The calendar has flipped and it’s time to start thinking about the best part of the fall sports season.

The playoffs.

While there is still some regular season business to attend to, the first champions will be crowned this weekend in golf and in a matter of a couple weeks, the postseason will be underway in just about every other sport.

Here’s a glimpse at where things stand after another memorable week:


Joe Osei, left, celebrates with teammate Elijah Timlin after Timlin scored on a long touchdown pass during Saturday’s home win over Wells. Shawn Patrick Ouellette / Press Herald

It was a glorious weekend on the gridiron for local squads.


Cheverus, which has returned to 11-man play this fall after capturing the eight-man large school championship in 2021, improved to 4-1, with its fourth consecutive victory, 16-7, over visiting Wells Saturday afternoon. The Warriors drove the field and scored first, but Rilan Smith returned an interception 46 yards for a touchdown.

“I knew (the pass play) was waggle, so I knew someone would be coming across the field, so I just stood there,” Smith said. “I saw the ball coming to me and I just jumped it.”

Smith then added a two-point conversion rush to put the Stags ahead to stay. Cheverus’ defense was stout from there and Elijah Timlin scored on a deflected 65-yard touchdown reception for the other score. Smith added the two-point conversion rush to account for the final score.

“We really plugged in on defense,” said Cheverus senior defensive tackle Sawyer Merrill, who helped seal the game with the Stags’ third quarterback sack. “We were more focused, more physical. After that first drive, we knew what we had to do to win the game.”

“Our kids played really hard today and we made a couple of big plays and stayed within ourselves,” said Cheverus coach Mike Vance. “It was our best performance so far this season on defense. The kids just played real hard.”

The Stags look to keep their good times rolling Saturday at 3-2 Winslow.


Deering snapped a 17-game skid, which dated to 2019, by beating host Brunswick, 24-0, to improve to 1-4 on the year. The Rams go to 3-2 Kennebunk Saturday.

Portland’s Aidan McGowan breaks up a pass during Friday’s win at Biddeford. Derek Davis / Portland Press Herald

Portland snapped a three-game skid and improved to 2-3 on the season after Friday’s 30-12 win at Biddeford. Kennedy Charles stole the show, taking over under center in the “Wildcat” formation and rushing for 238 yards on 28 carries, scoring two touchdowns and passing for another.

“It was new to me, but I take on new challenges every week,” Charles said.

Portland’s starting quarterback, Sam Esposito was lost to injury in week one against Kennebunk, and sophomore Louis Thurston started the next three games. Coach Jason McLeod said the Bulldogs needed a spark.

“It needed to come from a senior, maybe somebody a little more battle-tested,” said McLeod. “Kennedy is one of our captains. He’s a hard-nosed kid. At the end of the day, he’s our best athlete. If we get the ball in his hands, good things will happen.”

Charles opened the scoring by scooping up a teammate’s fumble and racing 46-yards for the touchdown. Reegan Buck added the two-point conversion rush. Charles then added a 5-yard TD run in the second period and just before halftime, he hit Remijo Wani with a 16-yard touchdown pass.


“Put the ball up and give him a chance, and (Wani) will make a play,” Charles said.

Andrew Brewer scored Portland’s other touchdown, on a 2-yard run.

The Bulldogs have a key home showdown Friday versus 2-3 Marshwood, in a rematch of last year’s disappointing regional final loss.

Boys’ soccer

Waynflete’s Nils Burton-Johanson battles for the ball during last week’s home win over Greely. Shawn Patrick Ouellette / Portland Press Herald

Waynflete’s three-time reigning Class C champion boys’ soccer team improved to 8-1 after downing a pair of Class B South contenders last week. Last Tuesday, the Flyers blanked visiting Greely (3-0), then Thursday, they downed visiting Freeport (4-1). Against the Rangers, senior standout Myles Culley scored two highlight reel goals and Andrew Rogers also finished.

“There was a fire inside all of us, “said Culley, playing his first season with the Flyers. “We’re moving the ball well and if we keep our focus, we can be a championship team this year.”


“Myles brings so much to the team,” said Rogers. “It’s hard to explain the difference he makes, but he brings a lot of goals and confidence.”

“Anytime you play a quality program like Greely that’s well-coached and organized and you come out 3-0 to the good, it’s a great day, so it’s a great win,” added longtime Waynflete coach Brandon Salway.

In the win over the Falcons, Culley scored his 23rd and 24th goals of the season (in just nine games) and he assisted on goals from Porter Beaule and Bryan Stark-Chessa. The Flyers were at St. Dom’s Tuesday and go to York Friday.

