Greely girls’ lacrosse coach Becca Koelker called a timeout with 2:15 left in the Class B title game Saturday and turned the huddle over to senior Eva Williams.

Williams then addressed the Rangers, sternly telling them exactly how they were going to hold on and beat Freeport for a third straight state championship.

“All season, Eva’s the one coaching these guys along. That’s our philosophy. We want to give them the leadership so that they lead both on and off the field, and she’s done that,” Koelker said after an 8-7 victory at Portland’s Fitzpatrick Stadium.

“This victory is very sweet, because we graduated 11 seniors who had been with us for two years. We started with a blank page and had to fill it up from the ground up. They have willed us to this victory, this group of seniors.”

Williams was part cheerleader and part prophet in her late-game pep talk, telling her teammates they would take care of the ball and make smart passes. While Freeport did get control for one last chance to tie the game, it went for naught.

“I just saw the clock and I knew the job had to be done. I’m thinking, I want the gold,” said Williams, who had a goal and five assists. “We have so much drive and so much communication, it was about remotivating ourselves to finish how we started.”


Greely finished with a 13-4 record, losing only to the top three teams in Class A. Freeport (15-2), which moved up to Class B after winning Class C last season, lost two one-goal games to Greely.

“Man, is this not the typical Freeport-Greely game? I think it’s been every single time we play them, they just go up fast, and as much as we battle back, that hole’s too big at the beginning,” said Freeport Coach Marcia Wood. “To win a state championship and to beat Greely, you need to play an entire game. Unfortunately, we didn’t do that today and Greely did.”

Greely’s Lydia Miller leans on teammate Asja Kelman after the Rangers edged Freeport 8-7 in the Class B final Saturday in Portland. Anna Chadwick/Morning Sentinel

The Rangers dominated the first half, leading 4-1 after one quarter and 7-1 at the halftime break. The key to the strong start was winning possession off the draw and working that into fast-break scoring opportunities.

“I thought we handled the ball really well in the first half,” Koelker said.

Wood cautioned her team at halftime to not let the game get out of control. Don’t let it get embarrassing, she said.

It didn’t. Goals by Mia Levesque, Lana DiRusso (four goals), Reed Proscia and Josie Gideon cut Greely’s lead to 7-5 going to the fourth quarter.


Williams said she reminded her team to slow down and focus on the little things. Make sure you catch the ball and take care of it when you have it. She assisted on Jane Flynn’s goal with 5:36 left that gave the Rangers an 8-5 lead.

“The little things is what gets you the win every single time,” Williams said.

Back-to-back free position goals by DiRusso cut Greely’s lead to one goal with 2:20 to play.

“It’s really hard to look past the loss and see that battle. I’m super proud of them. I know the loss is stinging, but you have to look at the whole game,” Wood said. “The way things were going (in the first half), it very well could’ve been very bad.”

At 2:15, Koelker called a timeout and turned things over to Williams.

Williams missed all of last season because of a torn ACL, and this was the moment she’d been waiting for.

“This team has done so much work year after year. For me personally, coming back from an injury, every moment of hard work pays off,” Williams said.


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