SCARBOROUGH — As her team ran across the field to celebrate with its fans, Yarmouth girls’ lacrosse Coach Dorothy Holt summed up the Clippers’ win succintly.

“We stuck to our game plan,” Holt said. “They didn’t panic.”

And that game plan was?

“I can’t tell you yet, not until after Friday night,” Holt said.

Tuesday night at Scarborough High’s Kippy Mitchell Field, Holt’s Clippers and their team of mystery accomplished something that hadn’t been done since 2019. Yarmouth beat Kennebunk in the playoffs, 8-7, to earn a spot in Friday’s Class A state championship game.

No. 3 Yarmouth (15-2) will take on No. 1 Falmouth (16-0) at 5 p.m. Friday at Portland’s Fitzpatrick Stadium. It’s the third straight state game for the Clippers. No. 2 Kennebunk, winner of the last three state titles, ends the season at 15-2.


Neena Panozzo scored the winning goal for Yarmouth with 54.6 seconds left, taking a pass from Lauren Keaney and firing a high shot into the net. The goal came almost a minute after Yarmouth called timeout with 1:50 to play, after regaining possession on a Kennebunk turnover with approximately 2:20 to play.

Holt’s instructions in the timeout were simple.

“I told them to play our game. We’re going to go to goal. We’re not going to stall, and when you find the space, take it. Put the ball in the back of the net, and they did it,” Holt said.

Panozzo, who also scored the tying goal with 6:22 to play after a Rams turnover gave Yarmouth the ball near the Kennebunk goal, said Holt inspires confidence in the team.

“Dorothy is an amazing coach and she inspires us so much. She was just letting us know we had the potential to win, and we had to settle down and stay composed. She knew we could do it,” Panozzo said.

The score was tied 5-5 late in the third quarter when Kennebunk’s Ivy Armentrout scored with 3:49 left in the quarter to give the Rams the lead. Camdyn Keenan’s goal with 9:25 left in the game gave Kennebunk a 7-5 lead.


Yarmouth’s comeback started with a Brooke Boone goal with 7:35 to play, cutting the Clippers deficit to 7-6. It was Boone’s third goal of the game, and began Yarmouth’s second comeback of the night.

“The game just comes in waves. We knew that if we had possession we could put the ball in the back of the net,” Panozzo said. “That just shows that we never give up.”

Yarmouth took an early 2-0 lead on goals by Boone and Panozzo, but Kennebunk responded with five straight goals. Helen Kennie’s goal with 4:40 left in the first half gave the Rams a 5-2 lead.

“We just knew if (we) pulled out, the lanes would open and we’d be able to score. It was all about patience, really,” Kennebunk Coach Annie Barker said.

The Clippers tied the game 5-5 with 7:11 left in the third on Aine Powers’ free position goal.

With the score tied 7-7, Kennebunk called timeout with 3:26 left, but turned the ball over with just under two and half minutes left, setting up Yarmouth’s winning scoring chance. Down 8-7, the Rams won the draw and had the ball deep in Yarmouth territory, but another turnover sealed the win for the Clippers.

“We made some mistakes. It was going to go either way. We did the right thing, we won the last draw to get it down there, but we didn’t make a good decision. We could’ve waited and got the last shot off,” Barker said.

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