“We had a phenomenal team last year and debatably, we’re even better this year,” Rogers said. “This team for sure can be a championship team.”

In Class A South, Deering was 8-0-1 after sandwiching a 2-0 home victory over Thornton Academy and a 8-0 victory at Massabesic around a 2-2 home draw versus Cheverus. In the win over the Golden Trojans, Patricio Mowa and Jeannot Ndayishimiye each scored. In the tie, Mowa and Adilson Vidal both had goals. Against the Mustangs, Vidal and Haytham Ramadan both scored three times and Ethan Fisher and Daniel Landry added one apiece. The Rams hosted Gorham in a pivotal battle Tuesday, go to Falmouth Thursday (see for game story) and visit Kennebunk Saturday.

Portland improved to 6-3 after wins at Massabesic (15-0) and Bonny Eagle (3-0). Nicky Paterniti had four goals and Exauce Lenge added a pair against the Mustangs. In the win over the Scots, Ollie Hettenbach and Kosta Nedeljkovic each tickled the twine. The Bulldogs hosted Kennebunk Monday and have a showdown at Gorham Thursday.


Cheverus was 4-3-3 following a 9-2 home win over Massabesic, a 2-2 tie at Deering and a 1-1 tie at Falmouth. Against the Mustangs, James Baur had four goals, while Gustavo Cedillo, Henry Huntley, Lucca Locatelli, Alex Newman and Collin Plalum all tallied one. In the tie versus the Rams, Plalum scored on a penalty kick and Locatelli also had a goal. In the tie against the Navigators, Baur scored the goal and Cedillo made five saves. The Stags host Windham Wednesday.

Girls’ soccer

Cheverus’ Caoilinn Durkin battles for possession during last week’s home loss to Falmouth. Shawn Patrick Ouellette / Portland Press Herald

On the girls’ side, Cheverus saw its win streak hit five games after a 3-1 home victory over Deering last Tuesday. Sophia Monfa had two goals and Jillian Foley also scored. Last Thursday, the Stags fell to 6-2 after a 2-0 home loss to Falmouth. Cheverus had some great chances in the first half, but couldn’t finish and the Navigators scored twice in the game’s final six minutes.

“We’re not satisfied with the result, but we played more like the team we can be,” said Stags coach Craig Roberts. “We had some opportunities and you have to finish. We were just off on far post runs a couple times.”

Cheverus had a showdown at reigning Class A champion Windham Tuesday, welcomes red-hot Marshwood Friday, goes to Massabesic Saturday and visits Sanford Tuesday of next week.

“Today really begins a stretch against more competitive teams that are ahead of us, or even with us in the Heal Points standings,” Roberts said. “To have a playoff-type game under our belt before going into more tough games is going to be very helpful for us.”


Portland improved to 5-4 following a 12-0 home victory over Massabesic, a 2-1 win at South Portland and a 4-0 victory over visiting Bonny Eagle. In the win over the Mustangs, Anneliese Collin and Eliza Stein both had a hat trick, Kate Martell scored twice and Phoebe Knoll, Elizabeth Littell, Alison Mina and Kendall Sniper each added one. Sniper also had four assists. Against the Red Riots, Martell and Stein had the goals. In the victory over the Scots, Collin had two goals and Mina and Jasmine Arweiler added one apiece. Stein finished with a pair of assists. The Bulldogs were at Kennebunk Monday, host Gorham Thursday, then welcome Falmouth Monday of next week.

Deering was 3-5-1 after a 3-1 loss at Cheverus and a 6-1 home victory over Massabesic. In the loss, Elsa Freeman had the goal and Sophie Hill made 16 saves. Against the Mustangs, Freeman put on a tour-de-force with five goals and she set up the sixth with a kick that resulted in an “own goal.” The Rams were at unbeaten Gorham Tuesday, host Falmouth Thursday, go to Thornton Academy Saturday and welcome Westbrook Tuesday of next week.

In Class C South, Waynflete improved to 6-2 after defeating visiting Old Orchard Beach (2-1) and Lake Region (2-0). Against the Seagulls, Iris Stutzman scored the tying goal and Morgan Earls delivered the decisive tally. In the win over the Lakers, Stutzman and Lucy Hart scored the goals. The Flyers were at St. Dom’s Monday and visit Fryeburg Academy Thursday.

