SCARBOROUGH—Freeport’s girls’ lacrosse team didn’t have much of a preseason, but that didn’t stop the Falcons from getting their regular season off to a strong start Tuesday morning at the Kippy Mitchell Sports Complex.

The host Scarborough Red Storm, who already have a game under their belt, didn’t make it easy, however.

The Red Storm struck first on a goal from senior Julia Sholl midway through the first quarter, but they didn’t score again in the first half. Junior standouts Lana DiRusso and Mia Levesque and senior Kiley Webber then scored free position goals to give Freeport a 3-1 lead at the break.

Scarborough reawakened early in the second half and drew even on goals from Sholl and freshman Madison Howes, but with 1:31 left in the third period, DiRusso finished to put the Falcons on top to stay.

After senior Ava Stone opened the final stanza with a goal for Freeport, DiRusso struck twice more and the Falcons were able to go on to an 8-6 victory.

DiRusso led the way with four goals as the Falcons started 1-0 while dropping the Red Storm to 1-1 in the process.


“This was our first game and their second and it was sloppy at times,” said Freeport coach Marcia Wood, who previously coached at Scarborough. “We never got momentum in the preseason. We had a week, then a snowstorm, then rain. We’ve had two scrimmages canceled. We couldn’t get in a rhythm. I’m glad to get out of this one with a win and we’ll move on.”


For a decade beginning in 2005, Wood was at the helm of the Scarborough girls’ program and she enjoyed an abundance of success, going 111-34, winning Class A state titles in 2006, 2010, 2011 and 2012 (still the lone crowns won the Red Storm).

Wood then took over at Freeport in 2015 and in nine season, won 71 games and led the Falcons to their first-ever title a year ago.

Freeport was hit hard by graduation and accepted the challenge of moving up from Class C to Class B this year, but the Falcons retain enough firepower to make another title run.

Scarborough, meanwhile, went 3-12 a year ago, but did make the playoffs in Taylor Colangelo’s first season, losing a state preliminary round playoff contest to Thornton Academy, 11-3.


This spring, the Red Storm got off to a dramatic start with an 11-10, triple-overtime win at Portland on senior Fiona Betters’ goal in last week’s opener.

“Coming out and winning the season opener in triple-overtime was a huge confidence builder for these kids,” said Colangelo. “We can go back to that game and relive it because we’ve done it before. We’ll look back on it all season and visualize what it takes to win an overtime game.”

Last year, in the teams’ first countable meeting in 18 years, host Freeport prevailed, 11-6, en route to the championship.

Tuesday, on a most comfortable mid-April day (60 degrees at the start), the Falcons got better as the game went on and earned the first of what figures to be many victories this season.

Scarborough junior goalie Fiona McDougal prepares to deny Freeport sophomore Elsa Klein on a free position early in the Falcons’ 8-6 victory Tuesday. Hoffer photos.

Freeport had the first good scoring chance, as sophomore Elsa Klein earned a free position shot two minutes in, but Scarborough junior goalie Fiona McDougal made the save.

After Betters was denied at the other end by Falcons junior goalie Hailly Curtis, the home team struck first, as Sholl took a pass from sophomore Kate Mokriski and finished with 7:20 left in the opening stanza.


Freeport drew even with 5:32 on the clock, as Levesque scored on a free position, then with 4:10 showing, Webber added a free position goal to make it 2-1 Falcons after 12 minutes (girls’ lacrosse consists of four quarters this year instead of two halves as in previous seasons).

Freeport scored a third free position goal 85 seconds into the second period, as DiRusso did the honors, but neither team would score again before halftime.

Curtis denied Red Storm freshman Avery Larsen, Larsen hit the post, Larsen sent a free position shot wide and inside the final minute, an apparent Betters free position goal was waved off due to the officials ruling her in the crease.

Scarborough junior Grace Carlista races upfield as Freeport senior Kiley Webber defends.

The goal-scoring returned with 9:23 left in the third quarter, as Sholl scored unassisted to end a 21 minute, 57 second drought.

After McDougal denied Levesque, Scarborough tied the score in somewhat fluky fashion with 8:03 remaining ,as sophomore Hope Melevsky fed the ball in front to Howes and while Howes wasn’t able to catch the ball, it ricocheted off her stick and past Curtis and in to make it 3-3.

Betters then had a chance to give the Red Storm the lead, but her free position shot was denied by Curtis.


