SACO — The way the Thornton Academy girls’ lacrosse team came out firing in the second half of Wednesday’s Class A preliminary-round game against rival Scarborough, surely Coach Craig Agreste said something at halftime to fire up the Trojans.

“Nothing,” Agreste said. “Keep playing the way we’re playing. I thought we played a great first half. We didn’t change up anything. Defensively, we played great. I thought we were patient offensively and took what they gave us.”

Thornton scored twice in the first three minutes of the second half to double its lead, and pulled away with an 11-3 win played through a steady rain for much of the game.

No. 4 Thornton Academy (11-4) will host No. 5 Marshwood (10-5) at Hill Stadium in a quarterfinal game at 1 p.m. Friday. No. 13 Scarborough ends the season at 3-12.

“We were trying to stop their momentum most of the game, and we never caught our momentum,” said Scarborough Coach Taylor Colangelo.

Ahead 4-2 at the half, the Trojans applied the pressure to Scarborough early in the second half. Amelia Benoit’s goal with 23:28 left in the game increased Thornton’s lead to 5-2. One minute and one second later, Natalie Hilton scored to give the Trojans a 6-2 lead, with an assist from Benoit. Goals by Emma Boissonneault at 17:46 and Morgan Bolduc at 10:28 pushed the lead to 8-2.


“I think it was a matter of us all getting together and really getting our intensity up. Once we started getting goals in, we could see their morale was going down, so we wanted to capitalize on that. That was just our mentality throughout the end of the game,” said Bolduc, who scored three goals and assisted on another.

As the Trojans controlled play throughout the second half, Colangelo felt her team’s confidence waning after a solid first half in which they mostly kept pace with Thornton.

“They’re putting balls in, they’re connecting, they’re converting on attack, and we just weren’t able to do that in the second half. If we would’ve been able to connect on a few more touches and passes and put a few more goals in the back of the cage, we would’ve had a little more confidence,” Colangelo said.

Bolduc’s goal 16 seconds into the game gave Thornton an early lead. At 22:10 of the first half, Hilton took a pass from Bolduc and cut left to right in front of Scarborough’s net, firing in a shot for a 2-0 lead. The Red Storm, who lost to Thornton 12-7 in the regular season on April 20, were patient on offense, and it paid off when Molly Henderson scored with 16:49 left in the first half to cut the Trojans’ lead to 2-1.

“We all had that mindset, if we don’t let them get a big lead on us we can just capitalize on our strengths,” Bolduc said.

Hilton had three goals for Thornton, and Ayala Littlefield and Boissonneault each scored twice. Henderson scored two goals for the Red Storm. Kali Harthorne made seven saves for Scarborough. Freshman Sophia Auger had five stops for the Trojans.

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