(Ed. Note: For the complete Greely-Yarmouth boys’ soccer and Falmouth-Scarborough girls’ soccer game stories, see our website at theforecaster.net/sports)

The 2023 fall sports season is underway and couldn’t have produced a more palpitating first few days.

There was great drama across the board and the fun is just beginning.

Here’s a look back at the initial action and a glimpse at what’s to come:


Freeport’s Adam Michaud finds running room during the Falcons’ season-opening win over Winthrop Saturday. Huck Triggs / Sun Journal

Last weekend saw three of four local football teams debut in triumphant fashion.


Greely, which returned to stand-alone status as an eight-man program a year ago in a winless campaign, earned its first victory at any level since 2018, beating host Lake Region by a 64-26 margin Friday night. The Rangers shot to a 26-12 lead after one quarter and held a 34-18 advantage at halftime before making it 48-26 after three periods and pulling away in the fourth. Greely finished with 510 total yards. Quarterback Andrew Padgett completed 13-of-18 passes, good for 312 yards and four touchdowns. Padgett also ran for a score. Wes Piper and Ryder Simpson each had two receiving TDs. Jonah Guibord ran for three scores. Luca Bianchi and Brayden VanPembrook paced a strong defensive effort.

“Overall, we played a pretty good game,” said Greely coach Caleb King. “Lake Region was tough, but we wore them down and got the win. We are fortunate to have a ton of talent on our team and I think we showed that with our high-powered offense and tough defense. We have 18 or so guys that I am confident could be starters on any team that we play, so no matter who is in the game, we don’t lose a step. We made some mistakes throughout the game that we need to clean up, but overall I am happy with how this group played.

“We did not have a good record last year, but these guys never quit on each other, even when it would have been easy. They put in a ton of effort during the offseason to prepare themselves to be the best football players they can be. We had 20-30 guys at every workout over the summer, they have conditioned hard all year, they practice hard and it showed Friday night. I couldn’t be more proud of this group, they definitely earned this win, but we are not going to hang our hats on just one win. We have a tough schedule ahead of us against some good football teams, so we plan on keeping the momentum from this win going. Every day, every game, every practice, every rep, our foot is on the gas and we are not letting up.”

The Rangers hope to start 2-0 Friday when they visit Camden Hills (1-0).

Yarmouth, the reigning eight-man large division state champion, picked right off where it left off when it beat visiting Mt. Ararat, 30-6, on Opening Night. Standout senior running back Michael McGonagle picked up where he left off last year by rushing for 235 yards and three touchdowns. Sam Bradford also threw a touchdown pass to Adam Pelotte. The Clippers travel to Spruce Mountain (0-1) Friday.

Freeport started with a thrilling 39-33 victory over Winthrop in a game played on the turf at Lewiston High School. The Falcons raced to a 13-0 first quarter lead behind a 15-yard touchdown run from Noah Michaud (and an extra point from Rosie Panenka) and a 20-yard touchdown pass from Teddy Peters to Adam Michaud. The Ramblers rallied to tie it, 19-19, at halftime (a 32-yard Peters to David Ulrickson TD pass accounted for Freeport’s points). The Falcons seemingly regained control in the third period, as Peters and Ulrickson connected again, from 36-yards out, then Noah Michaud returned an interception 95 yards for a TD and Peters hit Adam Michaud with the two-point conversion for a 33-19 advantage. Again, Winthrop rallied, pulling even, but late in regulation, Peters connected with Cooper DeLois for a 19-yard touchdown for the winning score.


“I don’t get to call the plays, but I was grateful to get the ball,” DeLois said. “The younger guys stepped up and helped out. The line especially, those blocks came together.”

“It was a great game,” Freeport coach Paul St. Pierre said. “Winthrop is a great team and I expected them for this sort of slugfest coming down to the end. We just made one more play than they did. We know as long as there’s time on the clock and air in our lungs, we have a chance to score the ball. The guys believed. They were fully confident in themselves and they went out and executed it.”

The Falcons host Lisbon (1-0) Saturday night in a rematch of last year’s Greyhounds’ playoff victory.

Falmouth was the lone local squad to fall in its first game, losing at home to Messalonskee, 48-8. The Navigators’ lone points came on an 18-yard TD run by Indi Backman, who had 90 rushing yards, as well as four receptions for 50 yards. Falmouth was led defensively by Will Gale, who had 10 tackles.