Field hockey

Lily Johnson (8) hugs her sister, Lucy Johnson, after one of Lucy Johnson’s four goals during Cheverus’ victory at Biddeford last week.  Derek Davis / Portland Press Herald

Cheverus’ defending Class A field hockey state champion continued to dazzle last Wednesday, winning at Biddeford, 5-0, in a battle of unbeatens, to improve to 9-0 with a goal differential of 79 to 2. After a scoreless first quarter, Cheverus’ offense came to life in the second, as sophomore sensation Lucy Johnson produced the only goal her team would need five minutes in, off a penalty corner. Junior Lily Johnson then one-upped her younger sister with a gorgeous strike off the backhand with just over five minutes to go and the Stags were up, 2-0, at halftime. Cheverus looked to put the game out of reach and quickly did so in the third period, as Lucy Johnson scored unassisted, then rebounded home a shot from Lily Johnson to make it 4-0. Lucy Johnson scored her fourth goal early in the fourth period and the Stags went on to a 5-0 victory.

“I think we do have a similar lineup to last year, but it feels like a new team,” said Lucy Johnson. “We have confidence and communicate and play really well together. It’s very fun.”


“We’ve really gained a lot of confidence,” Lily Johnson said. “We all work super-hard and give all of our effort and we do everything as a team. We love the under the lights games and playing on turf. It’s so fun. Seeing what we practice come to life on the field and our hard work pay off makes us feel accomplished.”

“They’re great players and they’re so unselfish and as a coach, that’s all you can ask for,” added Cheverus coach Theresa Arsenault. “The girls settled right in and came out playing really well and really well together from our defensive end to our offensive end. It never felt like it was a big score. Biddeford kept the pressure on the entire time. If you didn’t look at the scoreboard, you wouldn’t know the score was (5-0). That was awesome because it pushed our girls to play the full 60 minutes.”

The Stags look to extend their three-year win streak to 32 games Wednesday when they welcome Gorham (see for game story). Cheverus is at Massabesic Saturday and hosts Noble Tuesday of next week.

“I think we can’t get ahead of ourselves,” Lucy Johnson said. “We’ll focus on one game at a time and go into games with confidence and stay positive.”

“We just need to continue to work together,” said Lily Johnson. “We’ll stay humble and keep working hard in practice and we won’t look ahead.”

“We’re continuing to focus on small things, like making connections, girls working together, communicating, transitioning as one,” Arsenault added. “If we do that, that will help us power through.”


The Portland/Deering co-op team fell to 0-8 after a 3-0 home loss to Marshwood last week. Emma Walsh made 30 saves. Portland/Deering was at Scarborough Monday, visits Thornton Academy Wednesday, hosts Windham Saturday and welcomes Bonny Eagle Tuesday of next week.


Deering’s volleyball squad was 6-2 following a win last week at Noble in four-games (25-12, 25-14, 23-25, 25-13). The Rams hosted Marshwood Monday, go to Cheverus Thursday and Gorham Saturday, then host reigning Class A champion Scarborough Tuesday of next week.

Cheverus was 5-6 after a four-game (23-25, 25-12, 25-13, 25-20) home victory over Brunswick/Mt. Ararat, a straight-set (19-25, 12-25, 22-25) loss at Gorham and a four-set victory at Sanford. The Stags host Kennebunk Wednesday, welcome Deering Thursday, then end the regular season at home versus Thornton Academy Tuesday of next week.

Portland fell to 2-9 after 3-1 losses at Kennebunk and Windham. The Bulldogs hoped to end a seven-match skid Monday at Lewiston. After hosting Gorham Wednesday, Portland closes the regular season at home versus Marshwood Friday.

Cross country


The Festival of Champions cross country meet was held last weekend in Belfast.

Portland’s boys were second behind Hampden Academy. Nathan Blades was the individual runner-up, posting a time of 15 minutes, 49.07 seconds. Cheverus came in 30th. Ambrose McCullough had the 123rd-best time (18:18.43).

Bonny Eagle won the girls’ competition. Portland was ninth. Ava Chadbourne paced the Bulldogs with a 35th-place finish (20:24.96). Cheverus finished 28th and was led by Annabelle Brooks (15th, 19:28.8).

Waynflete took part in a five-team meet at Lake Region last week. The Flyers girls were second behind the host team. Vivi Jenkins had the second-best time (22:04). Waynflete’s boys were third, with Will Barmby placing seventh individually (18:46).


Waynflete did not qualify for states at the Western Maine Conference match. The Flyers will send two individuals to states, Henry Kerr and Oscar Twinning.

The Southwestern Maine Activities Association qualifier was Monday, too late for this edition.

The state matches are Friday and Saturday at Natanis Golf Course in Vassalboro.

Press Herald staff writers Steve Craig and Travis Lazarczyk contributed to this story.

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

Comments are not available on this story.