciocco made five saves. The Falcons host Fryeburg Academy Wednesday and welcome Gray-New Gloucester Saturday.

Field hockey

Falmouth’s Coco Bruder plays defense during last week’s loss to reigning Class A champion Cheverus. Ben McCanna / Portland Press Herald

Freeport’s field hockey team played host Greely to a 1-1 tie last Friday. The Falcons took an early lead on a goal from freshman Emily Groves, but the Rangers tied it in the second half, when Lia Traficonte scored. Freeport had a goal waved off late in regulation and despite a huge edge in shots on cage and penalty corners, couldn’t muster a victory.

“Unfortunately, we did not play our ‘A’ game,” lamented Falcons coach Marcia Wood. “We had chances. It just wasn’t our day. Greely played great. They were persistent and aggressive and their goalie made a bazillion saves. We can’t play flat and we started to play frantic.”

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Freeport (2-2-1) was home versus Fryeburg Academy Tuesday, then welcomes Poland Friday.

“The girls are getting it,” Wood said. “We have so much potential.”

Greely was 0-4-1 after a 4-0 loss at Cape Elizabeth and a 1-1 home tie against Freeport. Goalie Kate Parkinson made 33 saves against the Capers and stopped 23 shots, including multiple highlight reel saves, in the tie.

“That was so fun,” said Parkinson. “We needed a result like this. This boosts our confidence a lot.”

“Kate has a lot of strength and she might not have played those years with Savanna (Harvey) in, but she watched every second and learned from her,” Rangers coach Burgess LePage said. “She’s so tough and brings a lot of light and fun to the team.”

Greely is at Fryeburg Academy Thursday, then hosts Cape Elizabeth Saturday.

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“We’re learning lessons every game,” said LePage. We’re adjusting and figuring out how to move forward.”

Yarmouth’s Celia Zinman fights for possession during Monday’s loss at Cape Elizabeth. Ben McCanna/ Portland Press Herald

Yarmouth was 2-4 at press time, sandwiching wins over visiting Wells (7-0) and host Poland (2-1, in overtime) around a 2-1 Gray-New Gloucester/NYA last week and falling, 7-1, at Cape Elizabeth Monday. Against the Patriots, Celia Zinman scored the Clippers’ goal. In the OT victory, Sophie Smith played the hero. In the loss to the Capers, Madeline Nieter had the goal. Quincy Schnee made 16 saves.

“We’ve got a lot of good things that are starting to click and connect,” Clippers coach Molly Saunders said. “(There was) a lot of (adapting) for today’s game, but I thought we came out strong.”

Yarmouth goes to York Thursday and welcomes Poland Monday.

Falmouth fell to 2-3 after a 9-0 home loss to reigning Class A champion Cheverus and a 1-0 double-overtime setback at Gorham last week. Against the Stags, the Navigators were down 4-0 after one quarter and couldn’t recover. Goalie Jenna Nunley dazzled with 23 saves.

“Jenna made a lot of saves,” said longtime Navigators coach Robin Haley. “She got hit a lot and took it and did a really good job.

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“(Cheverus is) excellent. They move the ball around very well. They’re 100 percent in synch with each other. They’re a fun team to watch, but not a fun team to play. Despite the score, we’re a better team as a result of playing that game. We played right to the end and didn’t give up and I’m really proud of this group.”

Monday, Falmouth evened its record with a 1-0 home win over Massabesic on a goal from Anna Turgeon. Falmouth visits Noble Wednesday and goes to Thornton Academy Tuesday of next week.

“It’s a long season,” Haley said. “We saw what a very talented team does and that’s what you aspire to. We have players who are hungry. We have some underclassmen who got some valuable minutes and we’re trying to build on this.”

Volleyball

Yarmouth’s three-time reigning Class B volleyball state champion improved to 5-0 and extended their win streak (which dates to 2019) to 38 matches after blanking host Gray-New Gloucester and visiting South Portland (25-7, 27-25, 25-11) last week. Against the Patriots, Norah Lushman had 19 service points, including five aces, Dorcas Bolese added nine kills and Brianna Torres had seven digs. In the win over the Red Riots, Bolese had nine kills and two blocks. The Clippers were at Cheverus Tuesday and host reigning Class A champion Scarborough Thursday (see pressherald.com/forecaster/forecaster-sports/ for game story).

Falmouth was 3-1 after a straight-set (25-11, 25-15, 25-23) victory at Greely. Victoria Abbott had 16 digs, five kills and three aces, Olivia Dickhaut added 13 digs, Hannah Roche had 13 assists and Jinny Marcoccio contributed nine assists. The Navigators were at Biddeford Tuesday, host Marshwood Thursday and welcome Cape Elizabeth Tuesday of next week.

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Greely was 3-3 after a 3-0 (11-25, 15-25, 23-25) home loss to Falmouth, a four-set home win over Gray-New Gloucester and Monday’s 3-0 win at Lake Region. Against the Navigators, Lily Dube had 19 digs and Sophia Ippolito added 11 assists. The Rangers visit Brunswick/Mt. Ararat Wednesday.

NYA was 1-4 following a four-set (16-25, 22-25, 25-16, 12-25) loss at Lewiston and a three-set home loss to Westbrook. The Panthers host Lewiston Friday.

Cross country

On the trails, local teams converged in Gorham Saturday for the Southern Maine Classic.

Freeport’s boys came in third (Portland was the top team), Greely placed sixth, Yarmouth was 10th, Falmouth 13th, Maine Coast Waldorf 23rd and NYA 25th. Individually, Freeport’s Henry Horne was the top finisher with a time of 15 minutes, 26.09 seconds. Falmouth’s Miles Woodbury came in 12th (16:54.32). The Rangers were led by Hayden MacArthur (13th, 16:56.52). The Clippers’ top finisher was Stuart Baybutt (39th, 17:44.12). MCW was led by freshman Soren Stark-Chessa (94th, 19:08.98). The fastest Panther was Chris Noreika (133rd, 20:54.82).

In the girls’ meet, won by Bonny Eagle, Greely was fourth, Freeport fifth, Falmouth sixth, Yarmouth seventh and Maine Coast Waldorf 14th.  Individually, Yarmouth’s Madeleine Jones placed 11th (20:01.90). The Rangers were led by freshman Rowan Barry (12th, 20:06.43). MCW’s Rahel Delaney came in 14th (20:26.45). The Navigators were paced by Fiona Hanrahan (15th, 20:31.5). The Falcons top finisher was Caroline Carter (20th, 20:56.97). NYA didn’t score as a team, but Cass MacCarthy had the 37th-best individual time (21:44.67).

Golf

On the links, reigning Class A champion Falmouth was 4-2 after a 9-4 win over South Portland and an 11-2 loss to Scarborough last week.

Greely improved to 4-1 after beating Gorham (11-2) and Bonny Eagle (13-0) last week.

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

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