“Too many rookie mistakes led to big plays by Messalonskee,” said Falmouth coach John Fitzsimmons.

The Navigators hope to get in the win column Friday at Lawrence (0-1).


Boys’ soccer

Yarmouth’s Marcelino Mulumbo runs down a loose ball as Greely’s Owen Partridge (8) and senior Eric Asherman defend during the Rangers’ 2-0 victory Saturday. Michael Hoffer / For The Forecaster

Greely’s boys’ soccer team is off to an auspicious start. Saturday, the Rangers hosted defending Class B champion Yarmouth, the preseason favorite, and for the first time in nine years managed to beat their nemesis, 2-0. Bez Mendelsohn scored goals in each half as the Rangers beat the rival Clippers in Cumberland for the first time since Oct. 10, 2007.

“We work hard in practice and it paid off today,” said Mendelsohn. “We definitely knew it would be a tough game. Yarmouth’s a great team. We came in with one goal, to win.”

“It’s great,” said senior captain Keegan Hale. “It’s been a long time since we’ve beaten them at home. We lost a lot of talent from last year, but we’ve come in as a team. We have good chemistry. We knew we had a good chance.”

“It feels good,” added longtime Greely coach Mike Andreasen. “It was like the Bambino Curse. I’d see people at Hannaford and they’d reference it. I knew we were better than last year because we played more together. To win this is really nice.”

The Rangers were at Fryeburg Academy Tuesday, go to Cape Elizabeth Thursday, then host four-time reigning Class C champion Waynflete Tuesday of next week.


“All we’re looking for now is to play good soccer and give everyone our best shot,” Andreasen said.

Yarmouth had a big advantage in shots in its loss at Greely, but couldn’t put many on frame as the Clippers opened the season with a loss for the first time since 2011.

“It’s been awhile,” said longtime Yarmouth coach Mike Hagerty. “Greely deserves credit. The stats don’t matter. It’s the score. I’d rather learn that lesson now. It’s not like we played badly today. We started great the first 10 minutes, then we slowed down and they hit long balls and got dangerous. They got a goal because we didn’t play fast enough. We played OK in the second half. We just have to get closer to the goal.”

The Clippers look to even their record Wednesday when Gray-New Gloucester pays a visit. Yarmouth welcomes York Thursday, then hosts reigning Class A champion Brunswick Saturday night.

“We’ll learn from this,” said Hagerty. “No one is panicking or getting mad. I’m still really positive. Now, we have to hold serve when (the Rangers) come to us, so we don’t have to come here for a playoff game. We have to execute better.”

Freeport beat visiting Gray-New Gloucester, 2-1, in a double-overtime thriller in its opener. Emmanuel Ekogha scored in regulation and with four seconds left in the second overtime, Garrett Richison was fouled in the box and Owen Rusiecki converted the penalty kick to win it. The Falcons were at North Yarmouth Academy Tuesday (see our website for game story), welcome Morse Saturday and play host to Cape Elizabeth Tuesday of next week.


Falmouth started with a 1-1 home draw versus Deering. Sam Yoon had the Navigators goal and goalkeeper Caden Berry made five saves. After playing at Gorham Tuesday, Falmouth hosts South Portland Thursday and visits Portland Tuesday of next week.

NYA, the reigning Class D state champion, opened with a 7-0 home win over Sacopee Valley. Jacob Colaluca led the way with three goals. Ethan King added two goals and Jesse Mutagoma and Cael Woelflein also scored. The Panthers hosted Freeport Tuesday and play host to Lake Region Thursday.

Girls’ soccer

Falmouth senior Mallory Kerr (17) and Morgan Adams play defense during a season-opening 4-1 loss at reigning Class A champion Scarborough. Michael Hoffer / For The Forecaster

On the girls’ side, NYA, the four-time reigning Class D state champion, extended its win streak to 30 games and its unbeaten streak to 39 after opening with a 5-0 victory at Sacopee Valley last week. Hayden Wienckowski scored twice and Lyla Casey, Emily Robbins and Natasha Godrey (her first varsity goal) all finished once. Ella Giguere had two assists and Sarah Moore made two saves. The Panthers faced a key test Tuesday at Freeport (see our website for game story). NYA is at Lake Region Thursday and returns home Friday to take on Old Orchard Beach.

Falmouth started with a 4-1 loss at reigning Class A state champion Scarborough. The Navigators got a late goal from Mallory Kerr.