Then, with 1:31 on the clock, DiRusso gave the Falcons the lead for good, making a nice move past a defender and burying the shot to end her team’s 21:04 drought.

Scarborough junior Kalei Kieu tries to get around Freeport sophomore Gwen Dunham.

It was still anyone’s game at the start of the fourth quarter and Sholl had a shot to tie the score early, but Curtis made the save.

With 9:24 remaining, Stone gave Freeport a little breathing room, scoring from freshman Ella Tracy.

A minute later, DiRusso again wouldn’t be denied, fighting through the defense and scoring to make it 6-3.

DiRusso then scored her final goal with 7:04 on the clock, as Tracy set her up to seemingly put it away.

But Scarborough wasn’t ready to roll over.


Thirty-seven seconds later, Larsen found Carlista for a goal.

Then, with 5:28 to go, Larsen scored unassisted to cut the deficit to 7-5.

That’s as close as the Falcons allowed the Red Storm to get, however, as with 4:25 remaining, Stone set up Levesque for an insurance goal.

Carlista answered 16 seconds later with an unassisted goal after a nice move and Scarborough won the ensuing draw, but threw the ball away.

The Red Storm had one last look to make things interesting, but Curtis saved a shot from Mokriski and Freeport went on to an 8-6 victory.

Freeport players congratulate junior Hailly Curtis after Tuesday’s victory.

“It was great to back out there,” said Levesque. “We really enjoy playing against awesome competition. It’s good to shake off the nerves. Once we got going, everyone came together. We got everyone getting good touches.”


“We worked the ball faster in the second half,” DiRusso said. “Once someone was open, we hit them quicker. We got the hang of the man-marking and double teaming and were able to get open.”

“We haven’t really been working on offense,” Wood added. “We haven’t done any set plays or movement. We’ve focused on defense. We’ve lost all of our defenders and our goalie and (junior) Izzy (Orland) with her injury, but they’re getting it.”

DiRusso paced the offense with four goals. Levesque scored twice, while Stone and Webber each found the net once.

“It was nice to Ava and Kiley score,” Wood said. “They marked Lana and it affected her a little bit, but she scored four goals. We didn’t have to change things up. We used pick-and-rolls at the end. We’re used to watching Mia and Lana, so we need other people to step up and be more balanced.”

Tracy finished with two assists and Stone had one.

The Falcons had a 37-32 advantage in ground balls (DiRusso and Stone each had six), overcame 21 turnovers and had a 17-16 edge in shots (12-11 on cage) and got five key saves from Curtis.


Scarborough’s effort was paced by Carlista and Sholl, who both scored two goals. Howes and Larsen finished with one apiece.

Howes, Larsen and Mokriski all had one assist.

Sholl had a team-high six ground balls.

McDougal saved four shots.

The Red Storm had a 10-8 edge in the draw circle, but turned the ball over 23 times.

“We had our chances against a very good team,” Colangelo lamented. “We just made some small mistakes, beginning-of-the-season mistakes. We’ve played two close games back-to-back and that’s hard. We’re not causing turnovers and we’re not holding the ball. That’s key in huge games like this. We’re still really young.


“Our defenders adjusted really well knowing Lana is a top scorer. We know she can catch-and-shoot and drive. She’s a threat all over the place. Taking her out of the game was our plan. For the most part, we made it hard for her to score. She ended up with four (goals), but they weren’t an easy four. She had to work hard to get the ball.”

Just getting started

Scarborough hopes to bounce back Thursday when it faces another stern test, from visiting Falmouth, a Class A powerhouse.

“We never have an easy schedule,” Colangelo said. “I think that tests our ability to adapt. We just want take these hard games and go out and play our game.”

Freeport hopes to improve to 2-0 Friday, but it won’t come easily, as reigning Class B champion Greely pays a visit in an early-season showdown for supremacy.

“We have a very strong sophomore class, which is awesome,” Levesque said. “We have good freshmen coming up too. We have a new goalie. We’re a whole new team this year and I think we can do great things.”

“I’m excited,” DiRusso said. “This year, our team has a bunch of scorers, a solid defense. I think things are looking good.”

“We have a lot to work on,” Wood added. “I’m glad we’ll have two full days of practice. It’s going to take a little time. Once we find our balance, we’ll be fine.”

Sports Editor Michael Hoffer can be reached at

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