SCARBOROUGH—By program standards, Scarborough’s boys are in the midst of a long, long title drought.

The 2022 Red Storm are poised to do something about it.

Monday night at the Kippy Mitchell Sports Complex, Scarborough continued to stake its claim as the best team in Class A South when it hosted Falmouth.

After several near-misses in the first half, the Red Storm found the mark in the second half, as junior Kilson Joao scored seven minutes in, then senior Will Fallona put it away with a goal with 15:41 to go and that was more than enough for the Red Storm, who didn’t surrender a shot until the final seconds, to go on to a 2-0 victory.

Scarborough, which last won a Class A state title in 2013 and last played in a state game seven years ago, improved to 7-0 this fall and in the process, dropped the Navigators to 4-3.

“We all love Scarborough and at the end of the day, you want to win for your hometown, your friends, everybody and that’s what we all want to do,” said Fallona.

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On a mission

Scarborough has been consistently excellent since opening the season with a hard-fought 1-0 home victory over Portland. The Red Storm then defeated host Westbrook (8-0), visiting Windham (2-0), host Sanford (8-3) in longtime coach Mark Diaz’s 300th career win, visiting Kennebunk (2-1) and host Biddeford (8-0).

As for Falmouth, its year began promisingly with victories at Bonny Eagle (4-0), at home over Noble (8-0), at Sanford (4-2) and at home over Massabesic (11-0), then the Navigators lost twice last week, 2-0 at home to Gorham and 3-0 at Thornton Academy.

Last year, Falmouth won a thriller at Scarborough, 1-0, on a late goal from Mason Farr.

Monday, on a very pleasant 65 degree evening, for most of the game anyway, the Red Storm turned the tables and earned their first win over the Navigators since Falmouth joined the Southwestern Maine Activities Association in 2017, their first since a 3-0 win in the 2015 Western A semifinals and their first in the regular season over the Navigators this century.

Scarborough junior Dillon MacLeod battles Falmouth junior Christian Grimes for possession as Red Storm junior Kilson Joao looks on during Scarborough’s 2-0 victory Monday. Hoffer photos.

Scarborough nearly struck in the second minute, when senior Jack Moreau had a great look, but Falmouth freshman goalkeeper Caden Berry dove and made the save.

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In the third minute, Joao got into the box, but Berry broke up his rush in the last second.

In the fifth minute, Fallona collided with two defenders in the box and went to the ground and while the Red Storm wanted a penalty kick, no foul was called.

In the eighth minute, Berry dove to rob senior Ashton Blanchette, then he denied a rebound bid from junior Dillon MacLeod as well.

With 25:17 to go in the first half, freshman Sandro Kaumba stole the ball and had a great chance to put Scarborough on top, but he shot wide.

Later in the half, Berry saved a header from senior Cooper Johnson, Blanchette missed high, Joao missed just wide, Berry made another terrific save on a Moreau shot in transition and Berry saved a free kick from MacLeod to send the game to the break still scoreless.

The Red Storm had a 6-0 advantage in shots on frame and took four corner kicks to the Navigators’ one, but had nothing to show for it.

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Falmouth junior Michael Christman heads the ball into the night.

Scarborough then finally broke through in the second half.

After Joao missed just wide and Moreau shot high, the Red Storm went on top, 1-0, with 33:28 remaining, as Blanchette passed wide to Moreau who crossed the ball in front, where Joao was waiting to pound it home.

“We were certainly frustrated, but we stayed together,” Fallona said. “We wanted to get balls across from the outside and we sent it to each other and just wanted to get it on net and crash the rebound. Kilson gets the team energized. Everyone was buzzing after that.”

“I thought we put good pressure on (Falmouth) in the first half and held the ball well, but their keeper made a couple nice saves,” said Diaz. “We felt like if we kept playing the same way, we’d get some opportunities.”

Midway through the second half, the Navigators generated a chance, as senior Mason Quiet set up junior Elijah St. Louis, but he shot wide.

Then, the skies opened and after a rush from St. Louis was broke up in the box, Scarborough went back on the attack and doubled its lead.

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With 15:41 to play, off a throw, the ball came to Fallona, who eluded a defender, the ripped a low shot inside the near post that a diving Berry couldn’t stop.

“It’s a blast to play in the rain,” Fallona said. “It was a beautiful heads up play on the throw from Max. I just turned and shot. We had guys crashing the rebound no matter what, but I got it.”

Falmouth couldn’t generate a shot on frame until 25 seconds remained, when sophomore Griffin Parr sent a long free kick in that was saved by Scarborough senior goalkeeper Nick Ouellette.

That made it official and the Red Storm were able to celebrate their 2-0 victory.

Scarborough players rush goalkeeper Nick Ouellette at the final horn.

“It’s a big win for us,” said Diaz. “Falmouth’s a good team and I’m very happy with the effort tonight.  I’m just happy to get out of here with a win. Defensively, we played very well and did what we talked about. The key for us is how we defend.”

The Red Storm finished with a 10-1 advantage in shots on goal, got one save from Ouellette and had a 6-2 edge in corner kicks.

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The Navigators got eight saves from Berry.

“He’s only a freshman and he got some good experience tonight,” said longtime Falmouth coach Dave Halligan. “You look at our roster and we’re young. We’ll learn from this. We’re better off playing teams like this. We’re better off playing the top teams than some other teams.”

Increased intensity

Falmouth turns right around and faces another tough test Tuesday at Windham. The Navigators come home Friday to face Cheverus.

“We have a strong freshman and sophomore class and the seniors have done a great job leading,” Halligan said. “Even when we’re not successful, we’ll still fight and be in games. We’re getting experience.”

Scarborough is idle until Friday, when it hopes to stay perfect at Thornton Academy. Next Monday brings another key test for the Red Storm, when reigning Class A champion Marshwood pays a visit.

“We just have to stay together,” said Fallona. “The offense and defense have to work together to come out on top.”

“The teams coming up will be good tests for us and this is the time of year where you want that,” Diaz said. “We’re just trying to get better. We just need to be consistent. When you get in the tournament, you have to get a few bounces. We’re not going to make excuses and when we’re ready to make that step, we well. This team is going to take it one game at a time.”

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

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