“This was a good stepping-stone to see where we’re at,” said Navigators coach Ben Johnson. “We’ll play them again (at the end of the season). We’re still figuring out our shape and where everyone fits. Last year, I started late, so it was tough to find our identity. This year, we return a lot.”


Falmouth hosted Biddeford Wednesday, travels to Thornton Academy Friday and welcomes Kennebunk Tuesday of next week.

“The girls know who they are and they’ve come together,” Johnson said. “We just have to work to get better.”

Greely opened with a dramatic 1-0 double-overtime home win over reigning Class B champion Yarmouth, as Avery Bush had the goal and Lizzie Sproul made eight saves. The Rangers hosted Fryeburg Academy Tuesday, welcome Cape Elizabeth Thursday and go to Waynflete Tuesday of next week.

The Clippers hoped to get in the win column Tuesday at Gray-New Gloucester. Yarmouth visits Brunswick Saturday and goes to York for a rematch of last year’s regional final Tuesday of next week.

Freeport started by downing host Gray-New Gloucester, 3-0. Lucie Bourgeois, Claire Nadeau and Halle York all scored. After hosting NYA Tuesday, the Falcons visit Morse Friday and travel to Cape Elizabeth Tuesday of next week.

Field hockey


Yarmouth’s field hockey team gave first-year coach Bre Morrill a huge victory in her debut, beating host Freeport, the reigning Class B South champion, 4-3. Sophie Smith led the Clippers with three goals and Erica O’Connell also scored. Yarmouth hosted Wells Tuesday, welcomes Spruce Mountain Saturday and is home with Poland Tuesday of next week.

The Falcons got two goals from Sophie Bradford and another from Emily Groves in their season-opening home loss to Yarmouth. Freeport looked to get back on track Tuesday at York in a rematch of last year’s regional final. The Falcons are at Poland Thursday and visit Brunswick Saturday.

Greely started with a 4-1 home win over St. Dom’s, then lost at home to Lake Region Monday, 5-3. In the victory, Lauren Hazard, Maya Tracey, Leyla Rabbat and Rachel Miles all scored. In the setback, Hazard, Miles and Tracey each had one goal. The Rangers are back in action Friday at Wells.

Falmouth opens its season Thursday at Sanford. The Navigators host South Portland Monday of next week.


Yarmouth’s four-time reigning Class B state champion volleyball team opened by downing visiting Gardiner in straight sets (25-11, 25-11, 25-19) in a rematch of last year’s state match. Annie Vinnakota had eight kills and Maddy Beaudon added six aces. The Clippers have a showdown of reigning champions Wednesday at Biddeford, then host Gorham Tuesday of next week.


Greely was a straight set winner over visiting Westbrook in its first match. The Rangers go to Cony Wednesday, visit Ellsworth Saturday and travel to Wells Tuesday of next week.

Falmouth blanked host Marshwood in its first match. The Navigators host Cape Elizabeth Wednesday, go to South Portland Saturday and welcome Kennebunk Tuesday of next week.

NYA was blanked by visiting Lake Region in its first match. The Panthers host Edward Little Thursday, then welcome both Bucksport and George Stevens Academy Saturday.

Cross country

The cross country season began last week, as Greely hosted Freeport, Yarmouth and Cape Elizabeth.

In the boys’ meet won by the reigning Class B state champion Falcons, Alex Gilbert had the top time (17:15). The Rangers came in second and had the runner-up individual (William Coull, 17:19). The Clippers came in third and were led by Cam Pernal (eighth, 18:53).


The girls’ meet was won by Greely. The Rangers were paced by Rowan Barry (third, 21:34). Freeport was second and was led by Lucy Huggett (fourth, 21:39). Yarmouth placed third. Chloe Bibula was the individual runner-up (21:17).

Falmouth also began with a home meet, against Bonny Eagle, Sanford and South Portland. In the girls’ meet, the Navigators were second to Bonny Eagle. Maeve Ginevan placed fifth (22:32). Falmouth’s boys were third (the Scots were first), as Christopher Jaynes came in sixth individually (19:07).


On the links, Falmouth opened by tying Scarborough (6.5-6.5) and beating Deering (13-0).

Freeport started with wins over Fryeburg Academy and Lake Region, then defeated Cape Elizabeth (5.5-3.5) last week.

Greely started with an 11-2 victory over Bonny Eagle.

Sun Journal staff writer Nathan Fournier contributed to this story.

Sports Editor Michael Hoffer can be reached at mhoffer@theforecaster.net. 

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